marriage and family are the most cruci...
marriage and family are the most crucial structures in most cultures. Although
the United States highly advocates for marriages, it leads when it comes to
countries with the highest divorce rates. Individual benefits and the required
social values are generated through the family. Moreover, the permanent union
of a man and a woman results to the well-being of humans and the community at
large. However, the family is changing, leading to a situation whereby the
two-parent households are countable in the contemporary society. Re-marriages,
cohabitations and divorce cases are on the rise leading to the shrinkage of the
family as a result of single-parent families and low rates of fertility. The
changes in family have also led to the change in conditions associated with
parenthood and family. People nowadays have children before marriages, leading
to a transformation in the family structures and roles in marriages. The change
in the family structure has led to the increased involvement of mothers in the
labor force, many of them being breadwinners in their families. Due to these
changes, the main family structure no longer prevails in the US. (PARENTING IN
fertility and family survey reports that most of the Americans marry and move in
together at a certain period in their lives compared to other adults in most
developed countries. However, there is still a low rate in the stability of
unions in the US compared to other developed countries. Most of the marriages
in the US last for a very short period of time, approximately about 23% of
marriages end up in divorce within five years. The increase in parental
transition in the US is also another feature that distinguishes the American
marriages from the rest of the marriages. The views by most Americans is that
marriage is important and should be highly valued. However, their
individualistic nature tends to differ with their views on marriage, leading to
a contradiction between marriage aspiration and partnership transitions. (Kata
Fustos June 2010). According to Kata Fustos, the unique marriage and divorce
trends are as a result of the Americans’ endless search for partnerships and
intolerance to unhappiness. (Kata Fustos June 2010).
to Arvonne S. Fraser, the typical American family before changes in the family
structure started taking place consisted of the father who was the sole
breadwinner, a caretaking mother and one or more children. However, this family
structure has changed significantly in the last two decades. Some of the factors
influencing the change in the family structure include the change in workforce.
The change in workforce is characterized by the increment in the involvement of
women in the work paid labor force, leading to an increment in the women
employment rates and a decrease in the men’s rate of employment. The change in
employment rates in favor of the women has led to change in lifestyle and a
flaw to the cultural assumptions which have been in existence for a long period
of time. (Arvonne S. Fraser 1989, 1997). For the society to survive, the
necessity to understand the process of child bearing and upbringing,
significance of intimate relationships and the need for family policies needs
to be made clear so that the families in the society can be successful. The
next generation will have to incur costs during the caretaking period. However,
with the changes in marriage and family, childbearing is also considered
optional for the married.
nuclear and symmetrical families are being replaced by the single-parent
households as a result of the increase in divorce rates or people deciding not
to get married at all. The case of single-parent families would not have been
accepted in the past centuries as it was thought to cause negative social
implications. The cost of getting a divorce has also reduced, leading to the
increasing number of married people that opt to stay divorced. However, some
divorcees decide to remarry, giving rise to a new type of family known as the
reconstituted family. (UKESSAYS 23rd March, 2015). The introduction of tax
credits, child benefit and financial support offers great assistance to parents
as they care for their children. However, this has encouraged the need for most
parents to remain divorced because they can provide the essentials for their
children without financial assistance from a partner. Duties and functions of
the family have also changed due to change in the family structure. The ability
to share duties among the family members continues to reduce due to the
movement to the cities for work purposes. The change in social trends also
brings about changes in the family, resulting to a different and multi-cultural
culture. The changes
in the family structure have led to less socialization due to the rise of
single parenting and in situations where both parents have to go to work and
care less about the family matters and caring for the child. Children are
nowadays taken to children care centers or nurseries and schools instead of
receiving care and guidance from their parents. The rise in divorce cases has
also led to homosexuality and cohabitation because very few of those who are
divorced, think of remarrying. Although there is opposition concerning the
current direction of the family structure, some people have embraced the new
structure, terming it as advanced and evolutionary. The contemporary society
forces people to move to areas where job availability is guaranteed, concurring
with the issue that families are subject to revision and change from time to
time. Divorces resulting from high conflict between married partners are always
an advantage to the children involved. However, divorces caused by low conflict
are likely to cause suffering from the aftermath of the divorce to the children
involved. The children suffer from the feeling of rage, loss and grief. (Molly
S. Castelloe 27th April 2011). Technology has taken over the
parenting responsibility, with most children opting to use social networking
and other forms of online communication to cover up the void caused by non-responsible
parenting. Currently, most of the families are being headed by single mothers,
who is either divorced or not married at all. There is also an increase in the
number of people living alone and people without any relationship staying
together. However, intermarriages among different races is becoming common even
with the increase in the single parent families. (Jens Manuel Krogstad APRIL
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