Family

by cwind2 on April 14, 2014 - 10:48pm

A family of four: the parents happily married, the two children- a son and a daughter- get along so well; maybe even throw a dog in there as the family pet. This is the ideal family, especially in today’s society. However, even a family structured as the above is far from perfect. Family dynamics vary far and wide and however they may seem on the outside, no family is ideal. Not to mention, what could possibly be ideal when half siblings are thrown into the mix. The study takes a look at the interaction between mother and child as well as sibling to sibling in various dynamics as well as changing dynamics. The data was compiled of 236 early adolescent children cases of disruption of parents and entry of new siblings of different paternal descent. Addition of siblings and half siblings increase the conflict within the relationships, with a higher increase coming from the addition of half siblings, however. This all fits the parent- offspring conflict theory of which the study was based, basically explained above.

No family is perfect; this applies especially to my own. I come from a family of five kids with the two oldest being half siblings from my mother’s prior marriage. The oldest has Down’s Syndrome so this study doesn’t quite pertain to her. However, my brother, the next oldest and other half sibling, supports the theory entirely too well. Being seven years my senior, I was able to see him in the prime of his rebellious teenage stage. Without going into detail and revealing personal family affairs, you will just have to take my word that he fit in too well to the model of mother- and sibling- relations. Coming from my own point of view that is.

 

Reference:

Schlomer, G. L., Ellis, B. J., & Garber, J. (2010). Mother–Child Conflict and Sibling Relatedness: A Test of Hypotheses From Parent–Offspring Conflict Theory. Journal Of Research On Adolescence (Wiley-Blackwell), 20(2), 287-306. doi:10.1111/j.1532-7795.2010.00641.x

 

Comments

The title family really drew me in, because family is my number one and always has been. As I started to read, I continued to feel a type of connection to the article because I have two siblings, and my older brother is half. However, what do you mean when you ask how can a family be ideal when there are half siblings? I know you stated that you had half siblings, and that life with them was different and they fit into the mold of the article you researched. However, I think that you should have explained what the theory you researched had said because I feel as if it is slightly ambiguous, and I’m confused as to what the data of the article is. I’m quite interested in hearing more about it. I have a half-brother who is five years older than me, though I grew up with him being my brother. There was never any differentiation between the two for me. He lived with me, picked on me, rooted me on, and, therefore, was my brother. It would be interesting to know what this theory said was so different about half siblings and whole siblings because from my personal experience I honestly cannot differentiate the two. Yes, my brother has a different biological father than I do, but to me that makes him no less my brother. We still fight and yell and get upset with each other, but at the end of the day, he’s my big brother, not my big half-brother. This is an extremely good topic to choose, overall. Family dynamics change with each individual family, so it really interests me to see how other families handle half siblings. Great topic!

Your summary is concise and thought provoking. I found it really interesting that you brought up the complexity regarding the appearance of the ideal family and how, in fact, no family is perfect. Your study attributes the increase in family relationship conflicts with the addition of siblings and half siblings; moreover, I am currently studying the issue of elderly abuse, which is part of the larger sphere of family violence, and like family appearances can camouflage the conflicting relationships within it, I thought that mentioning elderly abuse might provide you with additional insight on the complexity regarding the appearance of having an ideal family. In order to raise awareness, better my community, and help the elderly who are currently being neglected, I am going to volunteer at my local church in order to help the elderly with tasks that they are currently physically unable to do, such as gardening and yard work.

Your summary is concise and thought provoking. I found it really interesting that you brought up the complexity regarding the appearance of the ideal family and how, in fact, no family is perfect. Your study attributes the increase in family relationship conflicts with the addition of siblings and half siblings; moreover, I am currently studying the issue of elderly abuse, which is part of the larger sphere of family violence, and like family appearances can camouflage the conflicting relationships within it, I thought that mentioning elderly abuse might provide you with additional insight on the complexity regarding the appearance of having an ideal family. In order to raise awareness, better my community, and help the elderly who are currently being neglected, I am going to volunteer at my local church in order to help the elderly with tasks that they are currently physically unable to do, such as gardening and yard work.

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