Marriage and Family Life Unit 7: Responding to Family Challenges
Objective 1: Identify changes and challenges that have a major impact on families. • Abuse and neglect • Addiction • Alcoholism and drug abuse • Addition of a new child • Career change • Crime • Death of a family member • Depression • Disaster • Divorce • Gambling • Health problems • Homelessness • Job loss or chronic unemployment • Relocation/moving • Remarriage • Retirement • Sudden financial change • Violence
Objective 2: Determine the impact of aging on the family. • As older people experience a loss of health, loss of independence, and reliance on a fixed income, greater strain is placed on other family members. • Being in the “sandwich generation” can be a stressful situation that places great demands on the caregiver. • As younger people watch family members grow older, they may be reminded of their own aging process.
Objective 2: Determine the impact of aging on the family. • Roles and relationships may change between family members. • Many older adults continue to lead active and productive lives. • Arranging for quality elder care can challenge families who may already be dealing with the guilt of having to leave the parent.
Objective 3: Distinguish among housing alternatives available to older family members. • Staying at home • Sharing housing • Moving in with relatives • Joining a retirement community • Joining a continuing care retirement community • Entering an assisted living center • Entering a nursing home
Objective 4: Differentiate between benefits and challenges of multi-generation families. Benefits • Older adults may help the family financially and with raising or caring for children. • Age and experience give a unique perspective on life to share with younger generations. • Intergenerational relationships can provide companionship and security for all family members. • Extended kinship families give a sense of the past and identity to its members.
Objective 4: Differentiate between benefits and challenges of multi-generation families. Challenges • Elder abuse may occur due to added stress on a caregiver. • Adjustments must be made to accommodate the older adult. • More responsibility for eldercare may be placed on the younger generation. • The older adult may assume to be the head of the household, which may cause friction.
Objective 5: Determine how in-laws can have a positive or negative impacton families. Positive Impact • In-laws may provide financial assistance to the family. • In-laws may provide non-financial support to the family such as providing child care. • In-laws may be able to provide advice that they have gained through their years of living.
Objective 5: Determine how in-laws can have a positive or negative impacton families. Negative Impact • In-laws who try to interfere or influence the family may put an undue stress on the relationship. • If the family is in business with in-laws, the business relationship may strain the family relationship. • A poor relationship between the in-laws and the family may cause resentment in the family and strain the ties between marriage partners.
Objective 6: Identify issues facing family members due to a death. • Legal/financial issues • Emotional issues • Burial issues • Lifestyle issues
Objective 7: Identify guidelines for handling personal grief due to loss. • Accept the reality of the loss • Accept support from people who care • Allow yourself to express emotions, to talk and to cry. • Realize that grieving is a natural process. • Remember the good things about the person, place, or thing that is gone. • Realize that the grieving process takes time. • Write a gratitude journal. • Help others. • Recognize that everyone grieves in different ways.
Objective 10: Identify resources for withstanding a crisis. • Personal resources • Mental health resources • Physical health • Financial resources • Family relationships • Support of friends • Employee Assistance Program • Community resources • Crisis hotline • Emergency shelters • Private/non-profit organizations • Professional counseling services • Religious or spiritual groups • Social service agencies/ organizations • Support groups
Objective 12: Identify guidelines for facing a crisis. • Face and accept the situation • Acknowledge feelings about the crisis; do not ignore your emotions • Remain open to the efforts of other people to help or support you • Think through needs, wishes, alternatives, capabilities and resources • When you cannot stop dwelling on the crisis, do something to help take your mind off the situation and help you feel better