Spoiled Children of Divorce

June 16, 2008, 5:32 pm
Filed under: Birth Order, Exemplary Children of Divorce, Healing, Myths, Stepfamilies

The Greek Myths are a great resource for learning about Children of D and Step-Family Hell. The Myth of Hercules is a great example.

This is a story about philandering Fathers, Jealous & Powerful Step-Mothers, Loss of Birthright, Dealing with Enemies, and finding Redemption. The story of Hercules’ 12 Labors, or 10 Labors, is often told. The evils that Hercules had to conquer are often retold, the Nemean Lion, the Apples of Hesperides, the Hound of Hades, these are common stories. The motive behind the story is not talked about. That would upset the parents and the therapists.

Hercules, in a fit of madness induced by his jealous step-mother, killed his wife and children and withdrew from the world. In order to redeem himself he had to defeat a list of demons that were decided for him by his worst enemy, the step-brother who usurped his birthright to be King. This was Hera’s son.

Here’s part of the Wikipedia article:

The framing narrative

Zeus, having made Alcmene pregnant with Hercules, proclaimed that the next son born of the house of Perseus would become king. Hera, Zeus’ wife, hearing this, caused Eurystheus to be born two months early as he was of the house of Perseus, while Hercules, also of the house, was three months overdue. When he found out what had been done, Zeus was furious; however, his rash proclamation still stood.

In a fit of madness, induced by Hera, Hercules slew his wife, Megara, and their three children. The fit then receded. Realizing what he had done, he isolated himself, going into the wilderness and living alone. He was found (by his cousin Theseus) and convinced to visit the Oracle at Delphi to regain his honor. The Oracle told him that as a penance he would have to perform a series of ten tasks, or labors, set by King Eurystheus, the man who had taken Hercules’ birthright and the man he hated the most.

Hercules never became King but according to some of the myths he did become immortal for being such a hero.  This is a great story to study and to gain wisdom and inspiration from in order to survive how lousy family life can be.

Here’s another summary of his story, slightly different from the Wikipedia entry: