Family Inquiry Reflection Paper Example

Paper Type:  Essay
Pages:  7
Wordcount:  1910 Words
Date:  2022-08-15


Different issues that people experience in life impact family structures and family life. In this case, families are significant sources of influences on the perspectives that people bring to their thinking and work. This paper is a reflection of issues faced by my family that has contributed to my life or views.

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Issue Faced by my Family

The problem that I want to learn more about regards the reason as to why my family had to relocate from Columbia to America and remain there for the rest of their life. I always thought that the Columbia must be a country, not suitable for the family and that is why my parents had to shift to America. I want to know the main reasons for my parents moving from their motherland to a foreign nation, the challenges faced and how they managed to overcome the issues and decided to remain there. I want to understand how life in the U.S. was or is different from that of Columbia.

The Most Informant Person Regarding the Issues

My mother is a good informant about the challenge that my family faces. She has been there and seeing how things changed from Columbia to America. My mother has experienced all the changes and can give a detailed account of the scenario before and now. Therefore, she is the best person to ask the concerns. There are several questions that I asked to get my mother discussing the issues that I wanted her to uncover. These questions entailed the reason as to why they decided to relocate to the United States, some of the main challenges experienced when you first arrived, when they came, how things changed and got better, whether my parents ever just want to move back to Colombia and what she thinks made her end up staying in America.


The interview with my mother provided me with essential answers that I can discuss the issue of relocation from Columbia to the U.S. and decide to stay there for good. From the answers, I realized that my family comes from Medellin Colombia and they moved to America in 1997 when I was only one year old. I have a nuclear family although earlier we lived in an extended family back in Columbia and the early years of living in America. My mother stated that the main reason for relocating to the U.S. was to search for better work opportunities and earn more money than they could make in Columbia. I learned that my notion of Columbia being a country that is not suitable for the family was all wrong. The only reason for coming to America was because of the many opportunities that the family wanted to explore in better opportunities for work and money.

Family life in Columbia is different from that in the U.S. In Columbia, many of the families are extended, and one person has a huge responsibility of taking care of many family members. This aspect is what my parents and the other family members carried to America. However, my mother was uncomfortable and always wanted privacy with her nuclear family. The main challenges that my parents faced after arriving in America were language and finding a job for my mother. These issues made her feel like going back to Columbia in the first years of living in America. Things got better for my family after they assimilated with the American life. It required them to learn English, associate with Americans and learn their culture. In that case, the family is now bilingual. My mother has a stable job after learning the English language which is useful for effective communication within the U.S. My father did not face many challenges as construction work did not require much of language qualifications. The family is now economically stable with both parents working and comfortable with the American culture.

Theories and Framework of Issues Facing the Family


Psychosocial Developmental Theory: The Erickson's psychosocial developmental theory is useful in helping to understand how my family has navigated through the challenges and life stressors in America. The psychosocial developmental approach has eight stages of development. The seventh stage of generativity vs. stagnation is associated with adult growth and change in life (Cherry, 2018). In adulthood, people face various conflicts during social interactions, and this impacts one's functioning and further growth. Success in managing the life challenges helps an individual transition to the next stage and gain a lifelong psychological virtue. My family migration to America and their life experiences there fit well within the generativity vs. stagnation stage of development in the Erikson's psychological, developmental theory. During this phase of growth and development, an adult continues to build their lives by focusing career and family.

When considering my family issue, at the time of their migration from Columbia to America and facing the challenges in the foreign land, my parents were in the generativity vs. stagnation stage of development. They were building their lives by focusing on career and family. They came to America to seek more work opportunities, money and a better lifestyle for the family which could not have been achieved back in Columbia. I can say that by going through the life challenges in America, my parents have passed the generativity vs. stagnation stage of development successfully. They can now contribute to the world by being active in their home and society. The time that my mother felt hopeless because of unemployment was a stagnation that held her development to get involved and contribute to the family and the community at large. My mother felt unproductive and uninvolved in the world, and that affected her emotional and social well-being. The family is now economically stable and doing well in life. It shows that the generativity aspect of development in adulthood has been achieved and my parents are now proud of their achievements, watch their children growing to adulthood and creating a sense of unity together as a couple. These are accomplishments that come with fulfillment for my parents at this stage of development.

