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Home : Relationship :
What are Family Values
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What exactly makes up a strong family that possesses good family values? A strong family is one that sustains its members - that supports and nourishes the members throughout the span of that family .

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Value is defined as the quality or worth of a thing.  To combine the words together yields a definition of:  a traditional set of social standards defined by the family and a history of customs that provide the emotional and physical basis for raising a family.   Our social values are often times reinforced by our spiritual or religious beliefs and traditions. 

What exactly makes up a strong family that possesses good family values? A family that sustains its members - that supports and nourishes the members throughout the span of that family.

A strong family unit creates a safe, positive and supportive place for all members to thrive. They are able to utilize resources and to live together in a fairly healthy manner.

The adults in a strong family set the tone. They are good role models that lead by example. They reach out to friends and community and teach their children the importance of doing the same -- and that becomes part of who the children are.

They work together to solve problems, and they pass their skills on to the next generation. Some important elements of a strong family system are family cohesion, family flexibility and family communication.

Cohesion- In families cohesion would be defined as the feeling of being loved, of belonging to the group and being nurtured by it. Although closeness is good in a family unit, there must be a balance between being together and being separate.

A person must be able to develop their individuality, while being supported and confident within the family. A few things that bring a family together are the commitment of other family members, and the spending of time together.

Flexibility- There must be a structure in a family or it will become chaotic and will not be a peaceful setting for a family. Conversely, there must be flexibility or the family becomes rigid and the authority figures become resented.

We could compare a successful family to a democracy. There are leaders, but the whole group is involved in the decision making process. Although the leaders are in charge all members develop the ability to cope with stress, and at times lead.

While the family works to avoid stressful situations they work together to solve problems, without blaming, criticizing and finding fault with each other. Families that tend to have a strong spiritual base seem to have a sense of well-being that facilitates this working together in times of stress.

Communication- Ever hear the saying, "What we have here is a failure to communicate?" A lack of communication can rip a family apart and destroy them.

Things that facilitate communication are the things mentioned so far -- family closeness, flexibility, time spent together, spirituality. All members must feel a freedom within the group to express themselves freely.

Another very important factor is the relationship between the "head" couple. In a family that is parented by a happily married couple, people are able to express themselves more freely.

What they might say isn't filtered through the problems of the "guardians." A happy marriage seems to set the tone in the house. It spills over from the family to the community and a healthy family will be reaching out to help others. They do not tend to isolate themselves from the rest of the world.

A very important thing for families to teach their children is how to make good decisions. If they have watched their parents making well thought out decisions over the years, they will tend to be good decision makers themselves.

Traditional family values that fall under the "love task" include all our relationships.
Things such as how you view marriage and commitment, what role  religion/spirituality plays in your family, how emotionally available you are to others, your beliefs about sharing responsibility, the  common interests shared by your spouse and family, shared activities and hobbies, how family time is spent, how family decisions are made, common beliefs shared by you and your spouse regarding spirituality and religion, how family traditions are established, and so on. 

These are good topics to discuss at a family meeting to help determine how these things are valued.  Often time assumptions are made about what another family member believes or values.  Misunderstandings and miscommunications can happen because of these assumptions. 

A healthy, happy family benefits our whole society. Among the children of strong families their is less crime, less divorce and less emotional problems. They tend to go on and have strong, healthy families of their own, having learned from their folk's example. 




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