Are We Witnessing the End of the Traditional Nuclear Family?
For many years now, society has expected people to generally become part of a traditional family unit composed of a man, a woman, and their dependent children. However, we are thankfully starting to see changes in societal expectations and norms, and the stigma surrounding other family units has started to be broken down. So, to raise awareness, here are a few different societal units that exist and that you may become a part of or that others you know might engage with!
The number of people who are deciding that they don’t want to have children is on the rise. There are various reasons for this. Economic factors mean that increasing numbers of us can’t afford to raise children. Some of us don’t meet anyone we want to have children with. Many people simply don’t want to have children, and this is fine too!
Divorce is on the rise and it is estimated that as many as 50% of marriages now end in divorce. There is a whole lot less social stigma regarding couples who split up and manage childcare responsibilities between two separate homes. If you are having troubles in your relationship, you may want to go to marriage counseling retreats before making a final decision regarding whether to stay together or not. This will help you to figure out whether you are simply going through a rough patch or whether you would be better off separating.
Sometimes one parent will take on the responsibility of caring for their child or children alone. This could be by choice, or they may not have any other option. Single parents are likely to have to put more work into raising children, as they cannot share responsibilities as easily. However, they can do just as good a job as two parents could!
While same sex parents may not be able to conceive children of their own between them, they can still have a family unit through various means. The first option is adoption. There are hundreds of thousands of children out there looking for a loving home, and increasing numbers of homosexual couples are deciding to adopt. Alternatively, same sex couples can engage with egg donation, sperm donation, and surrogacy.
Co-parenting is increasing in popularity, especially amongst the LGBT community. Co-parenting is a process in which two individuals who have no romantic or sexual history, and who do not cohabitate, share the responsibility of raising a child (or children) together.
There are, of course, plenty more alternative familial arrangements that go against the grain and societal norms of the nuclear family. Each can be just as effective as any other. The important thing to remember is that a good parent is anyone who is dedicated to raising a happy and healthy child!