In our lifetimes we will form hundreds of relationships whether they are romantic, friendship, work related.
Although some relationships are great there are some that can be very testing and there will always be relationship conflicts.
Perhaps our first relationship in life is with our parents. They bring us up from tiny babies to teenagers before we venture out on our own. There are a lot of close years together and kids can be real testers of patience.
Kids inevitably push their parents as far as they can at certain stages in life. It’s something we all tried as we were growing up. It all started when you were three and you threw a tantrum because you wanted an icecream – and depending on whether or not your parents gave in, it told you whether or not that tantrum was worth using again.
To learn your limits and know what you can get away with you sometimes have to go over the edge. You know you’ve done something you shouldn’t have but the real lesson will come when you find out how much trouble you’re in for it.
These are some of our toughest conflicts. To fight or argue with someone you know so well, it’s hard to hold back. Your siblings are someone brought up in the same mould, someone you can test yourself against and someone you’re competing with.
Some siblings grow up close and don’t fight much at all and other’s are ready to throttle each other. As the years go by and you leave home you often have a different perspective and your siblings can end up being your best friends.
Patsy and Paul and Alice and Ellie had pretty good relationships as far as siblings go. Alice and Ellie would fight occasionally but it was often only Alice trying to look out for her younger sister. Ellie was at a rebellious stage and the closest guardian at the time to rebel against was Alice.
Teenagers are the worst for rebellion. They start to have a mind of their own and wonder why their parents are still trying to tell them what to do. Hormones are high and tempers flare. A son might go and shave off all his hair or a daughter might dye her hair bright orange.
The key thing for young people in their teenage years is to find out who they are and what they stand for. It is hard for a teenager to come up with their own ideas if they just accept all of their parent’s values and ways of thinking.
Because teenagers are teenagers they don’t take the middle road and establish values somewhere between conventional and radical. No, typically teenagers reject everything their parents stand for and try out new and sometimes radical ways of behaving.
Things do smooth out though as teenagers turn into young adults – it’s nice to know it won’t always be so hard!
We will all fall in love in our lives and we’ll probably all have our heart broken at some time too.
Relationships can become difficult when love is much stronger on one side than the other. This is how most relationships end. You can’t help the way you feel but staying in a relationship if you no longer feel much for the other person is only going to make things ten times worse when the time comes to end it. And if you’re the one who is desperately in love it can feel like your world has come crashing down around you.
You have to pick yourself up and move on. It can take a while and you might find you start blaming yourself – but don’t! There are always many factors in a relationship breakdown and they can’t all be your fault!
May and Salene have had a difficult relationship. It has been confusing for both of them. They shared a common bond in Pride. They both loved him and it had caused a barrier between them for months. May was extremely jealous of Salene. She had loved Pride but he hadn’t loved her back and there was nothing she could do about it. Now he was with someone else and all May could feel was hate.
But when Pride died it brought down the barrier between the two girls and they were both able to share their grief and they knew how each other was feeling.
Grief and disaster can bring out all sorts of feelings in a person. In this case May suddenly felt very close to Salene. She’d never really connected with any of the other Mallrats and had always felt a bit of a loner. With grief bringing the two together in comfort, May realised she had more feelings for Salene than she thought.
Salene had just lost the love of her life and when she realised that May was interested in her she became angry and embarrassed. It wasn’t what she wanted and she didn’t want to hurt May. She thought ignoring the problem might make it go away.
Eventually the conflict had to come and Salene put May on the straight and narrow – she wasn’t interested in her in that way and that’s just how it was always going to be. She valued their friendship and that’s all she wanted.
Starting a new job can be scary. You’re thrown into a whole new situation with a group of people you’ve never met. There are bound to be personality clashes somewhere. We’re all born with our own personality and we grow up with our own values and beliefs. But this doesn’t mean everyone thinks the same as you.
Just as you may have fought with your brothers and sisters and fought with your best friend over the cutest boy or girl in class, you’re bound to have differences in the workplace too.
There’s an underwritten rule at work – If you want to keep your job then you should do your job well and cause as little conflict as possible. You’ll find a lot of people are very different at their place of work than they are at home. At work you just have to put up with people and jobs you don’t like or you have to deal with them in a proper adult way. By now your tantrums you threw at three years old aren’t going help.
We’re constantly building new relationships and ending old ones. From your local storekeeper down the road to your best friend. Not all of them are going to be a success but each one will teach us something and as we get older and wiser we’ll be better prepared to handle the next one.