Anne Lyken-Garner, a freelance writer, writes mainly on subjects of family, relationships, frugal living and lifestyle. Anne authored the inspirational memoir, Sunday’s Child.
Can we love ourselves enough to create a better life than our childhood upbringing?
Ponder on the following by Anne.
Like a lot of families from South America, mine is scattered all over the world. And like many families whose members live in different places, we stay informed with what’s going on in each other’s lives by updates and pictures posted on Facebook.
I live in England and my father, in Canada. I’ve never really had a relationship with him but when he eventually joined Facebook we became ‘friends’ there. I have a half-sister living in Guyana and one day I noticed she’d posted quite a disturbing status update on the site. I was concerned not because of what she said, but because it determined her very fragile state of mind. This particular sister has had a pretty tough life and has been extremely affected by our Father’s misinformed idea of ‘parenting’.
Of course, Facebook is not the forum through which someone should express their innermost feelings. I absolutely believe this. However, sometimes when people believe they have no one to talk to, they feel a little lighter unburdening their souls onto whomever may be listening. Social networks such as Facebook seem to be popular avenues for this sort of unburdening.
My sister left a short message (to paraphrase) saying that ‘people’ should take care of their own kids instead of leaving messages for and debating about politics and religion on Facebook; giving more valuable time to strangers than they give to their own offspring. I saw this message, knew who it was directed to and ‘liked’ it. The next day my father, after having (obviously) seen the status update, ‘unfriended’ my sister for posting it, and me, for liking it. In doing so, he’d proven my sister right. Not concerned with how his own children felt (whether rightly or wrongly) he’d proven that he had more time and value for strangers than he did for them.