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Adult Children Home for the HolidaysWhether you are 18-years-old, returning home for the holidays after your first semester away at college, or 40-years-old with children of your own, being with your family of origin often triggers old dynamics where adult children transform back into thinking, feeling and behaving as they did when they lived at home, and parents often go into “parent” mode.

Predictable behaviors come from a history of ingrained patterns of relating, usually developed at a young age for the child, and reinforced by the parent as a style of interacting. For both the adult child and the parent, these patterns of behavior are less about the person we are in conflict with, and more about the way they trigger us and we make meaning of the person or related event.

It only takes one person to become aware of when an old pattern has kicked in, and then to decide to engage differently:

1. Try a little compassion by putting yourself in the other person’s shoes before judging.

2. Give a sincere complement rather than a negative comment.

3. Listen with genuine interest rather than tuning out.

4. Mend a rift by not having to be right.

5. Forgive.

Love, Health & Happiness,