Multi generation family having fun together outdoors

Is your family close-knit?

March 28, 2018
  • Yes, everyone gets along well for the most part
  • Somewhat. Overall I think we could be much closer
  • Nope, we put the FUN in dysFUNctional!

Ah, families. Whether you’re reminiscing about that wonderful Thanksgiving dinner, grumbling about a sibling rivalry, or watching the third re-run of “The Godfather”, the term ‘family’ evokes a plethora of emotions. But how close-knit is your family, really? Let’s embark on this rollercoaster of an exploration.

grandparents parents kids and cousins at a dinner table happy

1. Yes, everyone gets along well for the most part.

Cue the heartwarming scenes from movies like “The Sound of Music” or “The Pursuit of Happyness”. Families where everyone gets along might seem like a scene out of a Nicholas Sparks novel, but they exist! A survey showed that around 40% of Americans believe that their family is close-knit, often sharing activities, secrets, and sometimes, even the same favorite ice cream flavor.

Opting for this answer might mean that Sunday family brunches are a thing, group texts are abuzz with the latest family gossip, and disagreements, if any, are sorted over a friendly game of Scrabble or Monopoly.

Moreover, it’s worth noting that harmony doesn’t mean the absence of conflicts but how efficiently they’re resolved. As Mark Twain once remarked, “To us, family means putting your arms around each other and being there.”

family sitting in a cozy living room, each engrossed in their own activities like reading

2. Somewhat. Overall I think we could be much closer.

Now, this is where many families might find themselves. Picture the Weasleys from Harry Potter, loving but occasionally at odds with each other. While they might be wearing Christmas sweaters knitted by Mrs. Weasley, they’re also facing their fair share of sibling banter and arguments.

Choosing this answer could reflect a family that shares those special moments – birthdays, anniversaries, the occasional barbeque. Yet, there might be that yearning for deeper connections, perhaps reminiscent of the age-old sentiment, “Can’t live with them, can’t live without them”. After all, as George Bernard Shaw quipped, “If you cannot get rid of the family skeleton, you may as well make it dance.”

Interestingly, a survey showed that a good number of families feel that technology, busy lifestyles, or simple differences in personality and interests have caused a slight rift. But the silver lining? Recognizing there’s room for improvement is the first step to forging stronger bonds.

realistic painting of stern looking big family

3. Nope, we put the FUN in dysFUNctional!

A dash of chaos, a pinch of drama, and a sprinkle of unexpected adventures. If you’re nodding along, perhaps your family is similar to the eccentric Tenenbaums from “The Royal Tenenbaums” or the Griswolds from “National Lampoon’s Vacation”.

Opting for this answer means recognizing the quirks, the peculiar traditions, and the oh-so-unique dynamics that make your family, well, uniquely yours. Perhaps family gatherings often pivot from a calm dinner to an impromptu talent show or a heated debate on whether pineapple belongs on pizza. (It doesn’t, but we won’t get into that here.)

A survey revealed that almost 30% of people feel their family has its own brand of ‘crazy’. But hey, as the famous saying goes, “All happy families are alike; each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way.” – Thank you, Tolstoy.

realistic painting of stern looking big family

Tying the Knot (or Yarn) Together

The concept of family has been a cornerstone of countless songs (remember Sister Sledge’s “We Are Family”?), movies, and novels. It has been dissected, celebrated, and sometimes even dreaded. From Aristotle’s musings on familial bonds to the candid revelations in Augusten Burroughs’ “Running with Scissors”, the diverse nature of family relationships continues to intrigue and inspire.

So, when posed with the question, “Is your family close-knit?”, the answer might not be straightforward. It could be a harmonious melody, a work-in-progress chord, or a rock-n-roll anthem of wild turns. Whatever tune your family sings, it’s worth remembering that every family has its own rhythm, and each note, high or low, contributes to the grand symphony of life.

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