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Scot Wilcox

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How do we save the family?

According to many, the family as we know it is changing. Divorce, separation, children out of wedlock, high workloads and decreased time together seem to be rendering the nuclear family as null and void. How can we prevent this? Do we need to prevent it? What problems are brought about by the disintegration of the family? Are there any benefits from it? Your opinions are welcome.
There's been a host of research done on the benefits of a two-parent, stable home to children. Increased financial, emotional, and even medical welfare seem to derive from the nuclear family. I believe it's the fundamental building block of society. Kids without strong role models and mentoring in the home seem to have more difficulties succeeding. If the homes the children are raised in fall apart, those children are going to have a much more difficult time. I'm certainly not saying any kid whose parents get divorced is doomed to failure. That's just not true. But I do know that divorce, or the problems in the marriage that caused it, cause emotional damage that lasts for years.
If the new generation is raised in a world where there are no more permanent relationships, how will that change our society?

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Closing Statement from Scot Wilcox

Dang, the debate closed long before we even got really started! I wish we could open this back up again so I could reply to all your comments. I did want to talk to Grace Greene and Random Chance though. You both seem to have grown up in broken homes. By that I mean a home where the nuclear family didn't work. The balance was off. I obviously don't know the details, but it seems very clear to me that a nuclear family done wrong is much worse than no family at all. A nuclear family does not need to spell oppression for women, it doesn't need to be founded on lies. The possibilities for love, openness, education, and even training for careers and human relationships is endless with educated, qualified parents who are committed to doing it right. They have their priorities straight, with each other and their children elevated above their own welfare. I wish we could have more families like this. I feel like then at least 90 percent of our society's problems could be solved. Unfortunately, the kind of personal and spiritual growth necessary to get to that point is a very personal thing that can't be legislated and can't be forced. That's what I feel will save the family. Better parents.

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    Feb 7 2013: By your standards, I was raised in a nuclear family. I never heard my parents have an argument. We ate dinner as a family every night. I was never beaten. We weren't rich, but we didn't know that we were poor. It was the same throughout my neighborhood.

    But I would never wish my childhood on anyone. As Random Chance said so well, "It was all a lie". I was not prepared to live in the world as it exists outside of that lie. When I left home, I didn't even know that it was a lie, so I began living the lie as my truth.

    My life experience includes learning that as a woman, it was my responsibility to be subservient - to serve - to subdue my own desires if my husband's desires were different - to support his desires in any way that I could. I had no sense of "self". This did incalculable damage to me. I was "set up" for failure from the start. It was a very abusive thing to do to not only the girls, but the boys that they would one day marry.

    If the end of the nuclear family means that our children will grow up with a more clear understanding of how the world works, with a more clear understanding of who and what they are as humans, and with a sense of purpose that does not include demeaning others in order to lift one's own self (lack of self-esteem), then it's a good thing.

    But if the end of the nuclear family does not achieve these things, I don't see that the child is any worse off except perhaps economically. And in my view, money doesn't determine the value of a person, nor does it limit the individual in any MEANINGFUL way.
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      Feb 7 2013: RE: "our children will grow up with a more clear understanding of how the world works, with a more clear understanding of who and what they are as humans"

      What does this mean?
      How does the world "Work?"
      Who are we as "humans?"
      What is our "purpose"?

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