Message Boards

Topic : Your Family Legacy

Number of Replies: 23
New Messages This Week: 0
Last Reply On:
Created on : Thursday, June 30, 2005, 12:48:14 pm
Author : dataimport
Your parents have shaped who you are. The challenge is to identify what values, beliefs, characteristics, traits and behaviors have been passed on to you as a function of your experiences with your parents. What is your family legacy?

As of January, 2009, this message board will become "Read Only" and will be closed to further posting. Please join the NEW Dr. Phil Community to continue your discussions, personalize your message board experience, start a blog and meet new friends.

April 30, 2009, 4:54 am CDT


Quote From: sparkywita

HI there


I have just read your message and you are in a bit of a pickle there to say the least - just want to acknowlede that you sound like a really caring man so more power to you.


Heres a few questions to ask your sister.


What do you want for your children?

How do you see your children's lives progressing?

Do you feel your children are happy and nurtured?

Do you know what your children want to be when the grow up?

Do you feel your children are equipped to go into the world?

Do you feel your children are secure?

How do you rate yourself as a mother and mentor to your children


That's just a few and maybe you could add a few more if you can think of anything.  It is important to get your SISTER thinking about her children and see how she responds and even if she gives some smart assed answers or tries to turn it around to put the spot light on YOU - DON'T say anything don't rile her or try to change her mind - just LEAVE those questions with her because trust me - they will stay with her - and let her think about them when you are making efforts to give your nephews feed back on their behaviour.


In relation to your nephew saying YOU ARE NOT MY FATHER AND I DONT' HAVE TO LISTEN TO YOU!!! hate to say it but he is right!!! ALWAYS acknowledge this to him - say to him "John (just using that name as don't know his name) YOU ARE RIGHT (important to say this and not I KNOW IM NOT YOUR FATHER) I am NOT your father but would you consider regarding me as a friend who is interested in your life and gives a damn about teaching you about how you are coming across to people!  ALWAYS give him space to make up his mind and don't try to get him to answer you straight away.  Say to him - John I am here when you want to talk.  ALWAYS acknowledge his feelings and his situation and spell it out to him.!!  Spell out his good points and his great characteristics too ie say to him John you are a smart good looking young man you have a sharp mind and a good brain ! (say this even if you don't believe it yourself - but just say it anyway) ask him is this the way he wants to be and if not what does he want and you will be there to help him get it.


I would love to know what you think of this advice and hopefully it will be of some help toyou.



God bless


I am thinking that nothing will EVER be right, EVER, pretty much no matter what you or anyone else says or does. UNTIL, that is, the sister (mom) gets medical attention for her bi-polar issue. She is mentally ill. Being mentally ill is not her fault. She cannot function properly without medication, under a doctor's care. I do agree that a lot of her actions are not strictly due to the illness, and she probably uses the illness as an excuse for acting like an idiot. But she still needs help. Address the doctor thing with her, with your parent's present. At the same time, tell her that if she does not get help, you WILL call social services, and follow any and all protocol to have her children taken away until she gets the help she needs and is prepared to be a MOTHER>

