Family Matters

Family Matters

News: Recently, The International Day of Families (May 15th) was celebrated.

 The importance of family gains more prominence especially when we see the increasing cases of murders of live-in partners, news items about family feuds leading to violent attacks on spouses or other family members and suicide among aspiring youths barely in their teens present a scary scenario.

What is the importance of Family?
 They provide emotional, moral and mental support during challenging times.
 It plays a crucial role in socializing children, teaching them societal norms, values, and behaviours.
 Family provides a sense of belonging and helps individuals develop their identity by instilling cultural, religious, and familial values.
 India swear by Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam. Kutumb or family has traditionally acquired primacy in human interpersonalsocial relationship dynamics.
 The presence of multiple generations in a family fosters intergenerational relationships, creating opportunities for shared wisdom, experiences, and mutual learning.

What are the challenges faced by Traditional Family system?
 Conflicts arise when women desire to work or pursue a career away from Home but at the same time are expected to prioritize domestic responsibilities as well.
 Generational Gap when younger kids have different outlook and approach towards their life, value and belief systems compared to other members.
 In pursuing their goals and careers individuals may move away from their extended families, leading to a decrease in close-knit family support networks.
 Due to increasing usage of technology, candid and heart-to-heart dialogues between husband-wife and parent-children are becoming rare. They have become too formal and superficial. This challenges the collectivist nature of traditional family systems.
 From birthdays to weddings and house-warmings to condolence meetings, everything is being made into a formal event. This creates the “crisis of authenticity” of our interpersonal feelings.
 Cultural and social changes, such as globalization and exposure to diverse perspectives, can challenge traditional family norms and values.

How can we revive India’s traditional family system?
 Improve communication and dialogue that goes beyond formal talks and embraces deeper emotional connections.
 Encourage the preservation of traditional values, customs, and cultural practices within the family, ensuring that they are passed down to younger generations.
 Motivate family members to pursue personal goals while maintaining a sense of togetherness and commitment for family cause.
 Making wise use of technology. For example, encouraging virtual gatherings and staying connected despite the distance barriers.
 Advocating gender equality within family, gender sensitization especially among young boys.
 We need to have women-led families as a starting point for the implementation of PM Modi’s clarion call for women-led development. And to make this happen, men will have to rise above the traditional male mindset.

Way Forward:
 Reforming our families is easier said than done. Woman-led, child-focused and elderly-sensitive families are the need of the hour.
Source – The Indian Express 

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