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Saturday, August 7, 2010

Essay on Family

Essay on Family

Communication, love, and involvement are three features that I feel make a successful family and they should be able to maintain a consistent level of these features with one another often. When you have these features in your family, your family will experience expressions of appreciation by wanting to spend more time together; by having a strong commitment to the family, good communication with each other, and positive conflict resolution. When family members feel they are supported, encouraged and that their personal interests are valued, family interaction becomes more effective. Sometimes people believe that a family can be identified as successful by the characteristics of the individual members, by the characteristics of the family interaction or by the extent to which it fulfills certain functions considered being the responsibility of the family. For instance, if a child went to college and neither of the parents has that would be considered the family success.

The presence of an effective communication pattern is one of the most frequently needed characteristics of a strong family. Communication patterns of strong families are clear, open, and frequent. Family members should talk to each other often, and when they do, be honest and open with each other. Communication is something that is deficient in my family only because in the family that my husband comes from, open communication does not exist. My husband's family is very similar to the family in the piece, "On Going Home". In that piece of reading Joan Didion speaks about how she changes when she went home for her daughter's first birthday, "My husband likes my family but is uneasy in their house, because once there I fall into their ways, which are difficult, oblique, deliberately inarticulate, not my husband's ways." That is my husband exactly. When we go to his parents–Ę home, he changes into this person that is like them, and I hate it, but I have to admit he has gotten a lot better over the years, by trying to be more open and communicate with me.
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Successful families also need to express love to one another. Love is generally delightful to people because love produces joy; the joy that comes when one cares for others, and is cared for in return. Love is based upon a desire and commitment to be unselfish to the people in your family. Love for others and the want to bring others joy and happiness by expressing love to them is an attitude and commitment that families find rewarding. Many people today will agree that the ethic of unselfish love for others is the highest value that people can strive to attain in their family. That is one thing that I noticed about my husbands' family before we married; they may not communicate with each other regularly, but they are very loving towards one another when they are together; that is a feature that balances with others.

Our families, my husband and mine also remind me of the family in the story "Jewish Christmas" because Faye Moskowitz speaks about her family and how they got together during Chanukah - Jewish Christmas when she said, "In spite of all our rationalization, we missed being home with our children, missed the ritual of lighting the menorah, the tacky paper chains, the dreidel game we play". In both of our families during the holidays our whole family gets together and they play games before dinner, decorate the house, and do nice things that involve loving your family and everyone is happy.

If you want your family to be successful you also need family involvement. It can be as simple as sitting down with your family and everyone playing a game or just talking about what happened during their day. Family involvement can be anything you want it to be, as long as it consists of love and communication. My husband, my children and I turn off the television and play a game of monopoly and a game of Candy land on Sundays after I wake up, cook breakfast and do a little cleaning. Reading the Piece "It Used to Be Green Once" reminds me a lot of myself with my children and of my mother with me because the mother in that piece of reading is involved with her family even though, her children think that she shames them when they are together. Yet in spite of the shaming they still love her. I can relate to being shamed as a child because when my mother would walk me to school, she would wait until she got me all the way into my class and say, "Wait sweetie you have something on your face", and would lick her finger and get it off; then she would give me a kiss on the cheek. This embarrassed me all the time because the children in my class would laugh and make fun of my mom doing this to me. It seemed like she would do it everyday. She would also yell really loudly when it was time for me to come home from playing outside. She would stand on the sidewalk and yell way up the street, "Rayshawn, the street lights are on; it's time for you to come inside". I felt that my mother used to shame me on purpose, but when I was older, I began to understand that she cared and loved me. I catch myself doing some of the same things that my mother did to me to my own children. My son may have to go to the bathroom, or at least when I thought he would have to go, I would ask him in front of everyone, "Do you have to use the bathroom?" I am sure that that embarrasses him and I am trying to stop. When the child in "It used to Green Once" talks about how her mother shamed her and her siblings by having a big voice, yelling really loudly and the car not having any breaks, they knew that she loved them and they were grateful even though they were embarrassed.

Family in itself is important; if you want your family to be a successful one communication, love, and involvement with one another is important. Even the healthiest families need these three features to become a successful one.


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