香山リカのココロの万華鏡:まずは自分を大切に /東京

(Mainichi Japan) July 10, 2011
Kaleidoscope of the Heart: Close family ties important but so is independence
香山リカのココロの万華鏡:まずは自分を大切に /東京

The March 11 Great East Japan Earthquake has reminded many members of the public of the importance of family bonds, but some people feel stressful because their ties with their family members are too close.

In my consultation room, family relations are one of the top three problems that my patients complain about.

"My parents don't understand my feelings," one of them says.

"I don't understand what my children are thinking about," another says while shedding tears.

In such cases, I would like to say, "Never mind. You and your family members are separate individuals."

However, in the eyes of those who have problems with their kin, families other than their own appear to be very happy.

Such a view is just an illusion.

Moreover, there are a growing number of those living alone who would say, "I don't live with any family members in the first place."

I occasionally recommend that young people who have serious family problems leave home and live alone because I think it will be a good opportunity to be independent and self-reliant.

However, they hesitate to live apart from their parents and siblings citing their own financial difficulties.

When I recently advised a woman in her 20s to live alone, she replied, "Living apart from my family is nothing but an escape from the problems I face."

The woman apparently wants to confront her parents and fundamentally solve her family problems.

However, I feel that it is wiser to evade family problems without confronting one's family members.

If you buy time while distancing yourselves from your families, your family problems will naturally disappear in many cases.

Today, people tend to call for a prompt resolution to any problem, but there are some problems that need to be solved over a long period of time.

Furthermore, in some cases, you may never understand or sympathize with your family members.

In such cases, you should not worry about it and instead go your own way.

You can have bonds with people other than your family members.

News organizations recently played up an incident in which the brother of a famous baseball player was arrested for possessing marijuana.

It's understandable for the public to express an interest in the news, but the baseball player is probably resentful, saying to himself, "I had nothing to do with the incident."

Still, does the player have to expect that when family members are involved in any incident, it will make the news and he himself will be asked by news organizations to comment on the incident?

Family bonds are important, but it is not necessarily true that the closer family bonds are, the happier one becomes.

First of all, you should respect yourselves and be independent and self-reliant.

You should build up your relations with family members only after that. Don't think that such an idea is too cold.

(By Rika Kayama, psychiatrist)
毎日新聞 2011年7月5日 地方版

by kiyoshimat | 2011-07-12 03:53 | 英字新聞

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