Family relationships are of two kinds, the first being nuclear family relationships and the second being extended family relationships.
Nuclear family relationships are generally among people either currently living under one roof as a nuclear family or having lived under one roof as a nuclear family sometime in the past.
Extended family relationships are among the members of extended families generally not living or ever having lived under one roof.
Extended family relationships mean a lot to some whereas they don’t mean much to others. What are the social parameters that decide how important or unimportant these relations are for those who care for them as well as for those who don’t?
Nuclear family relationships are almost always much stronger than extended family relationships simply because living or having lived under one roof offers a lot of opportunity as well as makes it a necessity to interact with one another at a much wider and a much deeper level than one’s interaction with extended family relationships.
Equations of Interaction – Protocols:
What are the equations that work while interacting with these two kinds of relationships?
It depends. It depends on the kinds of structures these family units are built upon since different kinds of structures expect different kinds of protocols to be followed by its members as they interact with one another.
Protocols define the equations of interaction.
Here comes in the culture, and as we all know culture changes with the changes in the economic scenario brought around by the capitalistic systems of development in any given society.
Impact of Capitalistic Development:
The more developed goes the society, the weaker go the bonds of family relationships, less of nuclear and more of extended so. It happens so because people more often leave the geographical areas of their traditional family centers in order to join jobs in the giant capitalistic ventures located at far off places. There life make them so busy that they hardly find time to meet and interact with their extended family relationships although most of them take care to meet and interact with their nuclear family relationships once in a while.
Out of sight, out of mind!
Also… less in sight, less in mind! 🙂
But wherever people get relocated, they do build up their new nuclear family relationships by marrying and reproducing. And the model of protocols they tend to follow in those is the one they had learned in their early childhood although they adopt some new protocols of the new culture they have become a part of through relocation.
New Relationship New Protocols:
These new protocols are often much liberal and more democratic than the old feudal ones they had learned in their childhood at their native places.
The more feudal are the protocols, the stronger are the bonds of family relationships although it also gives birth to more relationship problems on the other hand. Democracy always values individuals more than the social structures they are a part of.
On the other hand on a positive note… the less stringent go the protocols, the more democratic go the family relationships based on the modern values of equality and freedom. The protocols go diluted diluting the strong bonds of relationships along.
Still it never acquires an ideal state. Family relationships are always a mirror of male to female and adults to children relationships in the society overall.
Remnants of Feudal Structures:
Unluckily the said relationships at the widest social levels in the most advanced societies are still feudal in nature, a fact which makes itself evident when we compare the ratios of the numbers of female state heads and business heads as compared to their male counterparts. A female heading a state or a business is still taken to be an exception and not a normal rule.
Similarly the kind of education we are imparting to our kids in the most advanced societies in their best schools and colleges is not a real creative education that would have developed their talents to the utmost unconditionally, it’s rather still a very regimented syllabus based mechanical education that at best turns them into a very efficient cog in the wheel.
Family Relationships Mirror Societal Relationships:
If our actions are not really democratic in our wider relationships in society guaranteeing equality and freedom, family relationships will follow suit and remain as feudal as the society in general is. That’s why wife-beating and domestic violence are still the teething problems in as advanced a country as the US which as a reaction also sees the teenage violence in schools having gone to an uncontrollable level by now.
Family relationships are still carrying the burden of the past feudal structures on their shoulders even in the most advanced societies as on date!
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