Wednesday, November 28, 2012

When Family Abandons You-An Update

I wrote a blog post a few years back entitled "When Family Abandons You."  It was about my experience with my father leaving and turning half the family against the other half and the grieving process that one goes through in such a situation.  This has, over the years, been the most popular post I've ever written.  Isn't that terrible?  It is a sad state of affairs when more people find our website because of family abandonment then that they want a thanksgiving turkey.

I wanted to post a little update to this article.  Since this very sad time in my family, I have been working hard to create an environment that pulls together the family that I have left.  My sister and her husband have since moved to the ranch and some of my cousins will hopefully (cross our fingers) be moving here next year to help with our farmstay that we plan to have in full swing (meals, horses, activities of all sorts) by June of next year.

As the grieving process comes to a close (five years this June), the family (or at least the half of the family that didn't turn against anyone) is closer than it's ever been and I feel like I have a bigger family now than I did before my father left.  It will always be sad and I still pray every night that my dad and, especially my little sister, will someday be able to re-establish a relationship with us.  This is not something that ever goes away, but it is something that becomes less and less painful over time.

For those of you who search about family abandonment, I just wanted to let you know that there's hope at the end of the grieving process if you put effort into improving your situation.  That is nearly impossible in the beginning, but as the pain fades (year 3) you can really start reaching out to family that you have left.  Even the family that you don't know.  You can re-establish old relationships and establish new ones.  If you have no family at all, then reach out to friends, new or old.  You can create a family you never had, but you will most likely be putting out all the effort at first.  People only want relationships that they get something from, nothing wrong with that -it's human nature.  So give emotionally to those around you and they will want a relationship with you...and then they'll start giving back.