Over a cup of coffee, Jordan said, “I’m often amazed by the ways child-bound (i.e., people who have or want children) react when they come into contact with child-free people” (i.e., people who do not have or want children).Sipping my coffee, I nodded and asked, “What happened this time?” Laughing, Jordan said, “Oh, you know, the usual – some old dude told me ‘well you never know one day you might change your mind.” Giggling, I said, “That’s my favorite, I love turning to them and saying ‘you might want to keep a weapon handy since some day you might change your mind and want to get rid of junior quickly.” Laughing and spilling coffee, Jordan added, “No, my favorite is the old ‘why do you hate children’ and then I get to point out to them that I’m not the one seeking to control children like prisoners through bedtimes, punishments, and other arbitrary rules.” Arriving at the table with a latte, Addison asked, “What’s so funny you two,” and I replied, “Jordan ran into another child-bound zealot” (i.e., child-bound people who feel everyone should want or have children).
Is what we consider the traditional family changing over time? These are the questions sociologists ask when discussing families.
You may think this is a fairly straightforward question with a simple answer.
But think about it for a minute then ask yourself, "Who and what do I include in my family? What if you were raised by your grandparents and your parents played little to no role in your life or if you grew up in an orphanage or the foster care system? Is family limited to genetically related individuals; those we typically think of as kin, and if so, does this mean some people have never met their own family if they have one at all?
" You might say your parents, your siblings, and/or your spouse. Also, if families are limited to genetically related individuals, what do we make of adopted, fostered, or artificially developed people - do they have a family, multiple families, or some combination there in?
Questioning the basic concept of family is a relatively new phenomenon, though variations in what we consider a "family" are not.
There are so many variations of "family" today that it is hard to define what, exactly, a family is.Generally, we think of a family as a domestic group of people, or a number of domestic groups linked through descent from: (1) a common ancestor, (2) marriage, (3) adoption, or (4) some other committed (romantic or otherwise) relationship.” As Jordan and I nodded, Addison frowned and said, “You know, zealots sometimes make me wish I’d never had kids just so I wouldn’t have to associate with them.I love my babies, but I never knew being child-bound turned so many people into assholes.” Smiling, Jordan said, “I’m actually glad you had kids because you give me hope that people can be both child-bound and decent to others at the same time.” Nodding, I added, “Jordan’s right, sometimes thinking of child-bound folks like you is the only way not to kill the zealots on the spot.Now, as fun as this is, can we get to planning your baby’s birthday party already – I brought glitter for the whole family!” Most people have a network of others they consider their family. How do family structures vary from culture to culture or subculture to subculture?