The question “who are the most important persons in the family?” will unfold diverse perspectives based on person’s life circumstances and lived-experiences: generations, cultural backgrounds, age groups, professions, educational attainment, social status, and most of all family life conditions.
In “John Rosemond: Your Kids Should Not Be The Most Important,” John Rosemond emphasizes that parents are the most important persons in the family, since children exist because of them and their marriage. Further, he explains that “many, if not most, of the parents’ problems were caused by their children and parents have a false conception that family exists because of their progenies.” Conversely, Rosemond’s assertions are fallible and simply based on his personal opinion. His arguments, which only focus on family duties and responsibilities, are bias, fallacious, and opinionated. He must consider lived-experiences and thoughts of broken family members and rethink his proposition. Too, one must consider the fact that there are people who were abandoned by parents around the world, yet survived their childhood. Rosemond’s question is divisive and degrading in nature, inappropriate and awkward, and dubious in purpose. Nevertheless, it is a test of one’s wisdom.
Saying that “no person is more or less important in the family” is the best way to oppose his wrong belief. Deposing his arguments, it is necessary to note that family is composed of parents and at least one child or children; that parents have consecrated roles of procreation and stewardship to their offspring to be good persons and productive citizens; that members of the family must not be categorized by importance; and the strong familial relationship is the most important thing in a family.
When Rosemond argues that “treating the children as if they, their marriage, and their family exist[s] because of the kids,” it seems that he neither forgets nor he does not know the basic meaning and concept of what family is. It is a fact that family is a composition of the parents and their child or children. Parents become parents because of their child or their children. A married man and a woman will remain a couple and they will just be called parents – father and mother – if they have a child or children, who give more meaning to their marriage. That is a simple yet vivid delineation of what family is and becoming a parent. If the couples value more of their relationship, they can opt to remain a couple and they must decide not to have children.
From a family to a more complex social organizations, “who is the most important?” is an egocentric and stereotypical question. People must not be categorized by importance, instead they could be characterized by their roles and responsibilities. Classifying the most important person in a particular group is a continuous debate. Rosemond cited that in a classroom, the most important person is the teacher and to analogize parents as the most important persons in the family. By saying so, if there were no students, what is the teacher then? It is the importance of human roles and relationships that Rosemond neglects in his argument, which each one is dependent to one other. Those title roles and relationships give meaning to the role of the teacher and the students, as well as the function of the school. The same is true in the family.
The points of view of Rosemond were grounded on duties and responsibilities of family members. Nonetheless, it is acceptable and undeniable that parents have the most important accountabilities over their children. Profoundly, married man and woman has a sanctified role as procreators, so they become parents; as stewards to their children, so they become good persons or believers; and as good model to their offspring, so they become disciplined and productive citizens. On the other hand, it is a prejudice, irresponsibility, and insanity to blame the causes of many, if not all, family problems to children as Rosemond speculates. Parents who view family dynamics, as Rosemond does, needs an extensive marriage life counselling and good parenting program. The profound source of family problems are unhealthy relationship, emotional immaturity and psychological disparity, and financial prioritization among other things between husbands and wives – the parents. They must be matured enough to take responsibility and perform their roles in making a happy home. So, neglecting the preceding family issues will lead to family breakdown.
Rosemond explores that “parents’ marriages were more important to them than their relationships with [their children]” by concluding “Therefore, we did not sleep in their beds or interrupt their conversations. The family meal, at home, was regarded as more important than after-school activities.” His analysis was superficial. The foregoing quotations imply discipline (obedience to simple house rules), reverence to privacy (not sleeping on/in parents’ bed or room), respect (do not interrupt elders’ conversations), and family accord (eating family meal together). Such things are examples of good values, good manners, and right conduct toward good citizenship.
The very foundation of humanity is the family – the basic unit of the society – where life values are founded, nurtured, and transpired toward the greater society. The family is the simplest and perfect personification of any social institutions where good leadership is set by example: the values of equality, respect, teamwork, humility, and compassion. Therefore, uncertain and contentious family inquest devalues the family itself, as the foremost societal institution. In a family, parents and children are of equal importance; albeit, they differ in roles and functions. Labeling family members by importance is unnecessary and demeaning. Children are parents’ accountability and that is a reality. Selflessly performing parental obligations is a great social responsibility and a given divine mission. Henceforth, there are more significant family issues to focus on, which will strengthen and reinforce the importance of the family in the society than underscoring entitlement in its structure.
Rosemond, John. “Your kids should not be the most important.” John Rosemond Tribune News Service. January 1, 2017. Web. https://lacrossetribune.com/lifestyles/relationships-and-special-occasions/john-rosemond-your-kids-should-not-be-the-most-important/article_e61f4a20-c15e-53c6-ba51-e86af16ab957.html
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