The Qualifications For Being Family
Uncommon Relationships: Experiencing the Seven Levels of Relationships – Part 2
We call this level zero because you can’t control the family you’re given. No matter what the predicament, as a child we have no control over who’s a part of our family. That means our family is the default relationship and we all have someone we call family and there’s nothing anyone can do about it, for the most part. Family means access to you whether you want a person to have that access or not. For example if we’re family and I need to know something about you, I don’t necessarily have to go directly to you, but rather I can go around you to get information on you and there’s not a thing you can do about it. This is one reason you must love your family. Because we’re family, I know all the people that can put you in check as well. As family, you can’t rid yourself of me even when you don’t like me.
“God [Relationship Level 7] has blocked my way so I cannot move…
My relatives [Relationship Level 0] stay far away,
and my friends [Relationship Level 3] have turned against me.
My family [Relationship Level 0] is gone,
and my close friends [Relationship Level 4] have forgotten me.
My servants and maids [Relationship Level 2] consider me a stranger.
I am like a foreigner [Relationship Level 1] to them….
My breath is repulsive to my wife [Relationship Level 6]. I am rejected by my own family [Relationship Level 0].”
The Thought or Concept:
Family members are grouped into only one level, level zero. There’s no reason to place them on any other level because they’re connected to you without your permission. All the other levels need your input and/or approval.
While this might be hard to accept because normal behavior has led to people blurring the lines, this means when you want to make family something other than family, this can create major problems. Can a family member truly be compared to a friend and would you want them to be? Would you want a family member to devalue you in this way? Think of it like this. Would you want your sister or brother to place some unrelated person ahead of you? And if they did, when is this okay? Let’s talk through this a little more.
If you place a family member on level two – the “neighbor” level, that would mean once proximity changes the relationship is lost. That’s not so with family. What if you have a family member treat you like a neighbor? When other neighbors to this family member appear, you deep down inside believe you have more of a relationship.
Here’s one we see in married couples. A spouse will place mom in an elevated position beyond the other spouse. In this scenario we make mom a member of level six, equal partner, in the relationship. I’m certain this is out of order and creates ripples in a marriage. We’ve seen this scenario quickly ruin marriages. We hear of this happening quite often and it’s because all parties haven’t considered or been made aware of these seven levels of relationships. You see when you place family members on the wrong level or on an inappropriate level, hardships and problems occur in other connected relationships whether spoken or unspoken. Stop me when I’m lying.
So let’s discuss the makeup of this primary level. Not only is it primary, it’s the default. If you never have another relationship on any other level, you’re pretty much guaranteed to have a relationship at level zero. We’ve made it level-zero because it’s the relationship that every person on earth has and it’s the first relationship we come to know as human-beings.
Side-note: I understand that there are some exceptions, but before you think of exceptions, we need to define the makeup of level-zero, family.
Level Zero – Family Has Qualifications That Aren’t Transferable
Level zero doesn’t belong to others who don’t qualify to be in your level zero. What do I mean by this? Family is family, you can’t just bring outsiders onboard easily. In fact, for the most part there are only a few ways you can be placed in level zero: by blood or be born into it, legally added, or agreed acceptance by other family members as family. Family members don’t get to be on any other of the relationship levels. Even though you think a member can be family and a friend it really isn’t the same. I hear people say that their sister or cousin is their best friend. Why in Heaven and Earth would you insult your sister or cousin in this way? When you place a family member on another level, you’re saying to them and yourself that when I get tired of you, I can get rid of you. If they lose their spot on the other levels, then you’d also want them to lose their spot on level zero and it just doesn’t work that way. You can’t alter family status easily and it’s impossible to do it with “blood” family.
Family means access into what made you; this is important to know. On all other levels you’re able to hide and protect different aspects about oneself, this isn’t true on level zero. You already know how family is, they get into your business whether you want them to or not. And whether you know they’re in it or not. This is why level zero is very exclusive and requires some great act to become a member, like child-birth, marriage, and adoption.
The Make Up of Relationship Level Zero
Today, we tend to make this level complex with mixed families, blended families, adopted family members, and abandoned family members. Let’s take a quick peek at each.
- Blood Family.
This type of family member is the cleanest and easiest to understand. Even though you often wonder why you have that one cousin that just doesn’t seem to fit. An example of blood relatives would be Moses and Aaron from the Bible. Although Moses once had an adopted family and was separated from his blood relative, this didn’t change their position. They were both still connected to each other at level zero even though life through a few curve balls.
- Mixed Family (this means cultural mixing).
This type family usually occurs to marriage or mixed cultural offspring. Sometimes you’ll have family members who don’t share the same cultural upbringing or might even be of mixed race of people. Regardless of culture or race, they’re still family and this can’t be undone neither can it be unmixed.
- Blended Family (not truly blood relatives).
This type of family member usually occurs as a result of marriage as well. What it means is that two pre-established families are now legally placed in a relationship level zero status. This is a good spot to stop and think about why a person on level zero should never be on any other of the levels. It brings into play unintended consequences that could bring harm to many.
- Adopted Family (legal members).
This type of family is one that occurred by legal means not withstanding marriage. These persons are made legal-family by way of the courts or laws of the land. The members are no less family than any of the other family types mentioned above.
- Abandoned Family (blood rejected).
Unfortunately this type of family member exists. A person who’s been abandoned or rejected as a family member. If a person has had a family connection based on the types mentioned above it’s hard to deny them a spot at the table. While some try, it’s become very messy and creates a lot of pain. You see this in divorce and when a single parent places her child up for adoption.
I didn’t want that to end on a sober note, so let’s summarize. Level zero is the family level and the level that has qualifications that aren’t easily transferable. Within level zero, there are five types of family membership qualifications.
Today is Friday!
We’ve figured out something about life or the business called life. There’s not much to it that comes naturally or normally. Understanding the various levels of relationships isn’t normal, in fact not understanding them is normal and we’re all reaping the result of this lack of understanding one way or another.
Question: Would you ever have imagined that being family could be this complex?