Over the past four decades, the American family has been drastically altered. In today’s society, the decline of the traditional family is relatively normal. There are increasingly more single mothers or fathers raising their children than 50 years ago, creating a problem in a child’s upbringing. The question of why families are breaking up is something that needs to be addressed. Since this is one of society’s biggest problems, this issue needs to be taken care of. The nuclear family normally consists of two parents and their children. (pg. 11) In the 1950’s, for instance, that is how families were set up. The father was responsible for bringing the money home and the food on the table. The mother was the other vital part of the family, taking on the responsibilities in the household, such as cooking, cleaning, and raising the children. Families have worked like this since early times in the history of humanity. This was part of a gender role ideology which refers to beliefs about proper role relationships between men and women in a society. (pg. 43) However, in today do society things have dramatically changed. It is no longer self-evident to have two parental figures living in the same household, working together to create a stable family. In this generation, it is sadly normal to grow up with only one parent.
Divorce has affected the nuclear family model dramatically and has led to a huge increase in single parent families. This can have a serious effect on children such as not doing well in school to being depressed. Children who grow up in homes where their parents are married but who constantly fight also clearly suffer in terms of their subjective well-being. (pg 450) So in ways divorce can also be a positive impact to benefit the children. Divorce has also led to an increase in remarriages. Once remarried, women or men are at a higher risk to getting divorced again. The decline of first-time marriages has led to the average marriage age increasing,...
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