The Challenge of Family Relationships

Our diversity dialogue on 2 June at Nokuphila was a small group but this lent itself to a more intimate conversation – the participants chose to dialogue about the challenge of family relationships. In a small group the question I sometimes ask myself as a facilitator is “Where is the diversity?” but we had exactly the diversity needed for the topic.

So many valuable insights were expressed … Keeping secrets from each other eats away at the individual secret-keeper as well as the relationship. Then it spills over into other relationships too. Secrecy spreads. A lack of trust and fear of rejection result in the wearing of masks even in close relationships. It is so easy to get into a rut of poor communication and takes a lot of personal work to change.

The importance of good communication was emphasized throughout the dialogue. A key to this was seen as the idea that “the problem” can be seen as separate from the individuals in the relationship. Instead of pointing fingers at each other in blame, they can together face the problem and make progress.



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