A mum and a wife and sometimes just me

Sunday, 9 October 2011

How do you do family?

So as I start back work hubby makes the comment "So now we are the typical family, you know mum and dad work and the child goes to school", then he thought about it and said "Well not that we would not be typical if you weren't working but you know what I mean". Is there a typical family? How do you do family? Am I brave enough to consider such a topic that is open to heated political debate? I actually have an essay about this somewhere and was tempted to get it out and reread it...BUT...somehow I resisted. Thankfully I will not get graded on this blog post. 

We all know the mum and dad and 2.5 kids scenario does exist...defined as the nuclear family if we want to be technical...but it is certainly not THE definition of family any more. I mean you have single parent families, extended families, step families, fostered and adopted families (add others here as you think of them). Yet it's not just the structure that's changed but it's the assumptions of how we should "do" family as well. Decisions like who works and who stays at home? Parents managing with health problems, alcohol or drink problems, parents with disabilities or taking care of a child with disabilities. So many parents are out there fighting for the support they need to make their families work that it's constantly changing. Never mind personal values, ethics and beliefs and your own history based on the way you were raised.

We are a small family, mum, dad and son. Our extended family of grandparents and aunties live far away, so though a supportive network, we tend to rely on each other as a couple to get our family to work. We e-mail and we skype and to stay connected with our family. I have many homes and we hope to be able to travel as much as possible to visit them. We hope to be a bilingual family. I could not afford to stay at home really if we want to buy that dream house and give our son everything he needs (or should I say what we think he needs). He had to go to nursery cause there is no one else for babysitting duties. That's the simple version of how we do family. Ever thought about how you do family?

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