John Rosemond: Overcoming bad parenting - Reading Eagle I was standing in the lobby of an auditorium in which I'd just spoken, talking with a small group of attendees, when a 30-something woman took me aside and told me that her parents were bad role models. One was verbally abusive; the other, distant and emotionally unavailable. She tells me that because of her parents' negative examples, she yells a lot and is often insensitive to her children's emotional needs and asks, "How can I overcome that handicap?" I've been asked variations on that same question more than I can count. The list of parental defects in question is short and predictable: alcoholism, addiction, abuse, a string of failed marriages, lack of affection, mental/emotional disorder, sociopathy and abandonment (or a combination thereof).