Family Relationships and Holiday Guilt

Family Relationships

Let Go of Holiday Guilt!

It is said that as our soul enters each new lifetime, we choose a new body and new experiences to enter into in order to achieve soul growth. We are also told that our soul chooses the family we will be born into. So every November, as Thanksgiving rolls around, why do we second-guess this? Why do we struggle with difficult relationships and holiday guilt?

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False Assumptions

We are under an assumption that our biological ties are supposed to come with loving, supportive relationships to carry us through life. And we are inundated during this time of year with images, movies and stories of the big Norman Rockwell-esque happy families around the Thanksgiving table. But for many, that is not the case. Instead, there may have been abuse—mental, physical, emotional or all. There may have been estrangement through divorce, criminal involvement or any myriad of things to break down the family unit. Yet, every year  during the holidays, we are told to buy a turkey and make merry. But not everyone can, and for those who don’t want to or can’t, they should be able to do so without feeling guilt. They should be allowed to break the ties that bind.

Willful Estrangement

There is no set time of year that should force you to tolerate unacceptable treatment just because someone is related to you. But somehow, as the holiday season approaches, we are asked to. We do not have the power to fix anyone, but we do have the power to fix our associations with others. Sometimes it’s more reasonable to be safe than to be in contact with a family member. Sometimes willful estrangement is a necessary step we must take to protect ourselves. Yes, that goes outside of the standard message of the season, but just as one size does not fit all, neither does one practice fit all.

Karma and Stopping the Cycle

We are all familiar with Karma: Every action generates a force of energy that returns to us in kind, or what we sow is what we reap. Instead of thinking our Karma is to put up with dysfunction, maybe our Karma is actually that we allow ourselves to move away from the dysfunction? Maybe the lesson is to not propagate the pain, but rather to stop that cycle and create a new family life plan—without the guilt this holiday season and beyond.

A Choice That Liberates You

You don’t need anyone’s approval to be happy in this lifetime. Remember, all of our interactions with others help create our future. So, if you choose to break the ties that bind by not participating in what feels like a forced interaction, or not participating in the way you have in the past, you can find a way to create a new tradition for yourself. Take a much-needed vacation away from the family holiday season, or stay home and start your own Thanksgiving tradition without the guilt. Surround yourself with people, places and things that are good for your soul.

If you choose to break those ties permanently for this lifetime, know that if that choice liberates you, maybe that was also part of your soul’s path. Not sure if you should break the ties that bind? Ask yourself, if the person who treated or continues to treat you badly wasn’t your family, would you continue to have anything to do with them? If not, then you can get closure and release the guilt, and can set your sights on attracting people who can connect with us at the level we know will continue to enrich our soul’s path.

Allow Yourself to Have More Control

This year, allow yourself to have more control over your own life path. Remember that any attempt you make to control other people actually only puts you under their control. Give thanks this year for all the good you have created in your own life (in the little and big things)  and allow yourself to leave behind that which does not allow you to continue the progress of your soul’s purpose in this life—without the holiday guilt.

Accomplish Your Greater Purpose

All families have issues and conflicts, and some are worse than others. The pathway for the healing and transformation of our Karma is not just about our DNA-linked relationships, and being part of the same family is just a small part of our relationship with our soul. Carrying guilt weighs us and our souls down. Carrying guilt for presumed responsibility to fit into a stereotyped “happy family” situation does not allow you to accomplish your greater purpose on earth. And everyone has a purpose. Everyone. Don’t allow anyone to stifle yours.

Psychic Donna ext. 9448

9 thoughts on “Family Relationships and Holiday Guilt

  1. Rosemarie

    Thank you Donna for this article. As we had spoken before about this, you know how much this has hit home for me. After my mother passing, my oldest brother becoming so verbally and mentally draining on me with his abuse and my sister in law just backing him up for no reason. She as well turned on me big time by betraying my trust as I confided in her when I had done nothing to give her reason for doing such. I have been told it is out of jealousy for taking a piece of jewelry she has had her eye on since before my mom passed. The only difference is they severed their ties with me, whether it be temporarily or permanently.

    As you had said, this is NOT my fault. I feel that in order to move forward and toward my mom’s side of the family, close to me here in Florida, and towards the man I love so deeply, I needed to move away from certain connections up in New Jersey. All of this makes perfect sense to me and resonates with me completely. As the holidays come around the corner, I do not feel guilty for not speaking with him but for not having that relationship with my other two loves, my nephews. More of my sadness is more from not having BOTH of my parents around for Christmas. It took many years for me to move forward from my father passing ON Christmas 1996. But you never actually get over it. Yet now I have to face not having my mother around anymore. I know she and he are here guiding me on my journey as I communicate with them all of the time. It does get lonely though.

    But I thank you again for writing this article and for letting me know that you had wrote this. I highly recommend anyone who is on the verge of cutting ties to read this.

  2. Seren ext. 5445Psychic Seren, Ext 5445

    A wonderful article, Donna, full of sound advice.

    I personally live by something I refer to as my 75% rule: If my relationship with someone is positive and fulfilling at least 75% of the time, all is well. Once it starts to consistently dip below that 75% for extended periods of time (barring temporary difficulties that person may be experiencing since we all go through challenging times and need support), then I reevaluate the relationship and whether it is adding or detracting from my life overall.

    If it is more negative or draining than it is positive, sadly I must limit my interaction with or, in some cases, completely cut off my association with that person.

    It’s not an easy thing to do but, like you, I have opted to break that cycle in this lifetime.

    Brightest blessings,

  3. Deb

    Letting go of guilt as a Mom is so hard when they turn on you? I decided to let go even though it is the hardest thing I have ever had to do in my life. To have a Son turn on you that you had been so close to for so long after his marriage, military then divorce, it became my fault and I was not even near them or ever spoke to my daughter-in-law but yet it is all my fault? Wow, depression hit me big time and am still trying to pull out of it.
    Thank you for the Let Go of Holiday Guilt write up for I would love to go back east and see my granddaughters but I know I would be setting myself up as a punching bag/escape goat for others and I refuse to be that to ANY of my family again for the remainder of my years.
    Great advice, thank you.

  4. Tracy

    Thank you for sharing these thoughts. I wonder though, after studying Bowen family therapy–in which complete cut-offs from family members is viewed as it’s own source of pain and not necessarily a healthy solution–if it’s possible to strike some sort of balance here. That is, to both honour one’s own needs, and minimizing one’s exposure to painful family dysfunction by setting up strict boundaries and limiting one’s time in such situations, versus completely cutting someone out?

  5. Psychic Makenna ext 5791

    Donna, you have touched on so many excellent points and I firmly support your suggestions. Beautifully articulated. As the saying goes “Friends are family we choose”.

  6. Erna

    Oh, how thankful I am for you, Donna, for writing this article! “Release the guilt. Being part of the same family is just a small part of our relationship with our soul.”! Happy Thanksgiving to you!!

  7. GM

    I finally had to walk away from an abusive, alcoholic, Narcissistic mother. We had no contact for six years, and during that time I finally got to be the person I was; not the person she tried to force me to be. And I also discovered that I liked that person. My mother and I eventually reconnected, but by that time she was in failing health, and she has since passed away. I’ve never regretted having that six year separation, and had it not happened I doubt that I would be here today.


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