Do you think staying with extended family is good?

@scheng1 (24850)
Singapore
February 17, 2011 8:09am CST
There are some cultures that encourage the whole extended family to stay together. That means you are staying with your grandfather, grandmother, uncles, aunts, your father, your mother, cousins, siblings, nephews and nieces in close proximity, even in the same house. Do you think it is good to stay near the extended family? Do you stay with your grandparents and parents? How do you cope with staying with large family or stay alone?
1 person likes this
19 responses
@nzalheart (2352)
• India
20 Feb 11
Hi again!!!! The life of human beings are governed by the circumstances in which they are grown up. This effects the choice of people in what they want, and what make them comfortable. About my family, I live in extended family. I have my grandfather and grandmother, two uncles, one married and one child. My father is the eldest one and we are two brothers. All together we are 10 in a family. People in Nepal are very much attached to the relations. There are lots of festivals in Nepal in a year, so that in each festival, even the relatives staying away from home are invited and is a opportunity to get the update of each other. This is the way the life has been working on in Nepal... It's not that there are no misunderstandings living in the joint family. But still there is love for each other that binds all the members in the family. I know one day we got to separate with uncles one day. Its the way of life here in Nepal... Living in joint family is fun if everyone is cooperative. There are lot of people and more security. The grandparents are more happy with the children. After all the grand childs are the main source of happiness for grand parents. So my uncles, little daughter brings lots of smile in my grandparents.... More to be written later on...Happy mylotting...
@scheng1 (24850)
• Singapore
20 Feb 11
Hi Nzal, long time no see! Nice to have you back. Most people in Asia benefit from extended family. The children are very close to their cousins, and they are very close to the grandparents as well. If Nepal is a smaller or a flatter country, I guess you can walk from one village to the next easily, and visit all the relatives. Just too bad that Nepal is such a mountainous region, and walking takes a few days.
@nzalheart (2352)
• India
20 Feb 11
Hi again!!!! Ya, Nepal is a mountainous country, that's why making of roads has been too much difficult in Nepal. But more than that, political issues are main reason for the lag in development... Fortunately, I don't have any relatives, away from the valley. Most of my relatives are easily accessible by walking few minutes from home. So the problem you mentioned doesn't exist for me. But the situation you described exists for the people in Nepal in other parts... As a child, my grandmother had been the best friend for me. There was a time in my life, when I used to be with my grandmother whole day and assist her in home work.... Nice to be back, but I don't know If I'll continue mylotting..Its good to see you still mylotting with same spirit and enjoyment as before...keep it up...keep mylotting...
@scheng1 (24850)
• Singapore
21 Feb 11
Hi Nzalheart, the development of a country depends largely on the government, not the terrain of a country. Switzerland is also a mountainous country. However, the government encourages and protects private banking, and that is why the country becomes rich. I think Nepal is better in the olden days when the King was still in charge. Now everyone is fighting for power, and everyone is also fighting for money. Even when businessmen want to bribe the officials, they do not really know who is in power at any given time. End up everyone wants to get the money, and nobody has the absolute say in the country.
• Philippines
27 May 11
I actually admire having such cultures where families and extended families stick together, live in a big old house or live in a particular neighborhood. There are so many advantages to such set-ups especially when the members would like to reiterate the values of knowing and respecting your roots and family traditions and valuing the importance of family. I would have loved to grow in such a neighborhood where I would get to know my grandparents more and get to really be so close to them. Unfortunately, I didn't get that chance. My family and I live on a different province from where our close relatives and cousins are. I didn't really get to know my grandparents that much and sometimes, I only relied on what my parents told me about them. On the other side, I enjoy the company of family. My family gives me the feeling of being safe and at peace with whatever might be troubling me. It was a good thing that my brother and I were raised to love the family we grew up with. We were taught how to value each and everyone of us and that's a good thing. As of now, I am living away from my family. I live with a few friends who are also working in the same city I live in now. I miss my family so much.
@scheng1 (24850)
• Singapore
27 May 11
Hi Penrockerchic, actually living near each other does not really mean a very closed knitted family. For example, for us in Singapore, even though the country is very small, we do not get to see our relatives much. I think it has to do with the way we live our lives here. Over here, most of us work long hours or odd shifts during the week or weekend. This plus the fact that families here emphasize on education, and students have to go to school in the weekends or attend enrichment courses on Sunday. That makes it almost impossible for relatives to get together. I think our childhood days were much better. We did not have to do so much homework, and our parents allowed us to play with relatives.
• Philippines
27 May 11
I completely agree with you. Childhood was way better. I remember spending my summer vacation with relatives every time we visit our grandparents. Everything else was so easy back then. But at some areas in our country, families tend to live in a compound or a neighborhood and they still get to have little get-together celebrations usually on weekends or during special occasions like birthday parties. At times, festivities and holidays are much more fun when there' s a lot of you celebrating just outside your compound.
@scheng1 (24850)
• Singapore
27 May 11
Hi Penrockerchic, I have never experienced such big family gathering for festivals or special events. I think the problem here is that many of us remain single, since the cost of living is too high, and housing is too expensive. Another factor is that even families tend to have just one child, instead of three to five children in the neighboring countries. I think we are getting to the stage where the country has more active old people than active young people. The young people seem to spend all their times indoor or wasting their time in the shopping malls. They do not have much time for gatherings, except for online gatherings in games or forums.
@staria (2782)
• Philippines
18 Feb 11
I prefer not to live w/ my extended family. This situation actually has its advantages as well as disadvantages. Advantage for me is that when you need extra help, may it be from as little as change, or as big as help for emergencies you will have someone to call. They will always be present to help you no matter what. But disadvantage is that, somehow you will lean on them. You will not learn to be independent. My husband and I made it a point that we shall live far from our families because we wanted to take control of our life, sometimes families can be really imposing. And they sometimes do not know where to stand between a husband and wife fight.
@scheng1 (24850)
• Singapore
20 Feb 11
Hi Staria, actually staying in an extended family have nothing to do with independence. Many foreign workers come from countries with extended family. However, once they are old enough to work overseas, they work in different parts of the world, and visit their family once in every two years or once in ten years. They rely on their extended family to take care of their children.
@staria (2782)
• Philippines
21 Feb 11
Hi there, sorry, my POV is based on what is usually happening here in our country. Extended families usually rely or cling into their parents, etc. Even if they have their own family, if they do not have a job or do not have to capability to feed their families, they would lean on them. Not only to care for the older/younger ones, but literally stay because they are incapable. So that is why I touched the issue of independence in my comment.
@scheng1 (24850)
• Singapore
21 Feb 11
Hi Staria, so sad to hear that. The whole purpose of staying with an extended family is to take care of aged parents and grandparents, and not the other way round. I think those adults deserve a good spanking. Too bad the government does not enact laws to force them to work.
@beamer88 (4268)
• Philippines
17 Feb 11
My parents stay with us in the same house. They're both past their retirement age. Actually, we're happy to have them stay with us. They help take care of my young son, teaching him a great deal of values, telling him stories of the good old days, even helping him out with his homework. At the same time, I can also watch over my parents. They're getting old and I'm not comfortable with the idea of the two of them staying alone in their house.
@scheng1 (24850)
• Singapore
17 Feb 11
Hi Beamer88, when I was young, I stayed with my grandparents too. Since my parents both worked, my grandparents took care of us. However, my grandparents stopped my parents from disciplining us, and that caused a tension in the family. I think if the grandparents are wise, they will learn to keep their mouths shut when they see their son disciplines the grandchildren. That is better for everyone.
• India
17 Feb 11
for working parents i think its good if there parents stay wih them to take care of there childrens but only if they are wise and kind. I have seen much of the grand parents just shouting on their daugter-in-law which creates stress in home.
@beamer88 (4268)
• Philippines
17 Feb 11
My parents leave the disciplining to us. They sometimes advise us on how to deal with certain situations but they do that when my son isn't around. And they only do that when we asked for their advice. They don't even spoil my son, although they sometimes can't say no to his whims. I really have great parents, and they brought us up well. And that's how I also intend to bring up my son.
• India
17 Feb 11
I live in a neutral family. But when i go and meet relatives then i'll be very much happy and stay some days with them but later i miss my home. I think that living far apart from relatives and meeting once in a while helps to keep love between relationships but if they are together with all of them then tere are much of quarrels than love. So i suggest saying in neutral family is better and meeting them once in a while is good
@scheng1 (24850)
• Singapore
17 Feb 11
Hi Varshathakur, staying together is good for kids, since kids can quarrel and play, and the bond is still strong even if they play until they quarrel every day. But for adults staying in the same house is definitely a disaster. Everyone will quarrel over housework, and money. however, for those households staying near each other, and everyone goes back home later, it is much better.
• India
17 Feb 11
ya i too mean the same .. kids can enjoy a lot in joint family. and my younger sis love to go in functions in relative so that she meets her cousin and play. Whatelse a kid needs if they have someone to play with her whole day.
@scheng1 (24850)
• Singapore
18 Feb 11
Hi Varshathakur, actually parents have more free time if they stay near their relatives. I mean they can just bring the kids to one of the relatives' house, and then go shopping or doctor appointment. They will feel safer to have relatives looking after kids, than to let the kids stay alone at home.
@advokatku (4039)
• Indonesia
17 Feb 11
Psychologically, I think, still live with large families in one house is not something that becomes a problem. By continuing to gather with other family members, certainly would make sense of kinship is stronger
@scheng1 (24850)
• Singapore
17 Feb 11
Hi Advokatku, the traditional family unit is controlled by the family head, with all his sons and their wives, and children staying together. It is not very practical in today context. The best is to stay near each other, so that everyone can help out. I think if the extended family stays together, they will definitely quarrel. The grandfather may like one son more than another, and compare grandkids against each other. That is a recipe for disasters.
