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Word Count: 1,301
What does the word family mean to people today In order to derive a proper definition one must first acknowledge that there exists a lot of different types of families Nevertheless because family is a major social issue a single idealized image cannot be promoted Over the past thirty years families have gone through many rapid change Trends like dual earner families women in the labour force increases in divorce rates and economic hardship all support the argument that a stable family life is at risk For women there is a new form of enslavement for men there is a new sense of unease and for children there is a future of uncertainty The traditional family consisting of a working husband a homemaker wife and their young children is slowly becoming obsolete Today there is need for a broader and more realistic definition For example A family is a social group that may or may not include adults of both sexes may or may not include one or more children who may or may not have been born in their wedlock eg adopted children or children by one adult partner of a previous union The relationship of the adult may be common-law and they may or may not share a common residence Vanier 2000 p7 Due to vast amount of living arrangements several other definitions of familys exist An extended family consists of grandparents aunts uncles cousins and in-laws while a nuclear family is a smaller group referring to those related and living in the same household Moreover the latter is most common in large cities where certain jobs require flexible work hours The irregularity if these hours may therefore deter certain people to be responsible for a family People rely on family to provide emotional as well as financial support Further a family teaches primary socialization skills to children and prepares them for life In todays fast paced lifestyle time spent with family is
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