Andrew was in a long-term relationship with a lovely, outgoing young woman named Jillian. Raised in an affluent family by parents happily married for thirty-five years, she thrived. Andrew, however, brought up in a single-parent home by a mother who had met with her share of broken relationships, suffered from self-esteem issues.
Andrew was the focus of his mother’s world.
In her eyes, he was the image of perfection and the only dependable man in the world. Need I say more? If you have lived this nightmare you know the direction I am going.
Convinced Jillian was the devil in a dress, Andrew’s mother used underhanded, if not outright devious, tactics to plant seeds of dissension into their relationship. As you can imagine, when Andrew announced his plans to marry Jillian his mother flew into a rage.
Trying her best to convince Andrew that Jillian was spoiled, idealistic, out of touch with reality, and not the right choice for him, she told him he needed to find a “hard-working, down-to-earth” kind of wife. Tainted by the strong influence of his mother, Andrew and Jillian’s relationship suffered.
A parent’s attitude toward the opposite sex plays a large role in their children’s ability to develop healthy relationships. If a mother portrays a negative attitude toward men, in all likelihood, her son will develop a negative attitude toward women.
Like the raging waters of Niagara Falls, the wounds of rejection can easily spill over into the next generation. In the above scenario, Andrew’s mother’s feelings of rejection not only influenced her own relationships but also Andrew’s.
Experiencing firsthand his mother’s bitterness toward men led him to assume all women felt bitterness toward men. Her negative experiences and reluctance to release her feelings of rejection adversely affected Andrew’s ability to have a healthy relationship with Jillian.
Rejection can sneak into our lives through people we wouldn’t suspect and circumstances we cannot control. Rejection doesn’t wait for us to open the door or send out engraved invitations; it simply walks right in. Because of rejection’s total disregard for boundaries, I want to empower you with ways you can keep from experiencing the euphoria of healthy and happy relationships.
Below are a few empowerment tips I want you to remember:
a. Never allow a dysfunctional relationship to become the benchmark or guide for future relationships.
b. Resist the temptation to carry damaged emotions of one relationship into a future relationship.
c. Guard your heart against negative perceptions of the opposite sex.
d. Discern the influence parental rejection plays in your relationships.
e. Recognize how parental attitudes shape your self-image.
One thing is for certain: God never intended relationships to be a source of pain. Instead, relationships were created as a source of pleasure. In our guidebook, the Bible, God clearly outlines His purpose for uniting a man and woman. He joins them together for the divine purpose of enjoyment, companionship, and fulfilling their assignments on earth.
Discover more godly wisdom from Dr. Tracey Mitchell’s article Sibling Rivalry
A national conference speaker, Tracey travels 40+ weeks a year, sharing Biblical principles and wisdom. Her real life experiences – though painful and challenging enable her to identify with the hurting, lonely, and rejected. Whether speaking corporate CEO’s or the homeless, Tracey’s passion for re-writing the lives of the brokenhearted makes her messages relevant and empowering. A frequent television guest and host of “Today With Tracey”, she is an advocate of those having experienced rejection, poverty or emotional abuse.
To learn more about the author please visit Tracey Mitchell