• India
17 Feb 11
hey advokatku i also have the same thinking as scheng1 . whole family may be unitedly being together but at some or the other point there will be some reason that fights starts in the family. nowadaysthe world is selfish and everyone stays for their own needs and when they stay together the words "me" "i" should never come in mind but as todays world context this is impossible. There may be approximately 1% of families who stays together and are happy.
@dragon54u (31403)
• United States
17 Feb 11
My extended family was all in one state, most of us within 30 miles of each other, when I was a child. There was always someone to play with, visit with, borrow from, share with, help out or help. I think it's good for families to be close. My sons were raised 1800 miles from any extended family and it shows. They are not close to my family or their father's, not like I was. Thus, they don't really care what the family thinks of them. Caring what my family thought of me saved me from getting into a lot of trouble when I was young! I think families should be together. Maybe not all in the same house but being within 30 miles of each other is great.
@scheng1 (24850)
• Singapore
17 Feb 11
Hi Dragon54u, I stayed with my grandparents and parents under the same roof when I was young. My cousins were just within walking distance, since my aunt's house was just nearby. Even when some of my relatives stayed a bit far away, it was just a few minutes bus ride. I agree that family tie was strong then, it is still very strong now. My parents could work, and not worry about us, since our grandparents could take care of us. I think it is good for relatives to stay near each other. Blood is still thicker than water.
• India
17 Feb 11
ya i too suggest the same .. we can be close to home but not in one homes as they would be problems for each and every small things
@sweet_pea (3326)
• Philippines
21 Apr 11
It is good to a certain extent like you can always have someone look after your kids when you go to work. It usually is fun when you gather for a family celebration. But there are also downsides to it. It can’t be avoided that jealousy and conflict will arise among family members. You can’t decide for your own family. There are family members who would try to meddle to your own personal affairs. Fortunately, my husband and I didn’t have to live with our extended families when we got married. We lived on our own. I remember my brother in law said when asked why they want to live on their own, he said “I want to be the King of my own home”.
@scheng1 (24850)
• Singapore
21 Apr 11
Hi Sweet_pea, your brother is really smart. If he lives with the extended families, both from your side and his wife's side, then there will be great mess. It is harder to discipline kids with doting grandparents around. Much better to live on your own, and then visit the extended families frequently to keep the relationship intact.
@Xplora (2)
• Nigeria
18 Feb 11
really this could be a nice idea in some aspects - say u get to be advised by not only your parents but the entire family as a whole which gives you a wide knowledge of the technical know how of how to do things and in other ways.... there would be jealusy and etc but this really depends on which family though...
@scheng1 (24850)
• Singapore
20 Feb 11
Hi Xplora, if you are talking from the perspective of kids, they do not know about jealousy and other problems. They are happy enough to have so many cousins and friends to play with. The jealousy and other negative feelings are felt by the adults. If the grandparents are wise, they will not create a hostile environment. They will treat everyone equally, and divide the housework evenly.
• Philippines
18 Feb 11
In my own point of view it is good to stay with your extended family because you can easily ask for help when you are in need. However, I believe that it is best that a person would be living away from his relatives so that he will be able to grow as a person. In other words, one will be able to stand in one's feet without the help of one's relatives. Furthermore, familial misunderstandings will be prevented if one will stay away from one's extended family.
@scheng1 (24850)
• Singapore
20 Feb 11
Hi Areshstarfreak, many people who grow up in an extended family are very independent and confident. I think staying in an extended family with so many cousins, and relatives help them grow up into a very confident young person. Many Asian countries still practice extended family staying together, either in the same house or the same town. The young people will go overseas to work, and they get to go home only once in every two years or four years. They know that their extended family can take care of their equally young wives and children.
@webearn99 (1744)
• India
18 Feb 11
Yes, despite the restriction of privacy, adjustments to be made and personal freedom. I am from such a family, but get to do whatever I want to do because I have devised ways to do them. A little bit of deception, you know! The comfort of a back up in case of an emergency is very reassuring.
@scheng1 (24850)
• Singapore
20 Feb 11
Hi Webearn, it is good to have the support of such a big family when you need it. I think many people who do not grow up in an extended family find staying with parents a chore. They definitely cannot get along with grandparents, parents, parents in law, uncles, aunts and other relatives staying in the same household or just within walking distance from each other. It is good that you get the best of both worlds, since you manage to enjoy personal freedom, and the warmth of your family.
