Family Ties Suffer in a Complex World
Family ties are a complicated matter in our contemporary world. The internet makes it possible to send a message around the world almost instantaneously, and many North Americans are now working from home or taking jobs that will see them travelling or working abroad at least some of the time. But globalization also means a larger number of families are being scattered across the country and around the world. Whereas earlier generations saw multiple branches of the same clan growing up in the same hometown and attending the same schools, we now see many cases where siblings live far apart, children live far away from their parents, and young people grow up never knowing what it is to be surrounded by uncles, aunts, cousins and grandparents.
Strengthening Family Ties at a Distance
In my generation, most young people grew up knowing their grandparents and their cousins. It was common for two or more branches of the family to vacation together or to come together to celebrate holidays around one table. Today it is harder to organize such events. Somebody always has to work, or is living too far away to travel. Family ties are tested by the distance , and by the increasingly hectic pace of contemporary life.
Some tools you can use to preserve family ties at a distance include:
Facebook, YouTube and other social media - for sharing photos, videos and quick updates;
video chat apps like Skype or FaceTime – for face to face chats at a distance;
a blog or a group on a platform like Google+ or Facebook – for sharing more detailed news;
video or audio messages – to record a bedtime story, song, or other greeting that a child can play over and over;
post card and snail mail or parcel exchanges - these add an extra dimension to virtual communications!
There are no hard and fast rules about how you should go about preserving or strengthening family ties in this complex, globally oriented world. Just think about what media you prefer and what makes you happy! If it works for you and your loved ones, then it's right. And if you try something and it doesn't work for you, that's OK too. Working on family relationships at a distance may be a challenge, but it's not a competition!
Note: This content has been adapted from an original piece by the author, which has since been removed from Seraphic Insights
Image Credit » https://pixabay.com/en/baby-handle-tiny-father-family-428395/ by jarmoluk