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=> Indian families

Family has always been at the base of Indian society. Most of the Indians take pride in the essence of family life. However the recent changes in the socio-political and economic arena have had a significant impact on individuals and families. India is a country that truly befits the phrase” unity in diversity” with so many religions, languages, cultures, castes and yet the oneness that binds them together. Each family unit in India is influenced by his or her cultures and values. Indian joint family system was quite prevalent a few years back. However, with western influences, more and more people are now willing to stay as a nuclear family especially in urban areas. Traditional roles in family structure are now changing but even modern and educated families imbibe the intrinsic values of family life in India.

Family ties are very important to Indians. Arranged marriages within the caste system are still very much prevalent all over the country. The traditional role of a man to support the family economically and the traditional role of a woman to look after the domestic chores can be seen in rural areas. Working women which are now common in urban areas are still expected to fulfill their domestic responsibilities.

The Indian family is being exposed to fast paced lifestyles that are taxing considering the structure of family as a social institution. Indian families and their mental set up are not well prepared to confront the competitive and challenging world of today. Most young Indians face a dilemma when exposed to a new pattern of living and a different set of values as against those which were promoted by their parents and grandparents.

Most Indian families are conservative and sons are always more preferred than daughters as sons normally earn money for the family and support their parents during their old age. Indian family life has its own merits and demerits. With a family, there is emotional security, co-operation, values etc.

However individual freedom might get restrained. Sharing and caring is another important aspect that Indian joint families believe in. An Indian family typically consists of a man, his wife, their children, the man’s parents and unmarried sisters, if any. The man mostly make his parents live with him and looks after them. The family system is given a lot of importance in India and has worked more often than not.

Most Indian marriages are arranged and within the community. Normally, the parents of the prospective spouses get together either through a common relative or through a matchmaker. Most Indians get together with their family and celebrate Indian festivals like diwali, holi, navratri etc with great joy.

The rigid Indian family system in imbibed in the culture of India and though changes are taking place, it will require a very long period of time for Indians to change their living patterns.

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