@SIMPLYD (76557)
• Philippines
18 Feb 11
It is a always a good feeling to be staying close to where our extended family are. They tend to be our support during our "low" times. However, if we will all be staying in the same house, it will be awkward. Even if the house is so large and comfortable to accommodate all, it's still as if there's no real privacy at all to your own family.
@scheng1 (24850)
• Singapore
20 Feb 11
Hi Simplyd, when I was young, we did not know that there was such a thing known as privacy. Everything was so opened, and everyone poked into the bedroom of each other. I think kids do not have this concept of privacy. However, adults and teenagers definitely value their personal space. Probably the best is to stay near each other, but not in the same house.
@Rostow (59)
17 Feb 11
I'm sort of glad in a way that all my extended family live at least a few hundred miles a away and in many cases on the other side of the world. My reasoning for this is simple. We don't get tangled in the net of family politics which seems to be particularly nasty amongst all of my extended family. Having said that when I was younger I always wished they lived close. i think it would have been much nicer to know them growing up and would made my childhood even more fun. They all celebrate Christmas together in Australia and Scotland and South Africa whilst we have to spend Christmas with friends which is fun but not quite the same as having at least an occasional family Christmas.
@scheng1 (24850)
• Singapore
20 Feb 11
Hi Rostow, I think if you have lived with all the relatives within walking distance of each other, you would enjoy it very much. The family politics usually are not that bad if the families stay near each other, and have similar financial background. However, with relatives in different parts of the world, I guess you have no chance to get involved in nasty family politics. Actually if the older generations have done things right, they would have reduced siblings rivalry, and the younger generations would not suffer.
• Philippines
17 Feb 11
I am living in an extended family but if i have a choice i prefer not to. there's not really a problem with it, but sometimes, its difficult to find some quiet time specially if there are kids.
@scheng1 (24850)
• Singapore
20 Feb 11
Hi Midnightbliss, I understand what you mean. In an extended family unit, every inch of space is family space. It is hard to find a place where you can find privacy. The kids do not understand the concept of bedrooms being a private space. They can play hide and seek throughout the whole house.
• United States
17 Feb 11
Personally, I am generally a private person, and do not like large crowds,plus I love my space. I would have a hard time to staying in the same house with many people, rather they are family or not. It does not mean that I don't love my family any less, it is just a personal preference. I have many family gatherings out of town where everyone was staying in the same house, but my husband and I always ended up getting a motel room close by.
@scheng1 (24850)
• Singapore
20 Feb 11
Hi Sunshine, kids usually do not mind staying in the same room as the parents or siblings. However, as kids grow, private space becomes a very important concern. I think it is a good idea to have our own house, and yet live near our relatives, including parents and grandparents. In this case, we have the best of both worlds. We can decorate the house in a way we like, and we enjoy the companionship and love of our relatives.
@hlgmdt (301)
• Philippines
17 Feb 11
In my country, extended families living together is common because our culture values close family ties. However, personally, I wouldn't want to live with my extended family. I was born and raised in just my immediately family home, so I'm not used to sharing a house with a lot of people. I know that having large family may be happier especially during special occasions, but I'm afraid of losing my privacy and my personal space in such an arrangement. I also think that conflicts may arise in an extended family home because it will be difficult to identify and to have consensus with regards to who has the final say or who has to make the final decision.
@scheng1 (24850)
• Singapore
18 Feb 11
Hi Hlgmdt, I think only kids who are very innocent love to stay together in a big house. They do not know the value of personal space. It is no difference to them whether they sleep with their dogs or cousins or parents, as long as they are tired, they can fall asleep everywhere. However, for teens and adults, having a personal space is very important. Maybe it is a better idea for each to have a house, and stay near each other.
@mermaidivy (15417)
• United States
17 Feb 11
I won't call it bad but I would prefer to not living with my parents or grandparents. We have a saying in my country is it is fine to meet each other or gather together but it is rather difficult to live together. It would be perfectly fine that they live next door or close but not so much living together.
@scheng1 (24850)
• Singapore
18 Feb 11
Hi Mermaidivy, I agree that staying near each other is better. Each has his own personal space. Sometimes staying together does rub the wrong way, especially when it comes to the matter of placing personal items in the bathroom or refrigerator. I think if the house is very big, and can subdivide into many standalone apartments, that will be much better.
• United States
17 Feb 11
Not under the same roof for me at all. But,I live across the street from my mother. I live down the block from my brother,and around the corner from my sister. This is all fine with me as long as we don't share roof. I feel grown people should have their own place to call home.
@scheng1 (24850)
• Singapore
17 Feb 11
Hi Giftsandbagscom, that is definitely a very good idea. It is good to stay near each other, so that the relationship is intact and very strong. I think if all of you stay together, all of you may rub each other the wrong way. Sometimes the simplest thing like the way you mop the floor or the way you rearrange furniture can erupt into a long standing quarrel.
@Xplora (2)
• Nigeria
18 Feb 11
this differs a lot