The most supported idea (over 8o%) was that the perfect family would be
- a family full of support, affection and belief in you
This was despite the fact that half the group agreed that
- family can be seen as a restriction
Overall, we had two main points of view represented in the debate, those supporting a traditional, strong, nuclear family and those who took a more fluid view.
Threats to families in today’s world
Families are seen as facing some challenges today – from societal changes and other distractions
Family life has changed from a nostalgia of sledging and Sunday tea to a confusing, challenging chaos
- Anti-social behaviour
Changing state of families
But the changes are not all problematic. The new openness of the idea of family is also seen by many as an opportunity
- Cultural diversity is a challenge not a threat
- Monocultures are easier to manage but don’t offer the same opportunities.
- More varied structures have potential to accommodate a greater number of individual needs
Meanwhile, most of us are part of a family, so what should we do for the best? These ideas were supported by the group:
- So we’ll go through a messy patch – and then… brave new world
- Parenting today is more about leadership than dictatorship
Support each other
- Accepting that being a family doesn’t mean necessarily living under one roof
- A general broadening of the sense of ‘family’
For the authorities
- Challenge organisations who still produce forms that are impossible to fill in if you’re not a “proper” family
- Minister: promote positive family models, based on values and behaviour, not structure
- More inclusiveness then exclusiveness
If you have connections with any such group or individuals and could help to set something up then please contact the Thinking Tank to discuss how we could make this happen.
If you have personal concerns on these issues then there are various organizations working positively in this area who may be able to help you.
If you represent such an organization and would like a link from this page, please let us know.
If you would like to see a full list of statements please email me