Essay, Pages 13 (3033 words)
By watching television one would think that the family is made up of one man, one woman, children and possibly pets. The family has changed over the years from before today we have a much more unique family life than twenty five or fifty years ago. Society has become more acceptable to change and have accepted the not so normal or traditional family way. As many things with time comes change. The family has evolved and is comprised of many mechanisms that are different from the past.
There are new roles such as multiple incomes from the man and woman, families with partners that are the same gender, couples that are not married but living together, blended families and divorced parents. These are just a few of the many changes the family has gone through in the last two or five decades. Many years ago, woman would have not been the main source of income or even working. Cohabitation of couples that are not married living together and especially same sex partners raising kids.
Whatever the argument may be even if there is one? Our society has embraced the new family that has been made over and changed.
The definition of a family being a woman, man, children and pet have somewhat been redefined by so many alternatives to raising children. Although only a woman can conceive a child if no medical issues are a factor. They have adoption, surrogacy and other means of receiving children and raising them in our society with other means and make-ups of the family.
Social change refers to the alteration in nature such as social behavior or institutions. The social change of families in America and even the world has been altered in many ways from years ago.
When my parents and grandparents were coming up it was the time when the men worked and the women stayed home to take of the kids and the house. During that time divorce was frowned upon or just unthinkable. Those times have changed significantly. Many women today are thrilled to have a career and continue to do the same duties as expected of a mother and wife. The husband has evolved over time to assist with chores around the house. In some instances the women are the sole bread earners for the family and the husband is home with the kids. This could be seen as role reversal.
Many women today regardless of career intensions or simply not having a choice but to work, either way women are more prominent in the workforce and this have changed the family in a huge way. Family success is better defined as the husband and wife working. “In 1950 about one in three women participated in the workforce. ” Today the workforce comprise of forty eight percent women and fifty two percent men” (S. M. Heathfield, about. com, 2013). Even though, there are changes in society with the family and women working and making up almost half of the workforce.
There are ongoing issues that employers and lawmakers need to address because this change of women obtaining careers is on the rise. One issue is the equality in pay between genders. Today most men in the same field are paid higher than women. In our society a high number of women find it more appealing to have a career, be a wife and mother. A significant change that accompanies women that have a career is less time with the family and a lot of times families don’t even eat together due to busy schedules. However, with time and change for some this is acceptable.
Divorce is another change in society in which many years ago divorce was never an option. The family has had several makeovers and divorce is rapid and changing our society in a majority negative way. When divorce is the final verdict the children are the focus if they are involved and this makes life more complicated than normal. A comparison was done with children from divorced and non-divorced families and these are some of the findings. “The Draw-A-Family Test was administered to 108 Swedish children. Fifty four children were from divorce families (27 girls, 27 boys) and 54 (27 girls, 27 boys) from intact families.
The age of the subjects was ranging between 10 and 12 years. Focus was placed on which family members were included in the drawings, the prevailing mood of the figures, and on the tendencies to make profile drawings and to omit hands and feet. The results showed that divorce boys omitted their siblings more often than did girls or non-divorce boys, suggesting more intensive sibling rivalry. However, both divorce and non-divorce children usually included the father and depicted him as being as large as or larger than the mother.
It appears that in this way children express the important role that their fathers continue to play in their lives. The findings reflected a larger degree of family relationship problems in the divorce group. These problems were expressed by the omission of family members and also by the separation of one or more figures from the rest, by hidden or omitted hands and feet, and by figures drawn in profile (Spigelman, G. , Spegelman, A. , & Englesson, I. L. (1992). Here in this study we are finding that with divorce comes risk when children are involved. The study shows that divorced families have more issues than families that are together.
Although, the children subjects accepted the dad’s when divorced there is always the problem of having the courts favor the mom in which most cases they do and I have personal experience with that. There is also the case of alienating the kids from the father or mother. In either case the divorced families are prone to more issues which are a problem to society. However, other studies have shown that there is not a significant difference in the outcome of children with a broken home or not. This is saying to me that if both parents were friends and were involved in a child’s life the child could still am successful with divorce.
