The American family today, has the same problems that the American family of yesterday had. Daniel A. Sugarman, a psychologist in “Family Practice” introduces us to several case studies that seem to be the main nucleus of family problems today. He has put together a system called “Seven Ways to Keep the Peace at Home,” in which he describes seven different problems within our American households today that can cause daily emotional and physical pain within the family structure. The Seven case studies are based on children’s values that are driven by their parents emotions.
Giving up the myth of the perfect Family,” is the starting point. This is where the parents low self esteem is driven into their child. The next step, “Tell it like you feel It,” describes how families should share their feelings and not hold them in. After that comes, “Don’t play telephone”, this is where a third person is used to communicate between two parties. Another step is, “Make your blueprints Flexible,” you should not pre-plan your child’s life for them. Then he goes into the next step, which is about Contracts called, “Learn to use contracts.
With this step the family makes contracts with one another and then monitors and up dates them so often. This helps with everybody holding to their end of the deal when it comes to the family issues. One of the worst steps of all is, “Stop the “Good Guy-“Bad Guy, ” routine. I feel that having someone to blame for every problem that arises can devastate a child. Parents need to think about what they are going to say before they say it. The last step is, “Get rid of old emotional Baggage,” I have personal experience in this category. I had a hard time in letting go of the old when trying to start new.
These seven steps that Dr. Sugarman has came up with are great ideas in dealing with Family problems. Parents are the teachers and kids are the students. Students can only learn by observing and role playing. Parents have to incorporate the daily stresses of life and vent their emotions and adult matters outside of the classroom and learn that what they do and say will be the example they set for their children. This will eventually lead to a happier household. Families have to work at being families everyday and always remember that, “Their is no perfect family. “