Family Relationships

Join other women in the sandwich generation - share ideas and solutions as you learn to nourish family relationships without starving yourself.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

What Charlie Sheen Can Learn from the Tragic Earthquake in Japan

Often, in the face of disaster, we feel a deep sense of helplessness. And the tragedy in Japan evokes a particular vulnerability when we see the pressing and immediate needs for food and shelter.

Many who have lost everything are offering support and hope to one another - their self reliance and resiliency are apparent. One couple in their late 70s weren't waiting for help. They immediately began fixing up their home so they would be able to help others.

If only Charlie Sheen could access that kind of courage to face up to his problems. Are you dealing with a family situation that requires you to step up to the plate and care for your grandkids? Here are some ideas for you:

Maintain a bond with the ex and extended family. By being civil and keeping the lines of communication open, your grandchildren will transition easier if they have to move from one home and family to the other. And it's impossible for them to have too many loving arms.

There will be a huge void to fill. You may be confused about your role now, so don't be afraid to see a family therapist. Perhaps you were a natural when your kids were little, but this is a unique situation. Learning new techniques from experts can make a big difference the second time around. Talking with someone outside the family about your concerns and frustrations can be a lifesaver.

Do what is necessary to maintain familiarity and continuity.
By nurturing your grandkids and stabilizing their environment, they'll feel more secure. The support and structure you give them will minimize their feelings of anxiety and stress. Children are resilient – they'll thrive as you model positive thinking.

Charlie Sheen lost his kids and his job. And the bitter custody battle with his estranged wife is a heartbreaking tragedy for his children. His wild rants and erratic behavior on streaming webcasts are hard to watch and make you wonder what's coming next. Whether his problems stem from a deep hunger inside, a serious psychological issue or habitual drug use, he needs encouragement to examine his life.

Mental illness and substance abuse are major problems in our society today. Community resources are positioned to help out when our adult children, struggling with these problems, require inpatient treatment rehabilitation.

Through all these difficulties, our grandchildren need representation and someone to speak on their behalf. They deserve role models with strong ethical standards, integrity and character. Just as Charlie Sheen, hopefully, will take care of himself in preparation for return to his family, our children need our support as they get healthy enough to come home and raise our grandchildren.

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