What Your Family Tree Can Reveal About Your Love Life

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What Your Family Tree Can Reveal About Your Love Life
Stop recreating negative family relationship patterns.Trace Your Family Tree to get to the roots.

Have you ever taken the time to trace your family tree? Knowing about your heritage may help you understand yourself better and gain insight into why you have chosen your path in life. If you had an illustrious relative perhaps you imagine that you might have inherited some of his or her outstanding qualities such as bravery, artistic ability or intelligence.

But what if your ancestor was a black sheep? Learning about family histories and hearing stories about ancestors' behaviors and achievements may have impacted your love life! Exploring your roots can help you understand your track record when it comes to success in love.

As you were growing up you might have heard about your relatives or even experienced what was going on in your own extended family of grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins. As a result you most likely made decisions about what a family was like, how married people treated each other, how siblings treated each other, how men and women treated each other, and how husbands and wives acted toward each other during good times and bad. The impact of these decisions may be reflected in your own relationship history.

Here is how to make a Genogram of your own Family Tree. Take two large sheets of paper, one to represent your mother’s family and the other your father’s family. Put the names of the oldest generation that you know about at the very top. For most people it will be your grandparents, however you may find that you have lots of information about your great grandparents or even farther back. For the sake of clarity draw a square shape to indicate males and a circle for females.

Underneath the names of your earliest ancestors draw a line downward from that couple to indicate their children by name and the name of that person' s spouse next to them. If any of these people had more than one husband or wife due to death or divorce be sure to show all of them.

Under that couple write the names of their children and their husbands or wives. Then show their offspring and spouses and so on. Keep the tree going until you come to your generation. Be sure to put yourself on the chart with your siblings.

Have you ever wondered what impact the people from these past generations have had on your relationship choices? Here are some questions to guide you in your exploration. Start at the top of the Tree and go down as you ask these questions about each person or each couple.

• What kind of personality did this person have?
• List positive and negative traits, achievements or other background information about each one.
• Who did he or she marry? Was there a story about this?

• Did he or she have more than one mate?

• How long did they remain together?

• What stories have you heard about their relationship?
• Were you named after one of these relations? If so, what decision did you make about carrying the same name?

• Were you told that you look like a family member or act like that person? How does this affect you?

Article contributed by

Gloria Arenson

Marriage and Family Therapist

Gloria Arenson is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, Diplomate in Comprehensive Energy Psychology and author of 7 books. She is passionate about helping people help themselves to be free of negative emotions and compulsive behaviors. Her motto is :"The unexamined life is not worth living."

www.GloriaArenson.com

Location: Santa Barbara, CA
Credentials: DCEP, EFT-ADV, MFT, MS
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