my opinion

thank you

April 30, 2009, 5:09 am CDT

Your Family Legacy

Quote From: rgrantham

I am worried about my 2 natural children and a step child that I love dearly. This is  a long and complicated saga so  I'll try to shorten it. I married my first husband when I got out of college at the early age of 22. He was 17 years older than I. My father whom I was extremely close to had passed away when I was 16, I was looking for a father figure I suppose. He had a step daughter from a previous marriage that he essentially had adopted for all intents and purposes. Her mother and he had married when she was a mere 2 years old and she never really met or knew her biological father. After we married, she  became a vital part of our lives and when we had our 2 children, a boy and 14 months later a girl, we now had 3 children to love and adore, which we did. We had many many happy years together. All three children were very close, all recognizing that they had 2 siblings.
My first husband and I divorced when the natural children were 10 and 11 years old and the step daughter was 27 and married with her own children.  That seemed to work out as well as a divorce situation could, my ex-husband and I remained focused on the children's best interest and did a good job, according to those closest to the family and the step daughter who always admired our ability to keep the children's best interest 1st and foremost.
The children grew up so close in age, they were always together, my daughter even went to summer school to graduate early from High School so she wouldn't be there without her brother. They graduated the same year. She married the following year and after living with me and my current husband off and on for about a year, they moved into a mobile home on her husband's family's land near here.  My son had moved into his grandfathers very small house near his father's house and both children were working and attending the local technical college pursuing relative career degrees for their respective fields. Life was good, or so I thought.
Their father was diagnosed with cancer and died about a year and a half later. He had a will with everything covered ....he thought. He had put the house in a "Life Estate" in all 3 children's name. Complications arose with who was going to get the house, as our son was living there at the time, going through the process of purchasing his first home in a nearby big city. He completed the purchase of his house just after his father's death. There was a small amount of money left, but my natural daughter had taken her father during his illness while on chemo and radiation treatments (a little disoriented) and had an investment rep move what monies were left to an account that she was the only benficiary. The transfer was not complete according to this rep as he never got the other 2 names and social security numbers for the other 2 children.
At his death, my daughter wanted to sell the house, she was the one having it appraised a week later, and denied having any money left in their fathers account. To this day, she has not admitted that there was any money disbursed from this account and we have confirmed through final statements sent to his house after his death that there was a small amont of money sent to my daughter. This is the worst, but there are alot of little things that have happened to destroy my children's relationship. I can't say that I blame my son and step daughter for not associating with my daughter, but I sure need help for me as well as them in how to get past this. Any suggestions? How do you forgive and go on in this situation?
Call a family meeting. With everyone there who is involved. Tell them that you want everyone's thoughts on the matter.Take your daughter aside first and ask her if she received any money from her Dad's estate. if she says no, say you have proof, so you would like it if she admitted to this. you would like her to come clean to the family about it. After that. Sell the house and split the money 3 ways. Tell your children during this meeting that life is short and not worth this fighting.  With your daughter's secret out of the way, that is the first step to clearing the air and her conscience.  If the house has already been sold, whoever benifitted from that shoud pay the other's their fair share. Maybe (or maybe not) you have the money and can pay them, then the sibling wh received benifits from the house can pay you back instead. Tell them how much their fighting upsets and distresses you to the very core. Tell them you cannot keep up with this B.S. and it WILL stop today. Period. Tell them you are done, and will not have it any other way. during the meeting, let them ALL talk, let them argue a bit.  Don't let it get out of hand however.  If the splitting the house money does not work, come to a different conclusion. If one sibling  no longer wants the money, make sure they really mean it.  try to get them to apologize  to eachother and end the meeting with hugs and kisses for all.
May 19, 2009, 9:28 am CDT


  1. The reason for the success of Clan of the Cave Bear is that it's about a Cro-Magnon child being raised by a family of Neanderthals--a positon almost all of us have been in.  Lawrence Block


  1. Current psychological theory tells us tha we can be scarred for life by our parents. That's one theory,and it certainly gets us off the hook, Let's take another perspectivae and see where it gets us. What if we drop our perfect family and Leave It To Beaver illusions, instead viewing the family we were born into as the raw material we were given for learning the lessons we need in life. Not all raw material looks good at first and the secret is not in the material: the secret is in what we do with it.


Our families and our childhoods are our realities. When viewed from this perspective, it is possible to see the experiences as neither good or bad -- they just are. It's what we do with them that makes them what they are. We have the opportunity to glean some gems of learning from what may have been very painful or very happy situations. If we choose only to hold on to past hurts, we die withthem. Transformation is in our hands.


Are there issues from childhood you use as a crutch to avoid running with life? Check this out.

First | Prev | 2 | 3 | Next Page | Last Page