Diffusing Faulty Family Members

Yesterday on Your Caregiving Journey, Anna Stookey shared coping tips to use with faulty family members, those members who just find fault with everything. (You can listen to our show via the player at the bottom of this post.)

In other words, Anna shared strategies to get out of the way when family members turn into tornadoes. Her suggestions:

1. Our tendency is to get invested in their fault-finding by reacting (placating or blaming, for instance) which can feed the faulting.

2. Consider the faulty-finder's story. Fault-finders can be looking to gain control. When you see that as a cry for help, you can diffuse the situation.

3. When someone is feeling less about themselves they may ask us to feel less about ourselves. Choose to stay full, including full of compassion.

4. Manage the emotions of the experience rather than engage in the battle of the words. Caregiving is full of mystery; it's also full of a deep pain. It's important to ask: What's the pain here for us?

5. You also can say: It's difficult for me to talk with you when you seem to find fault. How can we work together better?

6. And, for those faulty family members who also don't help, ask: Is it hard for you to not be more involved? Then, wait for the answer.

How do you manage the faulty family members in your life?

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