I do not care who you are or what gender you describe yourself as. But if you are known as a difficult person, I urge you this morning to please humble yourself, and keep your stubbornness, arrogance, incorrigibility, haughtiness, pride, selfishness and stiff neck in check. Such attitudes and behaviours are the common causes of problems and issues in relationships, and create and promote a toxic atmosphere at home.
And we are not even talking about violence or even aggression here. That is a totally different ball game on another level. This is when one partner’s habitual narcissistic, controlling and domineering behaviour has turned the partner into a complete emotional wreck in their own home.
Read: 8 signs you are stuck in a toxic relationship
But it is not just your spouse or partner that is affected by your difficult behaviour.
Toxic relationships also affect children. The reason we have so many damaged young adults is as a result of the loveless, dysfunctional and toxic homes they came out of. Many people like to lay blame for kids going off the rails on the proliference of single parent (usually lone mother) households. I know this from the days of my 2018 Anti knife crime campaign in London. Part of the feedback I got from most people who reacted to the upsurge in youth killings in London in that particular year, was the assumption that young people – particularly black boys who went out stabbing and killing – or ironically, even getting killed was because of the lack of a male figure of fatherly presence in their lives. In other words, if the boys that killed or got killed were from homes with both father and mother, they will not be on the streets, in gangs and carrying out dastardly acts of violence. and while that may be a partial fact, it cannot be the absolute truth. Firstly because there are many homes and countless kids being brought up by single mums who have never been in any kind of trouble whatsoever. And secondly, being from a home with both parents does not guarantee any prevention from bad behaviour. A lot of kids who live with both parents at home also get into all kinds of trouble.
Being from a home with both parents around is not enough. But the quality of the relationship of those parents is vital to the wholeness of the kids upbringing and development. A kid who sees love in action at home and grows up seeing love and affection displayed and manifested, will undoubtedly grow up as a loving, caring adult.’But a kid who sees nothing at home but abuse, violence, screaming, shouting and weeping every single day of his life will grow up either emotionally damaged or becoming a violent, aggressive and controlling adult as a result of behaviours he learnt at home growing up.
One of the reasons I left my extremely toxic marriage was because I was afraid of the effects it was having on my son and daughters. I was really scared they would grow up knowing nothing good or beautiful about relationships or marriage. But by then, some damage had already been done. It took me many years of prayers and lovingly nurturing my kids as a single mum to repair their damaged mindset about relationships and human behaviour. Nevertheless, you can still hear them sometimes – thank God, not as often – talk about the dysfunctional home they grew up in.
Don’t forget – kids absorb and later emulate what they see from their role models. And YOU, are your kids’ first and main role model.
What behaviours are your kids emulating from you?
Good morning world
Wishing you a very peaceful Sunday.