Family Unity and Kids
It’s a familiar struggle: teens want to be out with their friends, and you want them to spend time with family. Creating unity requires planning.
What You Need To Know
Family unity is a bond formed through daily routines as well as special traditions that connect individuals to each other and create an identity as a unit. During pleasant activities and fun times, families build a reserve of good feelings and trust that helps them cope with crisis that can occur. Building and maintaining family unity serves everyone’s wellbeing.
How You Can Help
Unified families feel that they can depend on each other in "good" times and "bad". Establish meaningful traditions and organize fun activities to build a sense of unity with your family.
- Memories. Bring photos out and share them with stories that you recall. Grandparents’ wedding photos connects kids to ancestors and family heritage; a parents’ camping trip album gives kids history about your lives before they were born; baby pictures are an opportunity to share gratitude about kids’ arrival into the world; and vacation snapshots remind kids of the fun they’ve had over the years.
- Birthdays and Holidays. Invent special rituals like a birthday hat, meals tailored to the birthday kids’ wishes, and a special plate used only on birthdays. Likewise, develop a family version of Easter eggs filled with notes form mom and dad, stockings that contain funny socks to wear all day, and a gratitude bowl that holds everyone’s “things to be thankful for.”
- Activities. As kids grow up, the activities families plan need to advance as well. Ask your teen to help you change the headlights in your car, build a birdhouse for the big oak, take a classical music class with you, and watch movies every Sunday evening with pizza.
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