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How to manage family differences
Gillian Mc Donald
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Family differences will always be found among families because people that make up families are different, they come from different social and economic backgrounds, there is no perfect family. Therefore it is important to recognize that from time to time differences are going to arise and they will have to be dealt with.
According to Ephesians 5:33, Husbands are told to love their wives even as they love themselves, and wives are told to respect their husbands
Whatever the difference the key is to move forward with respect and understanding, recognizing the importance of working things out, by working together and learning from each other.and.finding proper ways to communicate feelings and needs. Most times a lot of these differences are because we have been accustomed to doing things one way. In order to manage family differences they are some basic things that needs to be addressed.
Love should be the driving force, not a feeling but a commitment in the way we act. You find motivation to love in the promise, character and gift of God, not in their attractiveness or lack thereof. It is a decision to value people because they are created in the image of God who is love. It shows spiritual maturity. 1 Peter 4:8 says ,Love covers a multitude of sins
One needs to be committed to the family, it is extremely difficult to handle family differences and have cohesion when both parties are not committed. Things cannot be cannot be dealt with properly if one party does not want to get involved, or shirk their responsibility.
There needs to be a definition of what is important to those involved and what is not, its not about tradition but what will work for the situation . Not because the family you came from has done it this way does not mean that it cannot be done differently. One need to learn how to be flexible and willing to change. Do not be proud and arrogant and make the other person feel inferior but instead be understanding and find the best way to resolve the differences.
Accept the other person's feelings and try to understand why they act or feel the way they do. Do not be judgmental or critical, There must be trust and openness with each other so that one is willing to share their feelings and thoughts on the issue. One must learn to listen attentively and communicate effectively by asking questions where necessary so that there is no misunderstanding of what is being said.
Do not be selfish or rude or self centered and want to have your own way,. leave room for the other person. Affirm and support each other . Value the other person's ideas and avoid being the know it all type.This allows individuals to share their wealth of knowledge and experiences which would cause individuals to learn from and about each other
Do not ridicule, criticize, blame, find fault or resort to name calling because tempers will begin to flare and you will begin to create a hostile environment, there will be no peace. Respect each other at all times, give the other party the same respect you would give someone outside your home, they deserve it.
Whatever the family differences, problems can be worked out amicably ,so that all can live in a safe, peaceful and stable environment and loving environment.
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