Defining Family Essay
1920 Words8 Pages
Determining family structure and dynamics as well as defining the family is a complex process. Personally, I come from a very traditional family. Much like the assumptions made by the students in the article Defining Family: Young Adults’ Perceptions of the Parent-Child Bond by Mellisa Holtzman (2008). This is what comes to mind when most people define family; a nuclear family, with married parents, and biological children. However, a family is a complex system and can take on many different forms. Today, in a world of the “postmodern family” the traditional lines of family structure are blurred. Children may come from diverse types of homes, or a couple, married or not may choose to have no children and consider…show more content…
Living with extended family members has also been publicized lately in relation to the poor economy. Young adults who typically lived on their own after college are moving back in with their parents, older adults on fixed incomes that do not go as far as they once did are living with their children. This is a definite shift in the traditional family. Having graduated and moved out on my own prior to the economic decline I have learned to live with less, but having known that was coming I would have considered living at home longer. My siblings have or are planning on moving back in with our parents after college graduation to get ahead money-wise. This is a stressor on not only the individuals as a lack of feelings of freedom, but also an adaptation by the family as a whole that was unplanned years ago. It is my belief that recognizing any family structure or definition is important, as the traditional version may be skewed in so many ways, without knowing or recognizing the “family” that people we run across may come from. We can also learn from other family definitions to build upon our own themes, rules, and beliefs. Adding stigma and prejudice toward families different from our own not only alienate the members, but can add unnecessary stress upon that family system. Stress in any family system can be seen as either an adaptation potential or a negative force. Many effects on the
Relationships: The Four Pillars of a Successful One
As people continue to live life, they form relationships with other people, including family members and co-workers; and also close friends who become close as if they are considered family.
Relationships – the way in which two or more people are connected, by blood, by marriage, by work, by intimacy, by interests, or by friendship – require a lot of work, by all the people included. But relationships give meaning to life; they are a result of people needing each other for various reasons: for emotional support, psychological well-being, love, and affection, etc. But not all relationships are good relationships.
In good relationships, people are happy, healthy and carefree. People in successful relationships are peaceful and get along, encourage each other and are there for one another. But good relationships don’t just happen. They are constructed – even if over time – by four basic pillars. They are 1) communication, 2) commonalities, 3) respect and 4) trust.
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The first pillar holding up a good, healthy relationship is verbal communication. All relationships depend on it. Everyone has needs and concerns – and people in good relationships lessen those burdens and problems. Relationships are based on love, and when it comes down to it, love is something that is communicated among people. Information, such as one’s needs, concerns, and frustrations, is transmitted through people, mostly through verbal communication. This includes the successful conveying or sharing of ideas, feelings, expectations, too, among people in relationships.
Relationships are based on love, and when it comes down to it, love is something that is communicated among people. Information, such as one’s needs, concerns, and frustrations, is transmitted through people, mostly through verbal communication. This includes the successful conveying or sharing of ideas, feelings, expectations, too, among people in relationships.
The second pillar of a great relationship is the people involved having similar objectives. A family co-exists peacefully when each family member wants peace and happiness. Two young people who envision a future together both want the same thing; therefore their relationship is based on, among other things, their goal to live together throughout life on a romantic and intimate basis.
Similarities tend to bring together seemingly different people. When people can work together toward a common goal, whatever it may be, they can be looked at as essentially being part of a relationship – because they were brought together, and connected, by a common task.
Respect and trust, the last two pillars of a good relationship, go hand in hand. People have good relationships with people they respect and trust. Respect, in this case, indicates to a deep admiration for another person elicited by their abilities, qualities or achievement. Many relationships are formed out of respect, at least in non-familial situations. The same goes for trust, the firm belief in the reliability, truth, ability or strength of someone, or the absence of the truth of a statement without evidence or investigation.
In conclusion, a good relationship isn’t simply supported by just one thing, but supported by a number of things. A good relationship where two or more people are connected through something, whether blood, marriage or mutual affection, needs a steady dose of communication, similar objectives, respect, and trust – the four pillars for any successful relationship.
When it comes to relationships among people, the key is maximizing those moments of selflessness and putting the focus on that other person or group of people. This especially pertains to ones with family members and spouses – or would-be spouses. But these relationships would also crumble to the ground without the other three pillars – without trust and respect and commonalities shared and practiced among the people comprising these relationships.
Once again, relationships require constant work and focus and patience – but it’s supposed to be worth it: successful, happy and healthy relationships equate to a high quality of life. Research indicates that people need other people in order to live long, happy and healthy lives, which requires happy and healthy relationships among people. It’s a simple notion, really. But it works – and has always worked.
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