Let me paint you a picture, let's say you know someone who is a liar. I am talking about if they tell you that it's raining outside you have to go out actually to see if it is true. Now it is not that you condone them lying, BUT you accept them for what and who they are and you deal with them accordingly. You don't expect the truth from them on certain things and won't tell them things you don't want to be put out. You adjust your expectations.
Doing this for people who are your family seems to be a daunting task! When dealing with family things can become complicated, because sometimes a family member will abuse the love you have for them. They know that family wants the best for them and often times they know they can intentionally do something and all is forgiving. This is especially true for families rooted in the church because they believe that you should forgive in spite. I am a firm believer in forgiveness but don't believe in being a fool. I can forgive an act and still never deal with you again because I have learned to adjust my expectations for people.
Often times the biggest struggle is issues that we have with parents or people that have raised us. Now, this is a tricky situation sometimes. In a perfect world, a parent will be an example for their children as to what a productive person should be. In a perfect world, they will be loving, supportive and a person to whom you can come to about anything and walk away feeling better.
This however for many people isn't a reality. We are all flawed human beings but it is a different type of pain not feeling the love from a parent. It hurts and often times it will shape how you do life if you are not careful.
I like to get personal to bring home a point. Now I am now 42, and how I thought 10-20 years ago is totally different. I don't believe in putting people's business out there, even when it involves my truth. What I will say though is this, at 42 I have put in countless hours of self-work. I have read many books, I have had counseling and I truly had to adjust my expectations and understand some things.
You see your parents or loved ones may not have the capacity to be nurturing, emotionally available or understanding, or just present in ways that you would like. Once you understand that you cannot make them into something they aren't or they aren't comfortable enough or truthful enough with themselves, you will be able to accept what you have. Once you master this way of thinking and acceptance, you will allow yourself to shape the relationship based on what is and isn't possible.