Next we have the case of same gender marriage or cohabitation raising children or not. Either way this is a different look for family and society. Today, it is being accepted more and the same gender couples are taken their cases to the Supreme Court to be heard so they can be accepted and viewed as a family just like the traditional marriage of a man and women. This is truly a case of religion belief or non-belief. I can truly state that with my strong religious views and belief in God and the study and acceptance of the “word” which is found in the bible.
I truly believe in marriage to be traditional of a man and a woman. Marriage was created by “GOD” and who we are as men to change what the most high has done! If one is serious about his belief in God and understands and accepts his word this would not be a discussion. However, for the nonbelievers and just straight disobedient followers this can be agreed upon. I cannot find it in myself to condone what “GOD” has condemned. This will be a fight for some time. I can say that if the same gender couples want to be together in which they are anyway. They should call their union something other than marriage.
Nevertheless many have argues over the fact that kids are going to have psychological problems and even mimic there same gender parents by learning to be gay. All don’t agree. I can speak from experience and say that kids are exposed to parents and they learn what they see and what we teach them. In my experience I have nieces who have children from men and have had bad relationship experiences and somehow manage to be gay or lesbian and the children are experiencing that same fate because it is what they have seen or have been taught. This is not healthy for our kids and is a problem but in our society this new social behavior is accepted.
However, I believe this is an extra psychological phenomenon for our children that add unnecessary stress. Children in same sex couples households have expressed “they are afraid of their friends finding out that the parent’s “are gay” or “if they are” can be terrifying. Nevertheless, the same gender families are here in our society and it is accepted and somewhat the norm these days. The next step is to push to the Supreme Court and fight for the same rights as marriage between a man and woman. Another unique aspect of the family is single working women who do not have a boyfriend or husband.
Today many women are growing tired of waiting on Mr. Right so they are taking matters on their own and adopting children. Let’s look at the story of Lindsay Gambini 39, manager of a Manhattan performing-arts center, adopted two children, but not without a struggle. First an adoption in the Philippines fell through. She turned to the New York City foster-care system but was turned down because she planned to hire a baby-sitter during working hours. She was offered older children, but thanks to a shortage of foster homes for infants and her own persistence, she prevailed and got two baby boys, now ages 28 months and 15 months (The, A. P. , 1989, May 14).
There are more single ladies and men adopting children today due to the significant social changes we have gone through. This practice is global and more acceptable than before. Many adoption agencies frown on single parents due to many studies that reflect negative impact on children in single households. This is why rigorous procedures are in place to place a child in a more favorable and suitable home that will ensure the physical and psychological safety of the child that is being placed with a foster parent.
This method has been revamped as more studies have concluded single parents with a lot of family and friend support while the single mother or father is at work will do just as well in society as those with both parents at home. Many couples are deciding to cohabitate than before. Like many of the traditional family norms our society has evolved to the new times where men and women are making decisions to live together and not marry. However, in many cases they decide to have children. This has become a social norm and is on the rise and accepted.
Studies have shown that many people that cohabitate have expectations for marriage and are afraid that they can’t meet the expectations of marriage. Although, not married couples that cohabitate share the same values and duties as married couples. They must support each other and the kids and in most cases they live together. Maybe it’s just a psychological mindset that registers as being okay. This type of relationship is nothing less of marriage. Couples that cohabitate is on the rise and the number of married couples are declining. This is another example of how society and the family are changing.
Many people who refuse to cohabitate have strong religious ties. In a Christian and many other religions the belief of a man and woman to live together without being married is unfavorable in the eyes of “God” therefore being a sin. There are also other stigmas to cohabitating couples. One would be a couple who has a child or children living with them and the male is not the legal or birth father. This is said to have complications that are negative on children in the end. Multiple issues face cohabitating couples that are similar to divorced couples. The comparison is almost equal when children are in the equation.
This reflects any negative presents in a home with children are unfavorable under all circumstances in families in society. Families today more than ever also encompass new measures of support. The family has changed in society today from many years ago. Families have learned to deal with adversities such as low income and long distance support from one parent. Low income families are almost most of the time to proud to ask for government subsidies that will in some form give them better living conditions for a certain amount of time until the benefits are depleted or until no longer required.
