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Family Stress

Family stress is inevitable. The idea that a family should be free from it, and that an ideal family is almost always devoid of it, is a myth that should be known by every head of the family as soon as possible. How the family is oriented is a significant factor in how they can deal with it, both as a family and as an individual, and with the consequences that come after having dealt with the source. Family Stress: It’s Effects on My Family and the Consequences

Family stress is generally defined as an imbalance, which can be real or imagined, between the demands of the family and the ability of that family to meet those certain demands (“From Family Stress to Family Strengths”, para. 4). Essentially, when there are a lot of things happening which affects the family and the family, as a whole, are not able (or barely able) to handle those situations, stress can occur.

Generally, how the family is affected by the stress is largely dependent on how strong the family structure is in the first place: whether there is an open communication between family members, sufficient time for family bonding, and a general good sense of atmosphere in the perceived house and home. In my case, my family is generally well-adjusted with each other so, as a result, we tend to remain cohesive and stick with each other all throughout the whole ordeal.

Instead of being fragmented, dealing with the problem each in of our ways, we find the time to discuss the whole problem as a unit, discuss how it affects us individually (instead of dealing with them on our own), and discuss solutions to the problem. The stress is there, definitely, especially in cases where it severely affects all of us (e. g. , mortgage issues compunded by college tuition), but it is more or less controlled by how much we’ve come to trust each other fully.

In cases where the stress is more or less due to one family member or person (such as in the case of a “black sheep” in the family), it is dealt with primarily by the father and mother first, before it is dealt with by the other members. So, in essence, a problem is immediately identified before it gets the chance to affect the relationship between each of the family members. The main behavioral consequence with how we deal with the stress—that is, as a family unit, cohesive—is that each family member, as an individual, becomes more well-rounded and well-adjusted.

They each learn the value of trust, first to the other family members, and second to the other members of the society. They also learn to have better self-esteem, as in most cases, when dealing with a source of stress for the family, each family member’s opinion is asked and considered. This gives them a sense of self-worth and an increased value of self, as well as the importance of valuing others’ opinions. Behaviorally, they become a much more active and positive contributors to the society.

They also tend to have a better and more positive outlook in life, since they have learned to rely on the help of others to solve their problems rather than tackle them on their own, relieving potentially added stress in the process. Family stress will always be there. It is how families deal with it that matters. Whether they opt to deal with it per individual os whether they weather the problem as a whole matters much in how it will affect the behaviors of the individual members as they grow up.

Whatever the case, the old adage still holds true: that there is strength in numbers, and that no problem is too big if one group works together to achieve one, definite solution.

References From Family Stress to Family Strength. (2002). NASD: From Family Stress to Family Strength. Retrieved January 7, 2007, from http://www. cdc. gov/nasd/docs/d001201- d001300/d001249/d001249. html

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