University of Phoenix
Dynamics of Family Systems
Dr. Theresa Goodman
December 02, 2013
Although the importance of family in the health of today’s society has been mentioned by many health care professionals, only since the mid-1990’s has the true significance of family in the well-being of humanity been fully recognized (Friedman, Bowden, & Jones, 2003). There has been “…little attention…paid to the family as an object of systematic study in nursing” (Friedman et al., 2003, p. 4). The health status of family members is directly influenced by the family, and vice versa (Friedman et al., 2003). Just as the concept of family used in one area of nursing practice may not be appropriate or helpful for a different area of practice, the theoretical foundation of family nursing used in one area may not be applicable in another.
Family Working as a System According to Friedman, Bowden, and Jones (2003), because the family unit is the most rudimentary unit of today’s society, “…it is the social institution that has the most marked effect on its members” (p. 4). For most, family is the most basic and lasting social connection. Family is also “…the fabric of our day-to-day lives and shapes the quality of our lives by influencing our outlook on life, our motivations, our strategies for achievement, and our styles for coping with adversity” (Fontaine, 2009, p. 37). A person’s success or failure in life can be determined by the quantity and the quality of influence the family has had on his or her development. There is a strong correlation between the family unit and the health status of its members. The role of the family is vital during every aspect of health promotion of its members. A family works as a system to promote the health of its members by having: open family communication; clear boundaries for familial roles; a moderate level of family cohesion and flexibility; emotional availability between
References: Fontaine, K. L. (2009). Mental Health Nursing (6th ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Education. Friedman, M. M., Bowden, V. R., & Jones, E. G. (2003). Family nursing: Research, theory and practice (5th ed.). [University of Phoenix Custom Edition e-Text]. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice-Hall. Retrieved from the University of Phoenix website. Leahey, M., & Svavarsdottir, E. K. (2009, September 25). Implementing family nursing: How do we translate knowledge into clinical practice? Journal of Family Nursing, 15(4), 445-460. http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/1074840709349070