The Complexities of the Family Unit
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This paper reviews the changing nature of the American family. Specifically, the paper looks at the complexities of cohabitation, divorce and step-families with an eye towards outlining what precipitates the first two and what dangers accompany the latter. In the final analysis, it is fairly evident that the American family now encompasses a wider range of arrangements than ever before - and this presents both opportunities for people who might not be happy in a traditional family structure, as well as dangers that were far less common when the nuclear family was the predominant social unit.
From the Paper:"Examining the available evidence collected by Eshleman, it seems clear that different cultures have different ideals vis-a-vis non-traditional relationships among adults. To wit, Puerto Ricans tend to be much more accepting of non-marital cohabitations while Mexican Americans cleave faithfully to the marriage ideal (Eshleman, 2000, p.288). Suffice it to say, if a society is not receptive to non-marital cohabitation, this can place great pressures upon the couple - and can create an uncomfortable situation for any children they may have. Be that as it may, Eshleman (2000) points out on page 151 of his text that non-marital cohabitation is becoming increasingly accepted in the western world and may emerge as a permanent, legitimate alternative to traditional marriage. Certainly, cohabitation seems to offer practical financial benefits, sexual benefits, and a measure of privacy that few other arrangements can match. Additionally, cohabitating couples are much more likely to keep their finances separate (this can be considered a practical financial benefit), are more likely to express low levels of commitment to the relationship, and tend to break up more readily (Eshleman, 2000, p.152 and 155). Clearly, if children are involved, there is a distinct possibility they will find themselves in a one-parent home at some point simply because the parental imperative to stay together is not nearly so strong."
Sample of Sources Used:
- Eshleman, Ross J. (2000). The Family, 9th Edition. Boston: Allyn & Bacon.
Cite this Term Paper:
The Complexities of the Family Unit (2008, June 01) Retrieved July 11, 2020, from https://www.academon.com/term-paper/the-complexities-of-the-family-unit-104055/
"The Complexities of the Family Unit" 01 June 2008. Web. 11 July. 2020. <https://www.academon.com/term-paper/the-complexities-of-the-family-unit-104055/>