If there are concerns about the American family model falling the to wayside, I think I know where it all begins. The dynamics of fathers and daughters have always been based on little girls who do no wrong and who are the apple of their dad’s eye; that’s not necessarily an accurate ideal anymore, though. These stories in the news today have many of us shaking our heads and saying in perfect time: dysfunction at its finest. Take a look –
Ryan O’Neal fans have accepted him the way he is for years. A bit eccentric, maybe a little strange and certainly less than ideal as a father to his daughter, Tatum (and his three sons). In an interview this week with Piers Morgan, O’Neal made some disturbing comments about his now-deceased lady friend, Farrah Fawcett and the belief he has that his children and the stress they brought to Farrah’s life contributed to her cancer diagnosis. Yes, I’m serious. Yeah, that makes perfect sense – don’t you know the secret cure to a biological problem for one person is found in the psychology of another? And after watching the pilot of their new documentary/reality show, the underlying theme seems to be one of lost opportunity and a traditional parent/child relationship doomed from the beginning. This is another classic example of incredible talent being wasted. Ryan O’Neal was at the top of his game in the 1970s. Contrasting that image to those in recent headlines and accusations of his doing crystal meth with his son makes it clear where the problem lies.
The Casey Anthony trial has been an eye-opener. I understand a law professor is serving on the jury and said during voir dire that he looked forward to bringing the experience to his law students when the case is over. It’s just too bad a professor of psychiatry wasn’t chosen too. Anyway, going back to the dysfunction of the family – how insane is it going to be if Anthony is acquitted and then will have to face her father whom she, in essence, announced to the world is a child molester? I’ve said it before – this young woman exhibits the classic signs of one who was sexually abused as a child. I don’t know if it’s true, but my guess is this relationship between father and daughter is irreparable, regardless of the outcome. And judging by the defense of this young woman, there’s clearly more to this entire tragedy than what anyone outside that family will ever know.
Family used to be the hallmark of this nation. There was a sense of pride people took in raising strong, healthy and emotionally healthy kids. Those days are gone – and sadly, they quietly disappeared into the past with most people never even realizing it. What we’re left with is an entire generation of ill-equipped young adults who only know how to repeat what they’ve been taught.