Looking back on past experience and analyzing, it could be an important ability of a person to deliver better support, enhance communication and solve the conflict among the family members. A family is the group of people who live together or is related by the blood, marriage, law, or custom, or members of one’s intimate social group. Coming from the certain cultural and religious background I use to think that marriage happens in the same culture, religious, socio-economic class, race, and occurs between male and female. However, as part of growing up my whole perception towards marriage changed. This piece of writing will reflect on the concept of family in contemporary society, the family strength such as acceptance, support, resilience and spiritual wellbeing and its application to healthcare practice.
Initially, when I was a child I used to think that a family consists of a father, mother, children and sometimes grandparents. However the scenario is different now, I think that the family structure has changed globally in the last couple of decades as the effect of Globalisation, changes in the legislation, political changes, even the influence of media and so on. Srivastava and khan (2016) suggested that globalization has changed the perception of people regarding the marriage and kinship. Nowadays, People accept multicultural marriage regardless of their race, ethnic group, and religion. For instance, when I was small people in my country only used to accept the same caste marriage but as the public opinion has shifted, they now approve the inter-caste marriage. Nowadays, we all are aware that as part of legislative changes same-sex marriage is no longer considered as illegal in many countries whereas Kail, Acosta, and Wright (2015) mention that previous government had denied the amendment to legalize the same-sex cohabitation. I think that the dynamic nature of the constitutional environment and attitude of people on homosexuality have become more flexible which facilitates the approval of the same-sex marriage. In addition, we can find many stories of people being homeless and parentless due to war, being a refugee initially resulted from the political instability or uncertainty. Paulsen (2016) mentions that children who have gone through a war phase they later have developed the symptoms of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PSTD) and were left homeless or at least have lost their one parent.
As every individual is unique, in my opinion, each family is also unique with different strengths and weakness, with their own rituals and norms. Barnes and Rowe (2013) have suggested several family strengths namely togetherness, sharing activities, affection, support, communication, acceptance, commitment, resilience and spiritual well being. Every family has their own way of communicating and supporting each other. Whenever I am in trouble I communicate with my husband and we pray together as we have a family ritual of chanting a prayer to Lord Ganesha (Hindu god) whose primary function is to remove the obstacle. I also have the small statue of Ganesha gifted by my mom. This kind of thing gives me the strength to fight with horrific situations and provides me with the sense of spiritual wellbeing. In a research conducted in a medical staff of Iran, it suggested that spousal support is essentially the most important support that enhances the marital satisfaction (Rostami, Ghazinour, & Richter, 2013). It’s well known that when people feel better connected, that they feel better physically, they are certainly less likely to feel depressed or if they do, they’re in a better position to get out of being depressed. People who face early life stress, child family adversities and depressive symptoms could be reduced far or less through the continuous support from the family (van Harmelen et al, 2016). For me the significant experience happened immediately after marriage there was sudden role change, many people had many expectations from me. That’s when I started experiencing depressive symptoms, feeling of nervousness, started having anxiety attacks and also wanted to harm myself but my husband found out the symptoms and behavioral change in me and helped me to get out of that. He supported me in every way possible and accepted me the way I am without burdening our relationship with expectations. Resilience is also the strength of our relationship because when I was in that phase I used to react very weird and troubled him a lot. Our commitment and affection towards each other didn’t let us give up and that’s when we bounced back. Children may lose their religious faith following a divorce of their parents (Anderson, 2014). This study also mentions that the children living with a single parent are more likely to attempt suicide and develop the psychiatric illness. Hence, maintaining the healthy marital relationship helps children maintain better physical, emotional and academic wellbeing.
Family plays a crucial role in effective progress in patient condition. In my experience, as being a nurse I have seen that in hospital, patients’ strength is their family. Family support helps to provide psychological and emotional support to the hospitalized patients. Boyle (2015) explains the tragic incidence which he himself had experienced when he met a car accident and explained how his family supported him to recover fast. He further explained that the family helps to identify small physical, behavioral changes, body language and personal traits. In my nursing student life (in my country) I have seen patients become highly motivated, and feel satisfied towards the care provided when the family is around. Satisfaction level of a patient is relatively high and they tend to recover fast when one of the family members is with them (Khosravan et al, 2014). Thus, nurses should maintain the good therapeutic relationship with the patient and their family as the active involvement of the family members in patient care enhances the care provided by the health workers. It also helps in early recovery of the patient and provides spiritual well-being.
Evaluating the family in current society, it has drastically changed. Living in the modern society has given each and every member to live equally without violation of their fundamental rights. For example, now same-sex couples have no inhibition, they no longer need to hide and can walk with their heads held high. After analyzing the changes in the family concept, I think it is ensuring that every individual is not treated differently or less favorably on the basis of their gender, sexual orientation, religion or race. We always have the stereotyped everyone for certain reasons but as people have become more liberal, everything is accepted. There is many, family strength that we could apply as a nurse to deliver effective care to the patient.
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