The perpetuating conversations look something like this: Jacqueline wants to know what Ashley is going to do with her life; Ashley doesn't know; Jacqueline tells her that she needs to know; Ashley tells Jacqueline that she needs to mind her own business; then the arguing really takes off.This is a cycle that repeats itself virtually every episode.It's a little too hard to let go, boundaries are a little too fuzzy to make out, and each individual's internal processes (i.e.thoughts, feelings, sense of identity) is a little too fused with the other.The prescription is increased awareness about each person's role in these problematic enactments and increased clarity and guidance about how to adapt the dysfunctional aspects of those roles into healthier ways of being.For instance, Jacqueline and Chris need to get on the same page.On the surface, Jacqueline is saying "leave, go find yourself and stop mooching off the family" but below that she is saying "don't go, I need you, and am nothing without you." Ashley is screaming back, "I'm out of here," but below that she's communicating "I don't know how to be on my own, help me." Adding to Jacqueline's misery is a sense of being abandoned by a daughter who simply wants to separate in the normative way that all children must separate from their parents.
Again, this would be able to unfold in such a healthy manner because, theoretically, each individual would have internalized invisible rules about how to go about doing connecting and separating. An enmeshed dynamic, on the other hand, tends to involve a little too much closeness.this is the curfew, this is your allowance, this is me taking away your car cause you crashed it, this is the word 'no,' etc.).