When a family does not use the assistance that may be available this will indeed hurt the family in many ways. The children will be affected in several ways such as education and any developmental stage due to worrying about the present living condition such as lack of food or shelter. Other distractions such as a parent being absent due to a distant career. These are all contributing factors that weigh heavily on children that are our future in our society.
Unlike before there are many programs put in place to educate on the living through the absence of a parent or a family in crisis to ensure the children is focused and able to learn in school and advance in all areas of development. Recognizing the need for assistance during these challenging times for children are essential and important. Many programs are in place to ensure that all children have a chance at a happy home to promote positive education while attending school. Speaking from experience in the military my co-workers and I have experienced the unhappy home for our children due to us being absent.
Many kids act out due to them not being happy because of the absence of a parent. This behavior results in negative behavior and education achievement. Over the years the military has become a lot smarter and with the help of non-profit organizations provide the support to military families in assisting with helping our kids cope with us being absent so that they can be successful in their educational development. In closing the family has changed with society in many ways. The family has been altered from its original intent or original meaning. The family as we use to know it consisted of a man, and woman or husband, wife children and pet.
Today our family has been redefined in our society. We have same gender families, cohabitating families, blended families, single home families and more. Fifty years ago women were not working as much or considered in the equation for a successful family. Today that has changed; women and men both are working to make a better life for the family. The woman has increased responsibility although she works her duties as a wife and mother are not different. The husbands are contributing more with chores but nevertheless women are still required to maintain certain standards at home with family.
Some women are the sole provider for their families. The new role swapping is very popular these days. It’s not because men choose to not work several reasons such as not being able to find employment, furthering education and health reasons to name a few. This new area in society has been accepted by some and not at all by others. The secular society and the religious institutions are at odds with what the family is and should be. The conflict is simply the believers and nonbelievers. It is a constant battle and struggle. Although most studies are inconclusive or not published at all in regards to the welfare of children and the family.
All families seem to struggle today when it comes to raising our children who are the foundation of our families. It depends on whose report you read or who publishes first and receives the most notoriety that gives a strong belief or assessment in how our children should be raised or if they will be a psychological mess due to the environment they share with parents at home. With experience and insight on the situation of the new families in our society is the only true measurement of our children and their development and contributions to society.
The families struggle with our new times of the changing family. It is rare that a family sits and eats together due to a conflict in schedules. The time you sit and spend with your family is essential, that is the time the family actually get to speak to one another. Other issues such as poverty and long distance relationships are problematic with families. Especially military, when we are away the family mainly the kids suffer due to the absence of a parent causing significant problems for the family.
With the new and improved resources that embrace technology the distant parent can have a real time conversation with families and also upon return education workshops on how to reaclamate to your environment is available. In covering many phases of the family from traditional to nontraditional studies have shown children have been successful either way. As we accept the new variety of families other than non-traditional as we invest in our children it is vital that we remember to make our home a happy one for our kids.
In all aspects of the family the values of the family in society has not changed significantly from years ago. Either way it is viewed or made up the end result will be the outcome of our kids in society.
- Harper, C. L. & Leicht, K. L. (2011). Exploring social change: America and the world (6th ed. ). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Prentice Hall. ISBN: 9780205748082
- Susan M. Heathfield, (2013). Women and work: Then, now and predicting the future for women in the workplace, about. comguide.
- Spigelman, G. , Spegelman, A. , & Englesson, I. L. (1992). Analysis of family drawings: A comparison between children from divorce and non-divorce families. Journal of Divorce & Remarriage, 18(1), 31-31. Retrieved from http://search. proquest. com/docview/200720010? accountid=3252 Jacobs, S. (2004,Mar 07).
- Children of same-sex couples tell their stories. Boston Globe, retrieved from http://search. proquest. com/docview/40406592? accountid=32521 The, A. P. (1989, May 14). More single people adopting children. Orange County Register. Retrieved from http://search. proquest. com/docview/272371838? accountid=32521