“I have lived through much, and now I think I have found what is needed for happiness. A quiet secluded life in the country, with the possibility of being useful to people to whom it is easy to do good, and who are not accustomed to having it done to them; then work which one hopes may be of some use; then rest, nature, books, music, love for one’s neighbor — such is my idea of happiness. And then, on the top of all that, you for a mate, and children perhaps — what more can heart of man desire?” – Leo Tolstoy
Family- a closed, fine structured colossal of love and affection. The lives of humans fundamentally revolve around people who tend to care for them. By blood, growth, or intention, we as humans accept and live together with people who love us.
Over a long period, the structure and formation of families have continually been influenced by changes in society, culture, religion, and many such factors. However, we as Indians are accustomed to large families comprising at least two to three generations.
As modernization rooted out, people started reprimanding family member’s interference in their personal and economic matters, and thus families were torn apart. Overpopulation is another reason that caused the drift in various joint families.
The government issued various rules and policies to manage overpopulation in India. The first policy was the “two children,” then it was “one for one.” In the future, the government will probably ask us not to have children at all and be satisfied with our partners.
Is this the right paradigm shift in Human Civilisation? What are the benefits of living together as a joint family? And what are its ill effects? Why does it not work out anymore?
The fruitfulness of a Joint family
Sometimes in life, we will need people other than our parents to share certain things, feel hassle-free, and express ourselves. Sometimes cousins, uncles, aunts, grandmas, and grandpas make us feel more belonged and shed affection that brings tears to our eyes. Joint families take away our loneliness and stress, and each day spent with the members of a joint family feels like a carnival. We can stay occupied, develop our love and affection, become kind, and live our lives more purposefully and soulfully.
Some things that happen in a joint family can never be acquired from nuclear families.
The pocket money we get from our Grandma before going to school. The support from cousins when mom is scolding us, ride on our uncle’s bike, cuddling, and hustling with siblings and cousins, family picnics, festival occasions and summer vacations are the peak merriment in joint families. These events help us experience the storm of joyousness while forgetting all worldly affairs and getting involved in the present moment.
Joint families do make us more humane.
Bitter sweet facts
Now a days, people contain in themselves most intricate feelings and thoughts and all they want is a free secluded space to clear their minds. Those household chaos at the mornings and before sleep in the joint families cannot be tolerated by people who go to work stressed and come home double stressed.
The ultimate aim of an average Indian citizen is to own a house and a car. Buying an apartment for a joint family that contains 7 to 10 members is like turning a mountain upside down.
Need for the children’s and our own plans and investments had become inevitable in life. A joint family means more expenses, and one man alone might not afford it all.
Accepting that we are running alongside a materialistic life, joint families do not tend to fit into this catastrophe of the human world that was once stated as the idea of happiness by Tolstoy.
Some good reasons are that couples will need space to stay romantic. People need space to discuss certain personal things. We may not like the idea of getting judged based on our actions by members of the family.
Finally, even though joint families seem to be the better idea of happy living, it cannot sustain in these fast-forwarding days of ours. However, we can use various social media platforms to stay connected with our family members, outrunning the mishappenings of traditional joint family and bringing in the fruitfulness that had been entertained from it.