Most people at some point will use the “It’s my parents fault” excuse. Even if they do not outwardly admit it, in their minds they are thinking, ‘I am fat because my parents were,” or “I’m broke because my folks were bad with money.” “I drink because my dad did and I can’t cook because my mom was a bad cook.” Blaming parents for your mistakes is an awful and extremely limiting way to live your life, whether you do it consciously or not. And the anger that stems from years of blaming others for your problems is nothing but a personal trap that keeps you stuck in a rut.
The reality is that we are a product of our environments. Just like kids who grow up with smokers in the house are more likely to smoke themselves as adults – our upbringing and parental examples play a part in who we are and who we become. The problem is that along with our upbringing and socialization comes the reality that at some point we are free thinking who adults who make our own decisions in life. Instead of following in the muddy footprints of our elders, we also have a choice to learn from their mistakes. To make our own lives better.
In some cases, the parents may be the cause or at least the generalized root of some of your problems. This is especially true in the cases of neglect, and abuse. And then as these people become adults, it becomes their responsible to seek healing and counseling from professionals. The problem is that the vast majority of folks refuse to own up to their own problems. And therefore place control of their lives out of their hands. The only things that each of us can control or change are the things that we recognize and take responsibility for.
The first step in making your life better is realizing what you are not good at. Look at areas of your life that you would like to improve upon. Try to figure out ways to generally boost these areas. For instance if you are bad money, take a money management course, or online class. Order yourself a book, or look for free services in your community or at your local bank to help you. If you want to learn how to cook, record several cooking shows, ask a friend, or take a class. If you don’t feel you have enough patience with your children after being raised in a home with little to no control – then take some parenting classes. You might be surprised about how many resources are available if you take the time to look.
Additionally, take some mental inventory and write down some of the preconceived notions you have about life, which may have resulted from your parents. Perhaps they tried to show you that the world is an unfair, frightening place. Or maybe they didn’t make you feel very secure. They may have left you with the impression that the world is out to get you, or that people cannot be trusted. This doesn’t mean that as an adult, you have to necessarily buy into these lines of thinking. Remember, you can own your own private thoughts and perceptions about YOUR world.
The other problem with blaming others for your lacks in life – whether your parents or someone else, is that it fills you with anger and resentment and pigeon holes you from being able to escape to a new and happier life. You are only a victim if you believe you are, and part of the blame game reduces you to nothing but a victim of circumstance and steals your power.
The reality is that all of us as parents make mistakes. You will make mistakes with your own children. There will be things they learn from you that they will regret. Just as you will never be the perfect parent – you can only hope that your children will learn from your mistakes and make their own lives better. This same is true for your own parents. No matter what they did wrong, no matter what sort of skewed belief system they inflicted upon you – once you become an adult you have the choices to live the life you deem acceptable for you. If you can see where they went wrong – then you have a useful and extremely powerful tool that you can use for your personal betterment rather than being stuck in the blame, shame, and resentment game.
If you really want control of your life then stop blaming others for YOUR problems. Take control of your life. Own the fact that your future can be anything that you dream it to be. Believe in yourself. And realize that while you may have been raised by your parents and under their influence, you don’t have to be a product of their bad decisions or lacks.