The term "family" is defined in various ways as it involves multiple distinct emotions and meanings. According to most definitions, the family is anything involving love. Defining family is difficult to some extent as putting the feelings that one feels about what family is individually into words is tough (Mayntz, 2019). To most people, family involves a father, mother and their children living altogether under one house. One good start point of defining family can be based on Webster's dictionary definition; family is a "group consisting of parents and children living together in a household," even though there exist other various modern definitions of what family is (Open Textbooks, n.d). In general, the family can be defined based on personal understanding of the term: do these definitions means something to you relative to what family is according to you? What specifically comes to your mind as an individual when you contemplate about the meaning of family? Whether its father and mother together, a single parent with kids, pets as a family or probably the friends or unrelated individuals (fictive kin) who assists in filling the unfulfilled responsibilities of your biological family, the family is a powerful term.
One's type of family can change over time as life situations changes, as well as essentiality of family rituals and values, deepens. According to me, every person who assist in making my values and rituals more productive while helping in any transitioning activities happening around, that is an actual member of a family. In my family I am an only child, I have both parents; my dad has two siblings, my mom has three siblings; my grandpa (my mom's side) died when I was 6th grade because of cancer, and my grandpa (dad side) passed away when my dad was young. Using my definition mentioned above, the diagram below represents a genogram (family tree) of my family of three generations.
Fig1: A graphical representation of my family.
Families functionalist perspectives sees family as a group that carry out crucial societal roles both externally and internally. Families acts as a provision of emotional, physical and social well-being to each other. In general despite of longevity, immigrations and spaced out occupation issues, my family has managed to remain together- my mom is professor at electronic college in japan, my dad is engineer, when they were twenty years old, they moved to Tokyo from niigata for the jobs, my mon and dad graduated same high school but went to the different college. In most families' genogram, families are made up through marriages. The institution between family and marriage is an interesting topic among most sociologists as they are the primary structures of society. Societal sanctioned, both family and marriage develop status role even though, not only marriage can create a family in the modern era. The main issue that family face is remarriage issues, immigrations, longevity and divorces (Mayntz, 2019).
Mayntz, M. (2019). Definition of Family. Retrieved from; https://family.lovetoknow.com/definition-family
Open Textbooks. (n.d). Introduction to Sociology- Marriage, and Family (Chapter 14). Retrieved from; https://opentextbc.ca/introductiontosociology/chapter/chapter14-marriage-and-family/.
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