Social Learning Theory: In Bandura's social learning theory, a person learns through observation and modeling. Looking at what others are doing has an impact on the behavior of a person. An individual develops new skills through the acquisition of information (Cherry, 2018). By listening to verbal instructions and observing characters display their behaviors, people can learn a lot. Bandura's social learning theory helps me realize the process of development for my parents to learn the English language and American culture to achieve complete assimilation in a foreign nation. It is through learning the new language skills and culture of American people that helped my parents stay in the U.S., get comfortable with life and opted to remain there. The social learning theory helps me to make sense of the ideas of my mother of interacting with the Americans. The socialization process impacts on self-development as the society influences the formation of the self through the individual learning process (Crossman, 2018).

Sociocultural Theory: In this theory, Vygotsky stated that people learn through social interaction with others. An individual learns by integrating with other people in understanding the world. This theory helps me realize the importance of my parents starting to celebrate American holidays such as Thanksgiving every year. The new trend enabled them associating and integrating with Americans and thus learning the English language fast and find jobs that they enjoyed. It shows that learning is an active social process through hands-on experience. Culture is an aspect responsible for growing higher-order functions in a person's life.

A framework of Issues Facing the Family

Language deficiency, unemployment, gender, and immigration are aspects that affect my family and especially the first years of shifting to America. These issues help me in understanding and making sense of the familial challenges my parents family faced after migrating to America. Due to language barriers, immigrants in a nation have a high risk of unemployment, and this affects their social well-being (Jamil, Kanno, Abo-Shasha, AlSaga, Fakhouri & Arnetz, 2012). The aspect of language influenced the life of my parents as immigrants to the U.S. as it had a negative impact. My parents were not comfortable going places or ask for assistance when in need of help. Communication became a big problem, and this affected their social well-being. My mother stayed for about six years before getting the desired employment that suited her career as an early childhood teacher. The lack of language skills in English led my mother to work in odd jobs that affected her emotionally. After learning the English language, it was easy for my mother to apply and get a job in the U.S.

Women immigrants face more challenges in the foreign country when compared to men. According to Hiralal (2017), female migrants face many challenges and constraints in many parts of the world. They take more time to adjust to the new environment regarding assimilation and accommodation. Due to language, unemployment, and lack of familial support, women tend to stay behind not looking for help to adjust to the new environment. Gender becomes an essential feature of explaining the complexities surrounding women immigration challenges. These aspects describe the experience my mother went through in the U.S. within the first few years after migration. They help me understand why my mother was uncomfortable with almost everything including doing odd jobs, staying with in-laws and not being able to communicate with Americans. It made her life miserable during that time and wished to go back to Columbia.


In conclusion, the challenge that my family has faced and contributed to the perspective of life is their migration to America. We come from Columbia and migration of my family to the U.S. led to issues that at first were discouraging to my mother to continue staying in America. After discussing with my mother, I have realized that their migration from Columbia was not majorly because my motherland was not suitable for the family. However, my parents wanted to get better opportunities to work and earn more money in the U.S. After migrating to America, life in the first few years was difficult for my mother. However, through assimilation with the American language and culture, it was easy to cope and get a sustaining job. The framework of issues such as immigration, gender, language, and unemployment helps me make sense of the familial challenge in America. Further, sociological and developmental theories also explain the needed development and socialization process for my family to come out of the challenge and have a promising life in America. I now understand that families do not migrate from their countries to the U.S. because the motherland is inhabitable. They migrate to look for new and greener pastures that are available in America.


Cherry, K. (2018, April). Erik Erikson's Stages of Psychosocial Development. Psychosocial Psychology. Retrieved from

Crossman, A. (2018, March). Major sociological theories: A list of sociological theories, concepts, and frameworks. Retrieved from

Hiralal, K. (2017). Women and migration - Challenges and constraints: A South African Perspective. Nordic Journal of African Studies, 26(1); 158-175.

Jamil, H., Kanno, S. S., Abo-Shasha, R., AlSaqa, M. M., Fakhouri, M., & Arnetz, B. B. (2012). Promoters and barriers to work: a comparative study of refugees versus immigrants in the United States. The New Iraqi Journal of Medicine, 8(2), 19-28.

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Family Inquiry Reflection Paper Example. (2022, Aug 15). Retrieved from

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