Power Struggles Rob Parents of Power
Power struggles seem to pervade all aspects of life. At the macro level, groups of people have fought each other for control of resources throughout history, and it continues to this day. At the national level groups fight for control of resources, money, and votes. The same is true at the state and community levels. At the level of the family the same process occurs, where individuals–whether they be spouses, parents and children, or brothers and sisters–fight each other for control. Even within individuals, at the microscopic level, unseen and unknown wars are constantly being fought between cells for dominance within the person, which result in life or death for both those cells and their host.
I wish to focus on the family level. Power struggles in many families are almost endless, with spouses trying to control each other’s behavior and with parents trying to control children’s behavior while children try to control parental behavior. The process of these power struggles is often damaging, perhaps even life threatening, just as it is in power struggles at all the other levels. The outcome of the parent-child power struggles is too often serious harm to the parent-child relationship