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The Importance of Family Relationships
Sylvia Browne Talks About Family Relationships Psychic Sylvia Browne, World-renowned Psychic Sylvia Browne pictures by Sylvia Browne

Today, on the eve of Mother's Day, I’m going to explore our much deeper relationships – our family. These are the ones that really brand our souls and impact our entire lives. This, or course, brings us to our families.

The Parent-Child Connection

They say that we learn about love from our parents. In my case, however, this wasn’t entirely true – I was taught about it by my grandmother Ada and my father, but certainly not by my mother. It’s true that she grew up in an age when women didn’t have much choice except to get married and have a family, and they usually had to go directly from their parents’ homes to do so. Of course, things in my time weren’t that different. In fact, I remember these two girls from my high school who got an apartment together after graduation. They were branded as “love girls” and they never did get married.

My mother was a very unhappy person, and I realized early on that she was also a prescription-drug addict. I think that’s why to this day I have trouble with painkillers and even Novocain. It seems almost too coincidental that about the same time I realized that my mother needed her “pills” (I was about 12 years old at the time). I became allergic to penicillin. It continued from there, to the point that even today I’m sensitive to m any drugs that others commonly take.

I think that we make ourselves predisposed to “family weaknesses” by telling ourselves that we inherited them. Yes I believe that addictions are illnesses, but they can be overcome if we’re aware that we picked them as tests for our spiritual growth. It’s almost too easy to say, “I come from an alcoholic family; therefore, I’m an alcoholic too.”

Recently, for instance, I met a man in a restaurant who said that his parents were alcoholics, so he was one as well, I said, “No, that’s what you chose to do. Even more important, if you knew that they were alcoholics, then you could have gotten counseling to help your supposed genetic weakness.” Then I went further by telling him, “And since your parents both died of liver failure, that’s not a great thing to emulate.”

He subsequently tried to use my philosophy against me by retorting, “But I probably picked that, too.”

“No,” I replied, “you picked it to overcome disease, not to go off track by using it as an excuse to drink.”

He sat there quietly for several minutes, and when the waitress came over, he declined another drink. I’m sure that our exchange didn’t instantly fix him, but what we can do in life is plant seeds – some take root and some don’t, but we shouldn’t let that stop from putting them in the ground in a loving and caring way.

My mother was a victim and a martyr, and she used me to keep my father around. I was the apple of his eye, so her favorite theme was this, “Go cheer Daddy up so that he’ll be in a good mood.” I resented it, but it served me very well in years to come in that I learned to be a performer at a young age.

Mother was never given to affection or words of love – only criticism. I was too tall, my hair was unruly, and she resented me for making my father happy (even though she was the one who asked me to do so). I knew very early on that I was in a no-win situation with her, so rather than dwell on all the hurt I could have sustained, I shut her out and gravitated toward the warm love of my grandmother, uncle, and father.

Now you can choose to carry around one or both of your parents’ mistakes, or you can use them to become a better mother or father yourself. If you don’t turn your life’s negatives to positives, you spend your days not learning…and you end up spiritually bankrupt. Personally, I took what my mother did and how she was and turned it into everything I didn’t want to do or be.

In other words, many times we should actually be grateful to such negative entities because they can help us grow spiritually – they strengthen our souls and make us better human beings. Yet too often people use a challenging home life as the excuse to be abusive, or they spend their days feeling martyred. What a royal waste of time! On top of that, everybody gets tired of hearing about how abused they were and how they used this as an emotional crutch year after year. No one escapes rejection or pain; it’s what we do with it that makes our spirits grow.

Mothers and Daughters

Although the relationship between my mother and me didn’t work out, I’ve seen so many beautiful mom-daughter connections. After losing her mother, one woman even told me, “She was my best friend.” Yet some women have never been taught to bond. Men seem to do it with ease, but we women have so m any emotions flowing that it’s sometimes hard for us to find a common ground. This isn’t a criticism; it’s merely the way we’re made. Girls are close to their mothers when they’re young and then transfer their feelings to their fathers (if he’s around). This is normal and healthy because it shows that the female is trying to balance herself between the emotional and linear intellect. The mind searches to duplicate itself with a balance of both male and female, and this is especially true with young children.

There’s a definite sense of vying for position with the mother that often happens…especially during the teenage years. If you can bite the bullet at this time and be a loving friend or spiritual light to your daughter, you’ll get through it. You might get a little battered in the process, but you’ll be stronger for it. Ladies, as you’re reading these words, honestly remember how you were at that age – trust me, it will make things easier.

Mothers and Sons

Now let’s move on to the mother-son relationship. As we’ll see, this tie can be less stressful thanks to the opposite-sex connection. The relationship between mother and son can certainly be complex, but it’s usually not as emotional as that of the two females. You may say I’m prejudiced because I raised boys, but I also had a foster daughter named Mary who lived with us from the time she was 6 until age 22.

