Family Communication Collage Jessica Hallett CMS 332 3/27/11
Family Type My family would be classified as a two- parent biological family. My parents have been married for 27years and produced two biological children, myself and my 19 year old brother. Though many of my friends are also from the same type of family, Galvin, Bylund and Brommel (2008) state, “This type of family no longer represents the most common family form in the United States” (p. 7)
Communication Functions “Each family’s unique message system provides the means of dealing with the major functions that give shape to family life” (Galvin, Bylund and Brommel, 2008, P. 29). My family has always been very close and open. Everyone within my family shares there joys and sorrows with one another. We spend a very large amount of time together. Though we do like to do some things on our own. Looking at the four different levels of cohesion my family would most likely be considered connected. Galvin, Bylund and Brommel (2008) explain stating, “Family members strive for emotional closeness, loyalty, and joint involvement with some individuality.
Family Themes and Images “Essentially, themes represent a fundamental view of reality and a way of dealing with this view” (p. 39, Galvin, Bylund & Brommel, 2008). My families theme is: Your family will always support you – My family members are the people I go to with all news, good or bad. I trust their opinions and know that they will support me no matter what.
Family Themes and Images Cont. “Every family operates as an image-making or metaphor-creating entity” (Galvin, Bylund, Brommel, 2008, p. 37) Within my family we have a few images that best describe us.As a whole, a nest or a pack Growing up my mother always described herselfof wolves best explain us. as a mother bear…and proved it many times!
Making Meaning 1.Sarcasm - Sarcasm is used regularly in my household; it is never very vicious it is just a way we joke around with one another. My brother and father being goofy in the pictures below: 2.Nurturing Environment - In my household no one is sent to deal with problems or issues alone, we are always there for one another and are constantly helping solve each other’s problems. The phrase "Get over it" or "Toughen up" are not used in my house.
Making Meaning Cont. 3. Hard work is a given not asked of us - Everyone in my house works and works hard. If a family member is working in the yard we all go out to help. Its not asked of us it is just expected. We always work together until the job is done, no matter if it benefits us individually or not.We all help around the house, like whenthe house needed to be painted we allpitched in.Growing up in a family business hasmade us all hard workers from a youngage. This picture is of my amazinggrandfather, my cousin and myselfwhen I was very young in our solargreenhouses my father built.
Rituals “Repetition of actions and words carries great meaning, eventually developing into ongoing family rituals. The special meanings and the repetitive nature contribute significantly to the establishment and preservation of a family’s identity or relational culture” (Galvin, Bylund & Brommel, 2008, p.116). Some smaller My family has been going to our camp on Moosehead Lake rituals would be; for over 20 years. It is one of our most cherished family rituals. My father always takes me to the airport when I travel. It is an unspoken ritual but one we both depend on. My mother and I text “I love you more”, then the other person will text “I love you the most” or “I’m the mom I win” It’s a small goofy ritual but we do it every single day.
Family Roles Everyone in my family has a role, but we are also a family that does not see the point in only one person being responsible for one thing. For example, both my parents work full time, so they are both family providers. My brother and I feel comfortable talking to either one of them about our problems and emotions. We work more as a team, all filling in for one another at one point or another. Below is how I best describe our intertwining roles:Lisa (Mother) - FinancialProvider, emotional nurturing(hugs, kisses etc.), financialplanner, handy around thehouse.Jeff (Father) - Financialprovider, realist, the joker, thepersons we go to when weneed to talk about futuredecisions, our cars, or generallife experience. He is veryhandy around the house. He isalso the main cook in ourfamily, always making dinnerand breakfast.
Family Roles Cont.Lee (brother)- the calm and collected member, he is never worried. Hard worker, the brain ofall random information. The rebel of the family, he is always getting into harmless trouble.Myself (daughter/Sister) - The want to be “princess.” The worrier, I worry about everything.The crier (I require a lot of support and time from all family members). The overly responsibleperson, emotional support for the entire family, my brothers tutor, the academic child.
Family Typology “Pluralistic families, high in conversation orientation and low in conformity, have open communication and emotional supportiveness in their families” (Galvin, Bylund &Brommel, 2008, P. 177).Our family is very open. We encourage each other to talk about everything, good orbad.
Decision Making “Decision Making is the process by which family members make choices, reach judgment, or arrive at solutions that end uncertainty” (Galvin, Bylund &Brommel, 2008, P.201).Decision making is a team effort inour family. We all respect eachothers opinions and try to alwaysconsult one another when adilemma has come up.When looking at decision makingstyles our family most always usesconsensus, using compromise andflexibility to reach an agreement.However my brother and Idefinitely look up to our parentsand take their advice veryseriously.
Conflict Though my family rarely fights, when we do everyone is involved. Gavlin, Bylund & Brommel (2008) state, “Because of family member’s interdependence, a conflict between two members of the family will affect other members” (P. 219). Common styles of conflict in our household are collaboration or compromise. No one enjoys being mad or tense with one another so we work hard to find answers. When conflict does accrue we normally all take some private time to think about what has happened and then come back to discuss and solve the issue.
My Personal Definition of Family At this point in my life I would define family as a support system and the people who make us who we are. I am lucky enough to have always had an amazing relationship with my parents and brother. I grew up in a family business so I learned quickly how to communicate with all of my family members including aunts, uncles, cousins and grandparents. Though my blood relatives are incredibly important to me and the people I depend on; I do not think that being biologically related is necessarily important. Family friends that are my parent’s age, my friends, my husband and his family have also proved to inspire and shape me as well as supported me throughout hard times. Family is the people who will do anything to protect you and have your best interest in mind. They stick with you no matter what and do not disappear at signs of trouble. At this point in my life blood relation doesn’t define family; support, dependability, communication and love do. Here are some pictures of my “family”: