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Coping with love/hate feelings toward loved ones

Coping with love/hate feelings toward loved ones

Are you troubled by complicated feelings toward parents and/or siblings?

Family relationships are frequently rife with confusingly opposite emotions of love and hate followed by guilt. This whole complex mix is then typically tied up with lots of self-judgment. Finding a way to allow, accept, and deal with these thorny inner and outer emotional mazes is a real challenge.

Here’s the tip: First, remember complex emotions are normal! Childrens’ mixed feelings of love, anger, envy and guilt arise toward parents and siblings just in the ordinary course of childhood. Since most parents don’t know how to help kids cope effectively with these contradictory emotions, the conflicts get suppressed where they may unconsciously wreak havoc with well-being for decades.
See if you feel ready to face some of these complicated feelings. If yes, Take it slow. Be tender. These emotions may initially feel as overwhelming as they did when you were little. Find a supportive shoulder or ear. Seek professional help if necessary. You don’t want to be alone on this inner journey.

Next. imagine telling your inner little one that “Of course, you are angry and want revenge on mom/dad/sister/brother when they hurt you. And of course, you feel guilty about those feelings because you also love and yearn for connection with them. That’s all normal”. See yourself holding your inner child – beaming love and acceptance as you become for yourself the good parent you always needed.
Finally, welcome yourself into the human race. You are a normal, healthy human being…facing the typical, complex love/hate/guilt emotions all people face in family relationships. No Blame. You are okay.

About The Author

Penelope Young Andrade

Penelope Young Andrade, LCSW is a licensed psychotherapist, founder of the San Diego Center for Psychosynthesis, and founder of Transformational Talk Radio. 858-481-5752

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