The old saying “A boy is a son  until he takes a wife, but a daughter is a daughter all of her life” can be true in many instances, but even in my readings, I find that eight times out of ten, boys stay close to their mothers. This simply proves that women are more resourceful and independent than we give them credit for. Of course I’m not trying to say that we’re creating a bunch of mama’s boys, but since men have been tribal from the beginning of time, it’s natural for them to try to keep the clan together.

More often than not, if mothers ask their sons, “But if you do it this way, wouldn’t you have better results?” it will reap greater rewards than barking, “This is wrong because I say so!” In this way, you’re giving them suggestions to see the logic, rather than your being the controlling matriarchal figure. Brutal enforcement never works; it only demeans the individual, especially if he’s male. To hit or abuse in any way is never, ever acceptable for anyone, it simply teaches boys that things are acquired through physical violence…and the world has had enough of that.

And as I used to tell my high-school girls when I was teaching, males are far more sensitive than we give them credit for. Once upon a time they could be warriors, hunters and builders; today, most men can’t. Their primordial instincts have been squelched by modern-day office structures, and their egos have become quite fragile in the process.

Mothers also can’t treat their boys like alien beings or blame whatever negative relationships they’ve had with males on them. Rather note that there can be a real camaraderie with sons…a true and caring friendship. I’m sure that it was tough for my boys in the early days to have a psychic mother on television. They got a lot of teasing at school, more than they realized that I knew.

Sylvia Browne is without question, "America's #1 Psychic," an internationally known psychic and medium.

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By Tyler, Saturday, May 09, 2009 05:45:01 PM
By dawn, Saturday, May 09, 2009 05:20:06 PM
Hi Sylvia, I am, and always have, followed the path that you took. Learned from my mother's issues. I did not take her issues as my own and I knew at an early age also, that I did not want to be what she had become, so I made sure that when I had children, they saw what a mother was supposed to be. God Bless and Happy Mother's Day!
By Sherry, Saturday, May 09, 2009 04:52:47 PM
Sylvia you are an inspiration. My daughter(12) and I both love you so much. Thank you for all that you give! You are so much more appreciated than you can imagine. And by the way, I think you turned out to be a great mother considering your obsticles. If we all could follow this path, the world would be such a better place. Happy Mother's day!
By stella, Saturday, May 09, 2009 03:39:11 PM
hi sylvia,have a nice mothers day.thanks for posting your been a blessing to me.thanks stella
By LaVonne, Saturday, May 09, 2009 03:28:06 PM
Thank you Sylvia for this wonderful article:-). Even at age 70 I realize one doesn't stop learning about life. My "should have been a boy" growing up period has influenced my need to answer the question I asked over and over again:"Why?" Now married 50 years and with 1 boy and 1 girl, and 2 grandchildren I have come to understand my parents/family. And, most important I have come to peace with all and with God/Mother God. Again thank you, Love, LaVonne N.
By Debora, Saturday, May 09, 2009 03:03:54 PM
Happy mothers day sylvia and to all moms! Having raised my daughter as a single parent we went through so trying times in her teen years but we made it. I am proud of who she has become a very nice caring young women . She is now a soon to be mom and I wish her the best, parenting doesn't come with an instruction book and there are hard decisions to make, but she has a good foundation to build her new life as a parent from and I know she'll do great. Loved the article!! Debora
By Nancy, Saturday, May 09, 2009 02:49:26 PM
Dear Sylvia, You words on Mother's day really hit home. My relationship with my mother was terrible even up to the day of her death. I wanted a relationship and it took me years to understand that having grown up without her mother from the age of nine and a father who was a strict Methodist minister, she did not know how to love, because she never felt loved. I only hope that she realized before her death that I did love her.
By Sharlene, Saturday, May 09, 2009 02:36:46 PM
Happy Mothers day Silva! Thank you,deep down I knew I wanted a close relationship with my daughter and for 22 years we have had that now she is getting married and she has said that she knows even when she gets married she can depend on ower friendship
By Lillian, Saturday, May 09, 2009 02:36:18 PM
By Donna, Saturday, May 09, 2009 02:36:11 PM
Dear Sylvia, Thank you for the light you bring to this earth school. In accepting responsibility for my life, I know I chose my extremely abusive Mother to teach me things I might not have otherwise learned. I have grown in important ways such as humility, kindness and above all forgiveness. As I grew in wisdom I have thought perhaps she is a great soul from the other side that agreed to accept this abusive role as my Mother so that I might learn. This would have taken a kind of courage I cannot imagine, agreeing to come in and "play the heavy" from day one. I have a lot of gratitude to her for teaching me such hard lessons. She is 89 years old now and lives in an Adult Foster care home with 4th stage Alzheimer's. She is still abusive & is mean to the caregivers. I help her out financially and pray for her well being until she can cross over and go home to live in God's light & love. Forgiveness really is a great gift we give ourselves, and I pray my Mother's soul will never be burdened by her past deeds. When she is released to go into the light, I pray she will soar to the highest place possible.

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