Modern Family Nowadays, it seems that the traditional family structure is disappearing and the modern family is replacing it. The family used to be formed by the grandparents, the parents, their brothers and sisters and their kids, living together in the same house, but now the nuclear family formed by the father, the mother and their children, live in a single house without the rest of the family (“Nuclear Family”). I believe that some of the advantages of living in a modern family are: educational freedom, independence of each family member and the free choice in selecting marriage partners.
In a modern family, both men and women could have more freedom to choose their educational career. For example, after graduating from high school, they can decide to continue their education or not. Some can choose to go to a University in the United States and live on campus, while others can choose to study abroad. Whichever decision they make, the parents would be supportive. On the contrary, in the past, parents could stop their sons from going to school and would force them to work, for example, in the reading “Traditional vs. Modern Family,” Wan L.
Lam explains how her grandfather stopped her father from going to high school and forced him to work in ivory sculpture (168). In the past, parents could also make their children to go into a career, without caring if they liked it or not, and they could even stop them from studying abroad. Another advantage of living in a modern family is that each member is very independent, able to work and provide for themselves. Both parents share the expenses, provide for the family, and also shares responsibilities, such as doing chores at home and taking care of the children.
The older children also can work and help parents with their own expenses. In the past, children were very dependent on their parents and were always at home with the mother taking care of them, while the father was at work and was the only financial provider. On the contrary, nowadays, as Papa Aly Naw states in the essay “Traditional Family and Modern Society in Africa,” both mother and father have to go outside to work and children are “left to themselves and without supervision,” (173) having now more freedom, learning how to behave and control themselves and taking their own decisions.
This writer also says that because of the mother is not home during the day, children “spend much of their time deciding for themselves,” (Ndaw 173), letting them grow up, become more independent and having the opportunity to develop their own interest in life. Another advantage of living in a modern family is that there is more freedom to choose who we would marry. It allows today’s couples to marry by their own will and not because of interest.
This also makes their relationship more caring and warmer, and if they have any children, it would be because of love. On the contrary, in the past, parents would force their kids to marry for interest, especially to someone powerful and rich, regardless if they liked them or not. But now, marriages are different, most of people can choose whoever they want to marry, for example my older sister chose freely her partner and got married because of love, and my parents supported her decision.
Although I prefer living in a modern family than living in a traditional one, sometimes I feel that my family needs to recover some values from the traditional family structure, specially the communication between members. I think that my family does not spend enough time together, and we need to learn how to find time to share experiences, and do it without affecting our busy schedules. However, I still believe that is very important to have a good education, be independent and have the freedom to make our own decisions, we also need to keep more in touch with our family and not forget about some traditional family values.
Work Cited Lam, Wan L. “Traditional vs. Modern Family” In Our Own Words: Student Writers at Work. Ed. Rebecca Mlynarczyk and Steven B. Haber. New York: Cambridge University Press, 2005. 168-169. Ndaw, Papa Aly. “Traditional Family and Modern Society in Africa” In Our Own Words: Student Writers at Work. Ed. Rebecca Mlynarczyk and Steven B. Haber. New York: Cambridge University Press, 2005. 171-173. “Nuclear Family. ” Wikipedia. 2010. 25 April 2010 .