Have You Been Labelled the Black Sheep of the Family
If you have been labelled the “black sheep” of the family don’t despair a moment longer. Because, in addition to the stereotype of the “one that doesn’t fit in with your current crowd” you are also most likely to have high intelligence, abundant creativity, an industrious and intuitive nature, and possess a great sense of humor.
To coin the phrase “black sheep” or more correctly, the idiom, this somewhat derogatory label dates back to 1882. And way back in the 19th century a black sheep actually meant less coin. Less money for you and your family for the simple economical fact that black wool could not be dyed.
We are usually slapping human characteristics on to things. This can include animals. This is called personification. I am not saying animals don’t have emotions, sensitivity, and a soul. It is just that with the black sheep syndrome, we stigmatize humans.
The black sheep of the family is usually described as being disruptive and difficult.
However, the black sheep of the family is more often that not the most intuitive, sensitive, intelligent, and honest. This honesty, however, gets them into trouble.
If you feel like the black sheep of the family you have probably:
- felt disconnected from others while you were growing up and isolated
- had unique interests that your family didn’t share
- were keenly aware of how dysfunctional your family was
- your siblings were treated very different from you
- called weird, a misfit, and dramatic
- ridiculed and made fun of
Psychological research shows that black sheep are the scapegoat for the family. Individuals would rather blame a child for their problems then dig deep for the truth.
The experience of being labelled a black sheep can be extremely painful, confusing, and lonely.
The Good News
In maturity, black sheep are often drawn to healing, creativity, and driven to live meaningful, authentic and purposeful lives.
Black sheep are usually the ones who break the cycle of family dysfunction.
Black sheep have been misunderstood from childhood. But as they strive to rebuild a life of integrity and truth, the black sheep has been the individual shown to thrive.
Janice Tovey 2023