My definition of family for this purpose is the traditional model, a married man and woman who have a child or more, are morally sound and take the upbringing of their child or children seriously. Now, some might see it in a different way and that's their choice, but remember, I am writing this from my own experience and what it has taught me.
For thousands of years the traditional family has existed and today it is under more threat than ever before despite its advantages if those involved take their commitments seriously. For a child to be raised by a father and a mother who love each other and strive to develop their child into a good moral citizen is a tough task, but the two sexes play a critical role. Fathers are looked up to by little children as their protector, the mother fulfills a much more nurturing role. Together, they play the key formative year role of making the child feel safe and secure in a comfortable home setting while all the time learning more and more that helps shape what he or she becomes. When something adversely impacts that situation, other things enter and if they are not positive and uplifting, it can alter the course.
In my own life example, my father died when I was nine. Thankfully, I had him in my life to develop my masculine self in a positive way; dad always insisted on gentlemanly ways around women and respect for elders. That has always served me well. And when he died and Mom worked so hard to keep things safe and secure, she also knew I needed decent and God-fearing men in my life to be role models and to discuss those things that boys need to discuss with a man. I was fortunate to have a number of such men who stepped up and were kind and gave me time when I needed it.
There was my minister, a man who always checked on me as I grew into a teenager. I'll say more about him in a later post. There was the elderly neighbor who had been a pretty good semi-pro baseball player in his day who would encourage me and frequently come to my baseball games to cheer me on. And there was the retired Coast Guard officer during those "Summers at Old Nags Head" who invited me to help with his fishing operation and always gave me the time to talk about manly things during the summer months. There were others as well and I thank them all for their help. I was truly blessed to have these people in my life, and while they weren't my dad, they made growing up without a father so much easier. But none of it would have been possible without a mother who dedicated her life to her children.
Now, I could go on but I think it should be clear what I mean by what I write. My parents loved me, they encouraged me and yes, they even scolded me when it was deserved. But they instilled in my heart the concept of the Golden Rule which I have tried to live by and they were the first of the five F's which determined my course as an adult.
I've made my mistakes from time to time, after all, I am a mere mortal as we all are. But I know that this traditional formulation of family which started me on a positive and productive course was a good one for me and I can't speak for anyone but me. I hope all of you have been so fortunate, for it truly made a big difference. It was a difference that made my life one of light and not darkness.
The next topic will be Faith, a natural follow on for a boy brought up in a Christian household. Once again, there are certainly other courses which can direct you in a good and positive way but I only have my own experience to guide my life and I think anyone who reads my book, "Summers at Old Nags Head," will see the connection to my life.
Here's the link to the book in both Amazon Prime and Kindle Unlimited formats. I hope you might give it a look: