Dysfunctional Family & The Holiday Blues =(

The picture above courtesy of pexels

With Thanksgiving coming up next week, I thought I’d talk about family. The holidays are supposed to be the times in which we get together with family and laugh, talk, remanence, give thanks and most of EAT! But sometimes that’s not always easy, especially if you have dysfunctional family members or a MEMBER! which could make those holiday gatherings very uncomfortable.

There’s a quote that says, “Families are like fudge, mostly sweet with lots of nuts.” Does that sound like your family? Because let’s face it, we all have a family member or relatives who seem to have come from another planet than we did.

While we may all wish we can send them back for a replacement, they are still part of our family and despite the ups and downs that surround them, we have to deal with them and love them the same. I used to think that everyone had a good family except for me because we seemed to fight all the time and just when you thought everybody was getting along, something would come up out of nowhere.

It could be from something my mom said, my dad did, my sister thought or how I reacted, and the next thing we know, no one would pick up a phone for months on end.
As I got older, I realized that even the biggest families had issues and no family is perfect by any means and while my family was distant, there were other families who didn’t come together at all or allowed hatred to circle through them and build a fire that never ended.

We can’t save the world or help every dysfunctional family but listed below are a few tips to maybe keep the line of communication open with our estranged relatives before, during and after the holidays.

#1. Communicate regularly.

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This may be very hard for some families because most of them have built up so many issues and have held onto so much hurt, that it’ll take several counseling sessions to get those layers pulled completely away. But I’ve found that most family situations can be solved if we can learn to talk to each other before a situation escalates out of control.

*At least you try to talk it out, even if they don’t want too*

Do your part, because at the end of the day, what YOU DID really will matter. If they choose not to conform, then you did your part – pray for them and move on. Hopefully, they’ll come around when they’re ready.

#2. Seek counseling from a family therapist.

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If regular communication does not succeed, then counseling is the next step. Some dysfunctional family issues may have nothing to do with you per se, but it could have something to do with what an older family member did.

Issues could’ve already been in place prior to your birth, in which the family never settled among themselves, which caused division with other family members. Counseling helps to get us past the “Then” to help us be better for the “Now” and future family generations to come.

#3. Back off but not completely.

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Most families feel that most fiery problems will resolve themselves by staying away, in most cases, this only makes matters worse and hatred increase. While situations may become too strong to handle and you may have to back off just to protect yourself, don’t allow it to stay that way.

Don’t let weeks, months, or even years keep you from being connected to your family unless you have been totally pushed away and in that case – it’s not your fault or problem but the individuals who closed the door without making amends.

#4. Forgiveness is key.

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When you’ve made every attempt to bring about reconciliation, but find that there’s no effort on their part, then you have to forgive them and move on.
Forgiveness doesn’t excuse the behavior that dysfunction brings, but it allows us to learn from what happened and to let it go (in which is a process all by itself)

Remember, it’s not about what they did, what they said or what they haven’t done; it’s about what you do. Forgiveness is your pass to have peace for yourself not them.
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We cannot change our families, because we’re stuck with them forever. No matter what we think or how we feel about them, they are a part of us, and we are apart of them.
But you’ll find out that family no matter how dysfunctional it may be, is a really great addition to your life. It’s something that everyone dreams of having – even if it can’t be with their “natural” ones.

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Okay, so BIG announcement. My next post will be on next Wednesday and will be my last post for the year. I know, I know – don’t cry……haha (I’m sure you’re not) Anywho, I’ll not only be taking a break from blogging but also social media as well. After next week, I won’t be posting anything until after the beginning of the year. 

What will my last post be about??? You’ll have to see next week – hint, hint: it’s going to be light and informative (the fun informative =)

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Thoughts: Is Halloween Reallyyyyyy, The Devil’s Birthday?

I recently glanced over a post (linked below) that asked a similar question, it got me to thinking – so I decided to write my thoughts about it…

So, I just have to say before I start this post that if you have a different opinion, while it’s appreciated because we all have one, right? But if yours is STRONGLY opinionated to the point of arguing (because I’m a lover, not a fighter = ) then please – STOP HERE and don’t go any further…

But, for everyone else who just want to read something today – let’s forge ahead….shall we? Okay, so I’m just going to put it out there – I’ve been told ALLLLLLLLL my little life that Halloween was the devils night and we should all stay in the house on that day. I was told that the devil uses that day to disguise himself as well as his counterparts because everyone’s in costumes so you’ll never know if it’s really a child or something else lurking behind it.

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This made me scared and if I can be honest, put a bad complex over me and the holiday altogether. Does the devil really have a birthday??? Like Jesus does??? I guess because Halloween has been linked to everything “evil” that was the most common day that seemed like it would be well-fitting for such an evil person.

Related Post: 3 Reasons Why Halloween Is Not Satan’s Birthday and Never Will Be

However; I don’t think that Halloween is the devil’s birthday – just as I don’t think Christmas is Jesus’ birthday (I know I just got nailed to every cross imaginable, for that statement) but I don’t. I know the bible makes references to the night he was born and the many things that happened but there’s no real (or at least I haven’t seen it) conclusion as to when Jesus was born and if I can be honest, I really don’t care to know – the only thing I know is that I LOVE HIM and appreciate him. We honor him every day when we give thanks for the things he has done, the things he has brought us thru and the things that we know, that we know, that we know should have happened to us but by his mercy and grace – we’re still here (can I get an amen for that?!)

If Halloween was really the devil’s birthday, then why do Christians still celebrate the day by doing trunk or treat or little parties and etc. I mean, that’s still a celebration for the day, right? I say, people believe what they want to believe and if you have kids then let them enjoy the day, trust me as they get older – they’ll form their own opinion about what they really think and not because of something, someone forced them to believe.

As a Christian, I’m not much into any holidays really – especially my birthday but that’s another post discussion. But I do have kids and they desire to hang with friends and do fun things on that night just as anyone else and I let them. In the past, we’ve watched scary movies, ate cupcakes and had pizza on that night.

Related Post: 5 Spooky/Thriller Movies You Must See Before Halloween Ends

Do I believe spirits are real? yes, I do…

Do I believe they only come out on Halloween? No, I don’t…

We live in a world full of spirits – Good as well as Bad ones

The question we should ask ourselves is “WHICH ones we’re entertaining the most”

So, this was just my two cents – which probably doesn’t matter much but anywho, I hope you have a GREAT Halloween, whether you believe in it or not. Whatever you decide to do on this day, just make it fun and not “intentionally” scary or bad on purpose. Holidays are what you make them out to be….whether you’re a Christian or not.

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Sunday’s Thought: What Defines A Man…

photo source above courtesy of bing/mengroup

Original piece, written by Roshonda N. Blackmon

What Defines a Man?

Some say it’s the way he dresses

Others say, the way he wears his suits and some think – It’s gotta be the cologne.

Some may say, his smile while others are certain it’s his looks.

Most say, the way he walks – while others are for sure it’s the way he talks.

Some may think, it’s all in his ride – while some are sure “It’s locked in his PRIDE”

So, what really defines a man………………………

Is it the home or the city he resides in?

Some may agree, while others nod in disagreement.

Is it the amount of money he makes? Or the job he idolizes or hates?

While these things are all material, let’s get down to the nitty gritty and state what’s truly lyrical.

The thing that truly defines a man, is this…………………….

His Wisdom

His  Heart

His Compassion

His Sensitivity

His Humbleness

His Family

His Love for God

You see, a man is defined by his character and not just by muscle alone.

So, I ask again – what defines a man; do you know?

Whatever your answer may be, make sure it’s not caught up by his physical traits. You have to look at the heart of the man and there you will see; What Truly Defines A MAN!

 

Happy Father's Day

 

Roshonda N. Blackmon – Creator of A Blog, A Magazine. It’s JustsumInspiration, Author, Speaker & Encourager

 

 

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Honor Thy Mother & Father. A Commandment for Everyone…

photo source above provided by: Bing/Prageru

There are several scriptures in the Bible that talks about children obeying their parents, adults included; While it’s a Blessing if we follow this simple, yet profound commandment, one might ask: Continue reading “Honor Thy Mother & Father. A Commandment for Everyone…”

10 Black Movie Classics You Must See or Re-watch for Black History Month

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Black History Month is here and while the month is short and will be over before you know it, it’s a month where African-Americans of times past and present are honored for their sacrifices, achievements and accomplishments marked throughout history. It’s a time for us to reflect on that rich history and celebrate the lives of the ones lost and present whom paved the way for generations of other African Americans to walk in freedom and while this movement is still a “work in progress” for the most part, we’re proud that they stood fearlessly in the face of adversity to make sure we have some of the luxuries we have today such as the right to vote.

One way to honor and look back on African-American culture, history, activists and the actors that played them or played parts representing such troubling times is by way of a movie. I personally love watching movies, especially the ones that portray the African-American men and women whom did so much for us. So, if you just happen to have a down day this month and want to celebrate the occasion, listed below are 10 Classic movies portrayed by African-Americans that you should watch in honor of Black History Month. In no particular order they are:

‘Purple Rain’

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What better way to celebrate black history and the life of late-great music legend Prince. The musical drama features some of Prince’s most iconic songs and killer outfits.

‘Malcolm X’

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‘Malcolm X’ is was Spike Lee classic, portrayed by Denzel Washington. The movie chronicled the life of the civil rights hero.

‘Selma’

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Ava DuVernay made history with ‘Selma’ in 2014, becoming the first black woman to have her film nominated for “Best Picture” at the Oscars. ‘Selma’ is a portrait piece of Dr. Martin Luther King as he led the march from Selma to Montgomery for voting rights.

‘Glory’

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Free black men were conscripted to fight in the Union Army during the Civil War, but as this 1989 period drama shows, not even their willingness to sacrifice their lives for their country was enough to shield them from racism and segregation. Denzel Washington stars in the role that would nab him his first Oscar.

‘Barry’

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‘Barry’ is one of two drama films (of what will surely be many) that take a glimpse at the life of a younger former President Barack Obama, the man who would one day become the first black president of the United States.

‘The Princess & the Frog’

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In 2009, Disney made history by featuring its first ever African-American princess. Anika Noni-Rose portrayed princess Tiana in this film. It’s a beautiful film in which is sure to inspire little girls of all diverse backgrounds that she too can be “A Princess”

‘The Color Purple’

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Okay, so there’s really nothing to say about this one but – CLASSIC!!! – No matter how many times I’ve seen this movie – I always need my tissues….

‘The Wiz’

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‘The Wiz’ in which stars Diana Ross and a very young Michael Jackson is the black version of ‘The Wizard of Oz’ story.

‘Carmen Jones’

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Dorothy Dandridge became the first black woman to be nominated for a Best Actress award at the 1954 Oscars for her role in this epic musical, based on Bizet’s tragic opera ‘Carmen.’

‘A Raisin in the Sun’

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Starring Ruby Dee and Sidney Poitier, this 1961 adaptation of Lorraine Hansberry‘s play is a film about an African-American family search for the American Dream and what happens when that dream is derailed. While the older version is a true classic, the newer 2008 version in which stars Sean Combs (a.k.a P. Diddy), Sanaa Lathan, Audra McDonald & Phylicia Rashad are performances in which you wouldn’t want to miss.

These movies are sure to give you a dose of the richness of the African-American culture and a sense of why we should celebrate this month each year. We’re not just celebrating the culture but we’re acknowledging the people whom broke barriers in every arena which makes us glad to be a part of such an amazing history. You can find other classics listed here. Did your favorite make the list? If not, then what African American movie(s) are your favorite classics? Let me know in the comments.

 

Roshonda N. Blackmon – Creator of A Blog, A Magazine. It’s JustsumInspiration, Author, Speaker & Encourager