Parent How To: Roles In Family – Does The Peacekeeper REALLY Keep The Peace?!

Every person in the family takes on a role. What are the roles? Parents. Oldest child. Youngest child. But I’m talking about the other roles like: I was the family clown. I would try to get everyone laughing. That got me into a bit of trouble in 4th Grade. There was a period of time I would make up stories about what happened in class just to get everyone laughing at the lunch or dinner table. I didn’t realize that mom would bring up some of those ‘incidents’ at the next parent/teacher interview. BUSTED!

All families have the funny one, the peacekeeper, the rule maker, the enabler, the rule breaker or problem child. I know there are tons more terms but I want to talk about the Peacekeeper. In a high conflict family, the Peacekeeper is often one of the children.

And a pattern develops – the conflict escalates. The Peacekeeper steps in. A family meeting is called. Trying to use ‘good’ communication skills, the issues are discussed. Solutions are considered, discarded until one or more is chosen.

And then, everything goes back to the old way until the next time the conflict escalates.

There can be NO CHANGE without new information. If you see your family going through the same patterns time and again it’s time to consider taking a parenting/family class. Yes, family therapy is good except that it doesn’t often incorporate new information – education.

Everyone in the family needs to be able to attend the class (OK, young children are exempt – they will learn the new patterns as everyone else in the family uses them). Everyone needs to be able to hear what the instructor/teacher is saying and get that information firsthand by sitting in the class. THEN a family discussion about what everyone learned and how to incorporate the new skills is necessary. Because everyone shared the learning, the likelihood of the new skills being used is very high. And you’ll see changes in the family patterns.

Step out of the old way. Look around your city for some family classes. Take a look online for some classes. We are surrounded by new information and it is all but impossible to change the way we are doing something until we take in some new information. What’s that definition of insanity: continuing to do something the same old way and expecting different results…

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