A single family narrative is essential to the foundation of keeping unhealthy family legacies alive. Their survival depends on portraying the same, cohesive, story to prevent exposure, repercussions, and responsibility.
Healthy family systems can deal with contrasting opinions, hurt feelings, and disagreements. Family systems riddled with dysfunction and abuse cannot.
Parents who enforce dysfunctional or abusive family systems control or change a narrative for power, while children on the other hand, do it for protection.
My parents will often retell stories to make us look like we were the most ungrateful, horrible children put on the planet. Even with its subtle nuances, every story is designed to make us look foolish, ungrateful, or hopelessly lost.
They have a need to retell stories and construct narratives in a specific way to prevent them from having to take responsibility, or address painful situations they may have inadvertently caused.
Inconsistencies in family stories can even arise among siblings who endured the same abuse, neglect, or dysfunction together.