In the original novel, Frankenstein was the name of the scientist, but most movie audiences perceive him as the monster. But, he wasn’t born scary. It was a lack of love and companionship that made him that way.
From the start, his father figure rejected him. Then, the villagers rebuffed his attempts at friendship. Your neighbors probably don’t chase you with torches and pitchforks, but you may have subtler relationship issues.
The human in us needs to feel like we belong. Try these strategies for strengthening your connections with family and friends.
What Frankenstein Can Teach You About Family
The doctor abandoned his creation just because of the way he looked. He also broke his promise to help Frankenstein find a mate. Without those kinds of challenges, you can probably make your family life much happier.
Use these strategies:
- Communicate openly. Relationships depend on healthy communication. Listen to your partner and your children. Deal with conflicts promptly and respectfully. Your children will learn from your example.
- Spend time together. Make time in your schedule for family gatherings and one-on-one activities. Read to your children before bed and go out on weekly date nights. Have fun and create memories that you can cherish the rest of your life.
- Share responsibility. Work together as a team. Discuss parenting decisions and major purchases with your partner. Give each family member responsibilities appropriate for their age and strengths.
- Provide structure. Daily routines and rituals make children and adults feel more secure. Be consistent about bedtimes and discipline. Follow through with what you say.
- Seek balance. Many adults juggle parenting and full-time jobs. Clarify your priorities, so you can devote your resources to the activities that are most meaningful for you.
- Practice self-care. Staying healthy gives you the strength to care for your family. Eat a nutritious diet, exercise regularly, and manage stress.
- Think positive. Show your love and affection. Remember what you like about your family members and thank them when they do something nice.
What Frankenstein Can Teach You About Friendship
Frankenstein kept trying to reach out to others, and one blind old man did return his kindness. Persevere with networking and making friends.
Try these techniques:
- Focus on quality. A few close friendships are usually more fulfilling than a large social media following. Choose friends who share your values and treat you with respect.
- Pace yourself. It usually takes time to discover if you’re compatible. Give yourself time to get to know each other.
- Be flexible. Different relationships often satisfy different needs. Try reaching out to someone you might not usually talk with.
- Keep in touch. Cultivate your friendships. Call and text each other with regular updates. Set up weekly coffee dates and take turns sending out dinner invitations.
- Take risks. Being known and understood requires some vulnerability. Reveal personal information a little at a time. Be willing to tolerate some awkwardness.
- Give generously. Helping others is one of the fastest and most effective ways to make and keep friends. Remember special occasions like birthdays and anniversaries. Celebrate your friend’s victories and comfort them when they’re struggling.
- Share support. Healthy relationships are based on reciprocity. One of you may give or take more, but you care about each other’s welfare and offer assistance when you can. If you feel like a friend is neglecting you, it may be time to talk things over or move on.
Frankenstein was shunned during his life, but now he’s one of our most popular cultural icons. Let him be your inspiration for avoiding the horror of isolation. Value others for their character rather than their appearance and show your love to your family and friends.