Ask Fred > Family > How do I deal with an unhealthy situation?

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Dear Fred

Proverbs states that if you teach a child in the way that he should go, when he is old he will not depart from it. What happens if a child was purposely instructed to pursue sick and dysfunctional values? I was raised by a father who instilled in me that my main purpose in life was to work and pursue lustful pleasures. I spent an enormous amount of time as a young boy and young man with my dad working in his business. He was deep into pornography and alcohol and prohibited me from reading the bible or attending church. School sports and other school activities were of little value to him and could I not participate as it interfered with working in his business. It got to the point where my dad wanted me to commit incest with my mother. My challenge is that though I do not wish to go the same direction as my father. His values and lifestyle is all that I had modeled and instilled in me. I go into a deep depression as I feel like I am fighting not to go in the way as I was trained as a child. How do acquire a new vision for my life? How do I honor my dad? I am deeply hurt for what he exposed me too and especially his anger, emotional and physical abuse towards me when I expressed a difference of opinion as a young boy.

Fred's Response

If I had raised our son as you had been I would not expect him to honor me nor to follow my destructive life-style. I don’t think he raised you in the way you should go and I think you will find real freedom once you accept Christ and are forgiven of your sins. I am sorry you had such an unhealthy childhood.