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Why is Family Getting it Wrong?
Why is Family Getting it Wrong
By Tony DeLorger © 2011
Is procreation now simply a result of sex or are we still driven by the paradigms of our forefathers, enacting the cycles of living that have proven to be obsolete on some levels?
The breaking down of family is one of our major societal problems, because our social systems are based on this ideal. The integrity of family has been breached by many external influences like longer working hours, the high cost of living and children with far too much money and far less supervision.
The idea that we find a suitable mate, commit to them and have children living happily ever after has proven not to be as feasible as it was. Commitment, regardless of the responsibility of offspring, has all but disappeared as people are unwilling to work on lasting relationships. When something goes wrong, and as in any relationship it will, someone simply leaves. Relationships come and go and children are usually the casualties.
So are we clinging to an outmoded model? Should we recognise it and seek a new social convention about family groups, child-care and a sensible view of sexual relationships? In many tribal societies, children are cared for by the entire tribe, the parents not the only caregivers. When the parents are away hunting, gathering or whatever, the children are always supervised; they have multiple role models and grow up with the same sense of community responsibility.
Sexually we are driven by hormones designed to help us find a suitable mate with characteristics that compliment our own to enable successful offspring. Beyond that we are sexually active for a great part of our lives and it is not in our nature to be monogamous. That is why so many partnerships break up because of this fact. We cannot stop cheating, we are driven to it.
The ideal of family and marriage is attributed to religious belief, and considering many religions are being deserted for a more realistic lifestyle, these conventions are becoming less important and being questioned like never before. Religion will of course say that world problems are the result of this deterioration of family. It would be more accurate to say the idea itself is breaking down because of changes to life and how our present-day societies have evolved.
So what is the answer? Do we question the parameters of our morality and change the expectations of our sexual activity? Do we simply have one partner or many, and what of our children? If all these aspects of our lives need to change then the change needs to be great and encompass all that family has achieved in the past. In many ways the tribal structure about children is a positive one and worth considering as an idea.
Without a workable structure, children’s needs cannot be met, and as I said that is now a societal problem. In a real sense, I think that trying to get back to the original family scenario is all but impossible; there are too many external pressures and circumstances that will not change.
It’s interesting the longer we’re around and the more technology develops, the less our societies work. Perhaps our forefathers had it right to begin with, and what we’ve changed to better our lives has not included the most basic ideals of relationships and children. We cling to these ideas because of religious belief or a sense of morality that stems from it. Perhaps we have to look at these problems from a fresh perspective.
Love has always been the answer, and no matter how it is expressed it cannot be damaging to any form of society. On the contrary, a new social model that ensures security and a positive upbringing for children, regardless of their parents being married or having multiple sexual partners cannot be bad.
Rather than trying to bandaid the ideas that are failing us, perhaps it is appropriate to question the ideas themselves. Worth a thought?