How to become a strong family
Nowadays, family can no longer be defined as simply as it used to be. Father, mother, child – that was once. Family includes everything from one parent with a child to 2 fathers or mothers to the so-called patchwork family. This is formed from one or more remaining families when fathers and mothers fall in love again. But despite all the diversity, there are some basic values and conditions that apply to every family if strong, self-confident children are to emerge from it. First of all, family means sticking together unconditionally, despite any disagreements.
Family is a fundamental togetherness based on shared experiences. A bond that lasts a lifetime. This bond is woven from various strands that make it strong.
Having time for each other
The most important thing is probably to have time for each other and spend time together. A family that only writes notes or emails to each other does not deserve the name.
You need shared experiences and memories. And that doesn’t just mean free time and vacations, but also doing chores together. This, too, creates cohesion, perhaps even more than just relaxed hanging out. For better or for worse – the formula applies even more strongly to the family than to the couple that gets married only to divorce a few years later.
Rules regulate togetherness
As soon as several individuals (and children definitely count among them) live under one roof, friction and conflicts automatically arise, no matter how much people like each other. Fixed rules that apply to everyone help to reduce these points of friction as much as possible. In order to establish these rules, you have:
- to sit down and talk with each other,
- to present your point of view and
- to learn to understand the other person. You set the table, I put the dishwasher away.
Even the smallest babies need rituals; regularities that provide security. Recurring routines that you can look forward to in advance, from the evening bedtime story to the same routine at Christmas. Rituals in everyday life can be quite unspectacular. The joint lunch can be just as much a part of it as the Saturday trip with the father to the drinks market or the visit to the ice cream parlor after the report cards are handed out.
Rules and rituals should provide support, but should not tie you down. That’s why openness and flexibility are just as much a part of a strong family. The ritual of eating dinner together must be strong enough to be broken if, for example, a child’s birthday party lasts a little longer. A strong family does not shut itself off from the environment, but integrates friends and acquaintances, lets them participate in rituals, talks to each other and discusses the day’s events. Because you also develop common ground by standing out from others as a group. All of this contributes to cohesion. And there’s something else: the ability to allow each individual member freedoms as well. The freedom to have a different opinion than the other family members and other interests. The freedom to withdraw from time to time and to develop one’s own personality.
The upbringing in a strong family is characterized by freedom, but also by clear boundaries, by time to listen, by love that also tolerates quarrels. Such an upbringing is very likely to produce self-confident, strong children.