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All over the world the word “family” is defined a little bit differently between everyone. Due to that facture each individual defines family in a way that they have experienced it. According to the Google dictionary, family is defined as “a group consisting of parents and children living together in a household.” Personally I believe family does not have a definition to it, anyone who has a powerful influence in one’s life should be considered a family.
Under “Families: Definitional issues” topic in Chapter 1 of “family communication cohesion and change” by Kathleen M.
Galvin, Dawn O. Braithwaite and Carma L. Bylund, defines family as “the biological ties, as networks of persons who lived together over periods of time supporting each other, and as groups of people who have ties of marriage and/ or kinship to one another” (Galvin, Braithwaite, Bylund, pg. 4). In relevant to the book, at a young age I always believed that family was my parents and my siblings living under the same roof.
A dad, a mom and children who share the same genetic bond is what I had in mind as a definition of a family. Eventually I started realizing that I was forming a strong bond among those who were the same race as me.
When I arrived in the United States I came upon people who had different backgrounds and those who practiced different religions. Despite of their different backgrounds or religions, those people played a role in my life, we created bonds that were unbreakable where they changed and impacted the way that I define family.
later in chapter one in the book it defines family as “a family that involves a pair or a group of people, all or most of whom are unrelated biologically or legally, who share a commitment to each other, may live together, and consider themselves to be family”( Galvin, Braithwaite, Bylund, Pg. 11). There are many ways to become a family. However, my opinion about family evolved over time, I surrounded myself around people who had different races and different religions those that I did surround myself to over time our relationship grew strong they became a big influence in my life and because of that they changed/ impacted the way that I define family.
Moreover, family values are established by trustworthiness, accountability, integrity, and communication. These four values are the ones I believe brings the unity of a family. However, without family values being established in a home, it could potentially bring chaos. Therefore, the importance of “values” can strengthen morals of a person. For instance, the book states that communication can be served as the process of which family members create and share their meaning with each other. Also, members develop a relational culture, or shared a worldview.” (Galvin, Braithwaite, Bylund, Pg.3) With that being said, being raised in a home with good morals can allow me to apply these values out into the world because it is ingrained in my belief systems.
Overall, the term “family” is defined differently with everyone all over the world. Personally, at a young age I had a different definition of family than I have today. Factors such as race and religion have helped me shape to what I now so call my real definition of family. Growing up with values such as trustworthiness, accountability, integrity, and communication are what shapes who I am today. We all have our definition of family, what’s yours?
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