Love and trust, key to a successful family relationship
Love and trust are two key elements that must be in place if a family is to stick together through thick and thin.
This is the view of a young mother of two, who grew up in an adoptive home from birth and has learned the importance of these key components.
Olivia Plunkett says based on the love she received and the trust placed in her by her adoptive mother, she is now a better parent.
"My adoptive mother and father are deceased but every time I remember them, I cry because I was raised well," Plunkett told Family and Religion.
"I would not say they were perfect, but to me they were the best. My adoptive mother showed me how to fend for myself, wherein I now have two kids and I don't worry about a thing. The love that she gave me that's the love I'm teaching my kids, how to love one another. One is eight and one is two and I never see them fight and I pray that they will grow the same way."
Plunkett believes that the foundation of the family should be based on love and trust, otherwise the family will become dysfunctional.
"But to get someone to trust is a big issue right now in families. I think that parents should train their children how to love and care for each other. I have two boys and I watch I listen, I listen to how they talk, I watch their behaviour."
"If I buy something for the smaller one and the big one goes like - 'oh mommy you never buy me this, you always buy him that,' - that's jealousy and it comes from a situation of feeling neglected, unwanted. So what I do I would say Raheem, you're always getting stuff, you know you're getting stuff so whatever you see me buy Sadeek (Sadique), it's because he doesn't have someone to give him. And then he would go like 'ok.' Then I teach him how to share."
"The issue of trust is a problem in families now but in most families, there is always one person who will be willing to make it right, who wants to make it right but then other won't want to, so you're going to have that family that is separated," she pointed out.
Plunkett believes there is a way to foster love and trust among family members.
It begins with caring for each other, she explained.Using her relationship with her sister as example, Plunkett said: "If my sister should come to me and say I need help with this, if I can help her I will, but if I can't I would help her to find that help somewhere else."
"If I don't like something about her I say listen, I don't like that. We get along very fine because we work with our differences. I know what she likes, she knows what I like, so we work with our differences."
"So what you have to say to your family is - listen we're family, we're blood, no matter what happens we have to stick together. Maybe we can't get along, but it's better to agree to disagree. Learn to face the truth. If you're mean, accept that you're mean because that's you, so that others will learn to work with your meanness."
"What I'm basically saying, a family should be based upon love and trust and not negativity because negativity is a poison."