To Survive, We Must Return to the Extended Family
#1
From a Fish Eaters tweet:

This David Brooks article is long, but don't let that stop you. The nuclear family is a dead end, he writes:

https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/arc...ke/605536/

So too 'Americanism' and the individualism that gave us the LGBT+. Does this mean we are helpless to do anything about it? Nonsense. Maybe I can't help those who don't want my company but I can begin with those who do.

"There is another proverb," Chesterton writes, "'As you have made your bed, so you must lie on it'; which again is simply a lie. If I have made my bed uncomfortable, please God I will make it again."

How can we 'remake the bed' in our families?
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#2
Yes, we will have the extended family because
* stagnant wages
and
* a cost of living that is huge and rising quickly

means that individual families living in separate houses is not going to happen anymore.
--BobCatholic 
I'm praying for the souls in purgatory. Come, let's empty Purgatory with Jesus' help!
 
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#3
Interesting article. It made me think about something I hadn’t before considered. Younger generations are constantly called “weak” but how could broken families possibly raise strong, capable adults? Food for thought.

Anthropologists tend to think that the economics of a region determine its kinship structure. Would you propose returning to an agrarian society in order to bring back the family clan? Some potential to fix other societal problems, but tough to convince people.

Personally, if my husband told me his mother and brother were going to share a living space with us, or even if my mother-in-law were going to move to the same town as us, I would burst into tears. My MIL comes to “help” and somehow creates more work for me (more cooking, more laundry, more cleaning). I avoid being alone with her as much as possible, or else have to endure her bullying and criticism. At one point, the in-laws used my husband as a personal bank, because “we’re all we have” so of course he needs to bail them out of their self-inflicted problems. I am glad to live far away from my in-laws.

I grew up in a “clan” though, and I miss my family. All the cousins and aunts and uncles and grandparents. Having a baby is so much easier when the family is around.

So if I get to choose which extended family, sure, but if everything were to revert back to the woman gets absorbed into her husband’s family by default, then...no, thank you.
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#4
Can a person really grow and find their own voice when they won’t step out their parents’ or grandparents’ shadows? I guess it also begs the question of whether or not they should. I refused, and doing so served me very well. I’ve watched other people do the opposite. Some have managed just fine that way, and others have been held back by it. I guess it depends on the family. It would have been such a bad idea for my own situation that the thought of that kind of living repulses me.
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#5
A return to small close knit ethnically and religiously homogeneous kinship groups living in a mostly agrarian society is a great idea but I doubt it's possible to go back.  People have been so uprooted and disconnected it's pretty hard to imagine a way back under current conditions. 

I'm not sure what the way forward is if I'm perfectly frank. There's no possibility for true unity without a whole universe of shared symbols,  history,  religion, language (in the broad and narrow sense)  and landscape (place). It's all been broken up by forced multiculturalism, war,  ecumenism and "free market" capitalism which demands every corner of the planet open itself up to corporate monopolies and exploitation.  

At heart I'm a pessimist. I don't think there's any going back short of trying to build anew after some apocalyptic collapse that forces people as groups to return to essentials.  Under the current system it's not enough just to have a few extended families being there for each other.  A unified culture is must deeper and richer than just that, and must extend to all those aspects of life I mentioned above.  The whole society has to be involved.
Walk before God in simplicity, and not in subtleties of the mind. Simplicity brings faith; but subtle and intricate speculations bring conceit; and conceit brings withdrawal from God. -Saint Isaac of Syria, Directions on Spiritual Training


"It is impossible in human terms to exaggerate the importance of being in a church or chapel before the Blessed Sacrament as often and for as long as our duties and state of life allow. I very seldom repeat what I say. Let me repeat this sentence. It is impossible in human language to exaggerate the importance of being in a chapel or church before the Blessed Sacrament as often and for as long as our duties and state of life allow. That sentence is the talisman of the highest sanctity. "Father John Hardon
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#6
"A unified culture is must deeper and richer than just that, and must extend to all those aspects of life I mentioned above.  The whole society has to be involved."

Oh, I agree. The only thing I can think of is to move where you are able to care for elderly and sick/weak family members. Defend them as best you can, knowing you yourself may not be afforded the same kindness.

Thanks to all who responded. You made essential points and gave good food for thought.
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