The Characteristics of Dysfunctional Family

Imagine the mental condition of a child brought up in a dysfunctional family. When problems such as parental negligence, rigidity, alcoholism or abuse exist in the family, the smooth functioning of the family is disturbed, leading to constant conflicts, fights, arguments, and tension.  Dysfunctional family problems that last for years come to seem normal, many people from dysfunctional families don’t recognize what makes their family dysfunctional. The specific reasons for a significant dysfunctional family are as numerous as the families that experience it.

Characteristic #1 – Addiction

Characteristic #2 – Control

Characteristic #3 – Unpredictability and Fear

Characteristic #4 – Conflict

Characteristic #5 – Abuse

Characteristic #6 – Perfectionism

Characteristic #7 – Poor Communication

Characteristic #8 – Mental Illness

Characteristic #9 – Lack of Privacy and Independence

There is an overall climate of instability, unpredictability and fear. Home is supposed to be a safe place where one finds comfort and support, but in a dysfunctional family, home can often be a place of terror, intimidation, yelling, fighting, crying, chaos and craziness.

There are poor boundaries or no boundaries. Kids don’t have the security of limits. They don’t learn how to respect someone else’s personal space, or know when their own space is violated. They don’t learn what is appropriate and what isn’t. They don’t have a clear sense of what is expected of them. They can’t determine if their behavior (or someone else’s behavior) is “over the line” if there aren’t any lines. They have to guess at what “normal” is. There is no clear guidance or direction provided for them to help them successfully navigate their way through life.

There is a lack of structure or cohesiveness. Rules are inconsistently enforced or can change unpredictably.

If you were raised in a dysfunctional family the best thing you can do is to forgive, and realize that not all people are alike.  If however you find that it has a negative impact on your day to day living and you are not coping given the way or environment you were raised in, I strongly advise scheduling an appointment with me at

No person should endure nor forced to live with those haunting memories. Together we can explore healing methods for you or your family to regain trust and find ways to deal with the things you feel are impacting your life in a negative way on a daily basis.

Follow by Email