By Chandrama Anderson
E-mail Chandrama Anderson
About this blog: About this blog: I am a LMFT specializing in couples counseling and grief and have lived in Silicon Valley since 1969. I'm the president of Connect2 Marriage Counseling. I worked in high-tech at Apple, Stanford University, and in ... (More)
About this blog: About this blog: I am a LMFT specializing in couples counseling and grief and have lived in Silicon Valley since 1969. I'm the president of Connect2 Marriage Counseling. I worked in high-tech at Apple, Stanford University, and in Silicon Valley for 15 years before becoming a therapist. My background in high-tech is helpful in understanding local couples' dynamics and the pressures of living here. I am a wife, mom, sister, friend, author, and lifelong advocate for causes I believe in (such as marriage equality). My parents are both deceased. My son graduated culinary school and is heading toward a degree in Sociology. I enjoy reading, hiking, water fitness, movies, 49ers and Stanford football, Giants baseball, and riding a tandem bike with my husband. I love the beach and mountains; nature is my place of restoration. In my work with couples, and in this blog, I combine knowledge from many fields to bring you my best ideas, tips, tools and skills, plus book and movie reviews, and musings to help you be your genuine self, find your own voice, and have a happy and healthy relationship. Don't be surprised to hear about brain research and business skills, self-soothing techniques from all walks of life, suggestions and experiments, and anything that lights my passion for couples. (Author and Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, Calif. Lic # MFC 45204.) (Hide)
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I’ve written about whether you want to be “Right” or whether you want to be happy. This is a twist from there.
Most people instinctively think and believe that what they grew up with is the “Right” way, without examining the source of that “Rightness.”
Here’s a simple example that hopefully you will extrapolate from: However your family decorated your Christmas Tree, if you had one (which BTW is an old pagan ritual*), you come into adulthood believing that it’s the “Right” way. However, the truth is that it’s your family’s way.
So many thoughts/beliefs are actually from your Family of Origin (FOO). They are not “Right.” They are simply what is normal to you. Most of that is set by the time you’re a teenager.
So what happens when you come together with a partner, and you bring together two wildly different versions of “Right (which is just your FOO's normal)?”
Hopefully the answer is that your new normal is a collaboration of your two FOO ways. If that’s not the case, do you want your teenage self making your life decisions now?
I’d love for you to start noticing, witnessing, and/or questioning everything you think/believe is “Right.” And please let us know what you come up with.
* Christmas trees did begin as a pagan tradition as early as the fourth century C.E., according to ABC News. European pagans were largely responsible for dressing their homes with the branches of evergreen fir trees in order to bring color and light into their dull winters. But pagans weren't the only people to do this. Romans also used the branches for decoration during the festival of Saturnalia, which took place from December 17 to December 23 in honor of the God Saturn.