The modern family looks slightly different now than it did fifty years ago. As gender dynamics evolve, family units shift and laws change, it can feel like traditional family values are going away. They aren’t, they’re just changing, as everything does in time. New family values are built with the same building blocks as old family values, and they’re just as strong.
Family is all about connection. Connections of blood relatives and in-laws, between parents and children, between spouses and across multiple generations. Connections are complex and nuanced, and family can sometimes be chosen. Whether you find your family through blood or through a nationwide adoption agency, it’s the connection that truly matters.
Communication is what holds a family together. When a family falls apart, it’s usually because people aren’t communicating well. Clear and open communication is key for healthy relationships of all kinds. This isn’t to say that communication is always easy: it’s often much harder than people imagine, but it’s also incredibly important. Communication is the glue that keeps a family together, no matter what changes they undergo.
Change is, as they say, the only constant in life. Whether it’s a change of situation or a change of name, accepting change is part of keeping a family happy and strong. Children change into adults, and adults change careers or relationships or towns. If accepting change, or at least accommodating change, isn’t part of your family’s values, you’re going to find yourself struggling as time goes on. If you want to succeed in the future, you need to be open to making and accepting changes right now.
As our opinions about family values change, we must not lose sight of what really matters: the family we build, the love we share, and the bright future we want for the next generation.