The Recovery From Unhealthy Relationships


A person's identity will be negatively affected when he or she grows up in an unhealthy family environment. What is the way out for an adult who has been damaged by a dysfunctional family?

There are four realities that are present in the stressed out or very unhealthy home:

  •  People do not know who they are or they have a false picture as to who they are
  • They do not sustain their relationships through deep affection
  • Defenses are used repeatedly
  • Happiness skills are minimal.

When the four realities of an unhealthy family are present, a person’s identity, or the instinctive picture a person carries in the heart, is negatively affected.  It can be affected in one of two ways.  The first way is that the person will not have a clear, nor positive, picture of who he or she is within the heart.  In a chaotic home neither accurate nor appreciative insights are shared.  That being the case the individual at the very best will not have a clear sense of personhood.  At worst, he or she will have a deeply negative instinctive view of who he or she is.

The way out for the adult who has been damaged by a dysfunctional family is to be re-parented by God the Father.  Many adults in the world have to discover the characteristics of God the Father as a good “Dad.” Through learning how to have a personal relationship with God, they will have the opportunity to be encouraged, sympathized with, and confronted with kindness, so that the adult ends up with the mind of a sophisticated adult, but the joy of a child, setting the heart free.  That is what Christianity means by salvation.  The first step in being re-parented by God is to believe in God, that Jesus, the Son of God, died for our wrongdoing, was buried, and rose from the dead.  The death He died was a true loss of life, and the resurrection was a true return to life.  The resurrection shows that God the Father was pleased with what His Son had done.  Out of that pleasure, God will make right anyone who trusts in his Son.

After an act of trust in Jesus Christ, the Father in Heaven will begin the process of re-parenting the adult.  If the new Christian participates in the process intelligently, progress should be fairly rapid.  If the Christian refuses to participate in a healthy way, God the Father will be faithful and continue the process. Because that is what good dads do. 

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