Our ever-changing environment has impacted everything that it has even resulted to people having their own definition of words such as the word “family”. People now make their own definition of the said word based on their own personal and domestic experiences and circumstances. Gone are the old days of having one specific formal definition for the word “family” where it was also universally applied. The word family before was simply defined as a social unit “consists of a male wage earner, a non-working wife, and kids” (Lewin).
It was considered as the simplest form of social organization where each member occupies a position, like being a father or mother to one’s children, husband or wife, the eldest or the youngest child. However, today there is more to the said definition. A family is defined as not only inclusive of the presence of a father or a mother with children but could also be any two or more persons living together regardless of sex orientation and preference but have commitment with each other, share the same values, and pursue the same goals.
This definition may not have a legal standing in our society but various social groups asserted for its acceptance. These social groups would like to liberate the definition of the word family to pave the way for society’s acceptance as well as legal recognition especially for those who are involved in homosexual partnership where a relationship anchored on a long and deep commitment between partners was already established yet are not legally recognized.
I still recognize family as a social unit but I hold a deeper meaning for it.
For me a family is one that molds the character and personality of its member and in his contribution to the society. It is the building block of any society. The strength and durability of any society stems from the cohesiveness of this social unit called a family. As such I viewed family as the main link between the individual and the society. This is where the person or the child first gains experiences in love, affection, kindness, sympathy, and the like. The child gets oriented into the culture of the group, its norms, goals and types of consensus and sanctions.
Indeed, the family is that social unit which has a pervasive influence on the individual’s behavior, even up to adulthood. It acts as the social laboratory which prepares the child for life in the bigger society, and that it is the family which is the first, the closest, and the most influential social group in the child’s life. Also, a family being a social system makes each member, from the youngest to the oldest, regardless of other personal circumstances essential to the working of the said system.
Further, a family is one that provides a child with a fertile ground to build a solid foundation of who he will become in the future. It prepares the child to the outside world and also to the next life cycle. A family is something that is always there for its member no matter what and no matter when. Indeed, a healthy family may not necessarily have a father or a mother or both but it can bring people out of themselves as they recognize others. They heal, bind, and foster intimacy.
They bring the sense of belonging, of feeling worthwhile, and develop a sense of individuality. Members of the family realize their unique dignity. These virtues are often overlooked in families, or are considered secondary or only expressed to friends, when they truly are the foundation of a healthy, functioning family. Reference List Lewin, Tamara. Suit Over Death Benefits Asks, What is a Family? Retrieved March 10, 2007 from http://www. cs. cmu. edu/afs/cs. cmu. edu/user/scotts/domestic-partners/family. html.