This is the time of the year that family gathers together to share in the magic of the season. But every year after the holidays are over, I hear many people talking less about the magic, and more about how challenging it can be to around family.
A story was shared with me this week that is one that I know many of us can relate to. Grandparents expressing concern over their grandchildren, while the parents feel anger for their parenting being judged and interfered with. The battle that ensues can be ugly.
At its worst, these situations can drive a wedge between people that results in estrangement. The irony is that what both sides do is driven by love, not hate.
Grandparents love their grandchildren, and want what’s best for them.
Parents love their children, and are doing their best to care for them.
When we are able to step back and understand the motivation and intentions of those with whom we are in conflict, it’s amazing how many times we will find that we are really all on the same side and wanting the same things. We may have different ideas about parenting, but we all want our kids to be healthy and happy.
Instead of getting angry with each other, how differently might things go if we all were able to accept that we are all doing the best that we can, honor each other’s efforts, and support each other in one of life’s most challenging endeavors?
After all, isn’t the best thing for our kids to have a whole village of people who love and care for them?