It’s always disconcerting when I find myself chewing over a phrase two days later that someone has, even casually, ( oh, is that ever the case, I hear some say), dropped into the dialogue. Mmmmm…. and then more mmmmm…. till ponder, ponder… clunk.
A slowly dawning realisation that I’m struggling to make sense of it .. no, I mean to make MY sense of this commonplace. Oh.. sure, I know what it usually signifies … that ‘family ‘ bonds us tighter than other ties ( DISCUSS) , though apparently it’s roots lie in the phrase that “The blood of the covenant is thicker than the water of the womb”… which of course implies the opposite of this. Confused …
In TA, we often talk quite mystically about ‘ script ‘ – and how it operates at a personal, family, cultural level – (with the basic idea of of “life script” originally being a very early and pre-conscious life plan that influences the way we live our lives). Therapy , in this schema, is often directed to ‘ changing the script’ and some boldly address themselves to the ‘script cure’. (memo to self – ‘psychotherapy ‘ can be translated as “the cure of souls.”)
Now and again, and after years of therapy, I bump up against my ‘ script’ in a way that is profoundly unsettling, and this is definitely one of those occasions. Why ?
Well, for a start, I just don’t get the idea of this universal statement “blood is thicker than…”, in a world that I observe as being so truly diverse in the realm of human experience. That’s a fairly safe and detached position to rest on. Phew.
Then at a second level, there’s what I experience as I sit with others: hearing their experience of longing to be more or less “attached” to their family of origin; the variations are limitless. And being in this privileged position, I guess I often hear more from those who are seeking to experience the reality of the strength of the ‘blood tie’, when it’s not there, than I do from those who want rid of it.
And way down, there’s the place where it touches me. The place where my inner voice has struggled to speak at all… never mind the telling of it out loud that ” Blood is thicker than water ….that’s not my truth.” A place that has evoked at times sadness, regret, anger and maybe moving now towards ‘ resolution’.