Roles of Children in the Family: Family is a union of people who are either related by blood, marriage or adoption. From this definition, children can be related as family by blood or adoption. Family is the first and the smallest unit of socialization. In the family, there are certain roles and obligations which are bequeathed by norms, humanity and culture to each and every member of the family.
These roles cannot perfect the family or be perfected while being performed in isolation. In other words, in order to achieve a homely family, each and every member of the family is required to play certain roles which are culturally, morally, religiously, socially or otherwise assigned. The roles of children in the family is a very vital one of which when the demand is not met, may and in most cases does in fact affect the atmosphere and the expected homely nature of a family.
Family can either be nuclear or extended family. To whichever extent it is, the roles of children still remain applicable, although some of the roles are more particular and direct with the nuclear family. Here are some of the roles of children in the family.
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7 Important Duties and Roles of children in the family
Housekeeping generally is the chores of maintaining a house by performing tasks which contributes to cleanliness and habitability of the house.
It is the direct responsibility of the children to foresee to the cleanliness of the house. It is in fact uncultured to have the father or the mother do the cleanings whereas there are children in the house. Of course children handle chores according to their age and capability. There are certainly some kind of heavy chores which kids are not expected to perform.
Yes, in some cases the kids may be too tender to handle certain given task properly. This is where the parental role comes in because we pointed out earlier that the roles in the family cannot be perfected in isolation. Naturally, children are shown to learn vicariously. They can capture and retain what their eyes sees with ease. They also tend to adapt and get used to certain kind of chores as they grow, progress and get themselves doing it.
Therefore parents at some point and of course at the early stage of the children may be necessitated to perform certain house chores as the children keeps growing for them to master the best way around it. This does not in any way take the role and responsibility of housekeeping away from the children. It is in fact their most primary responsibility.
This very role of housekeeping has a positive contribution to the psychological and social adaptation of children as they keep growing into the existing world. They from the practice, learn the maintenance and managerial skill. They also learn neatness which is a personal and social skill. Asides the fact that this shapes them into humanity, housekeeping remains the role of children in the family.
2. Duty to Take Care of Siblings:
Children has this responsibility of taking care of their siblings, especially the younger ones. This is the level at which children learn the act of humanity in their relations with other people in the society, and of course fosters love and peaceful coexistence amongst the family.
3. Duty to Protect and Uphold the Family Image
It is the role of the children to protect and uphold the image of the family. This is quite a sensitive role and most times it does not demand any positive or intentional performance. Ordinarily, every home desires a peaceful atmosphere and an honourable representation. There is not family that enjoys being tagged or associated with negativity. When the parents must have set an operational standard of the family, it behoves o the children to and uphold and protect it.
It behoves on them to protect the image of the family by the character they exhibit within the home, in the society and in their relationship with other people. The children are expected to be loving, obedient, respectful and Godly. In fact, the children of the family are actually the benchmark for ascertaining the goodness of a family. This is a whole lot of abstract responsibility for the children.
Children are often advised to “think home” while taking certain decisions or engaging in certain acts. The “think home” phrase there is simply suggesting that the image or reputation of the family should be considered by children in their every decision. Remember that in the introduction, we pointed out that the roles of family members in the family cannot perfect the family or be perfected in isolation.
Each and every member of the family is required to perform those roles which are culturally, socially, morally, religiously or otherwise assigned to them. Therefore this duty to protect and uphold the family’s image is in fact almost impossible to be performed by the parents in a situation where the children are carefree about it. And also, its non-performance renders the family manifestly imperfect.
4. Duty to live up to Expectation:
This duty strikes with the duty to protect and uphold the family image because when children live up to expectation, they by so doing uphold the image of the family. Under this head, the children are expected to deliver. They are expected to grow in certain aspects of life.
In our society for instance, a child is not to be heard rejecting to go for a basic formal education whereas there is a willing sponsor which is always the parents. And upon such a willing sponsor, the children are expected to have a good representation in school. They have the role to acquire good grades. By so doing, they are living up to the expectation. Children who do not live up to the reasonable expectation of a growing child can be said to be underperforming. This would of course not be a thing the family would be proud of.
Also under this head, children serve as a motivation to their parents’ hard work. Motivation is simply a drive which triggers and sustains one’s willingness to perform an act or function. It is an undisputable responsibility of the parents to carter for the children. When there are children in the family, their presence or their anticipated existence adds some extra motivation to the economic consciousness of the parents. This role is better manifested when the children are performing up to the expected standard.
5. Parents’ Investment:
Children are their parents’ investment. Investment involves spending money, time and energy on something usually for future benefit. Yes, it is the role of the parents to make way for their children, lead them through, empower them and invest on their career and future.
On the other hand, it is the role of the children to become an investment unto their parents. Becoming an investment here suggests that they undertake to be beneficial, concomitant to the money expended on their developing and future. Children are demanded to be productive, and as they become productive eventually, it is their role and responsibility to look after their parents after on and at old age. This role is a very important one.
6. Role of sustaining the Family Lineage
In some families where there is only one male child, the male child is most times pressured to get married earlier. Some families go as far as arranging marriage for the only male child.
In some families where there is no male child at all, adoption can be made for the purpose of continuing the family lineage. In some cultures, where there is no male child in a family, a female child may be made to bear children for the family in her father’s house. This instances illustrates the role of lineage continuation which is bestowed on the children in a family.
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7. Duty to Learn
This is another important role of children in the family. Children are demanded to keep learning as they grow. They are to be teachable and open to corrections.
Children are expected to be keen to learning from their enrolled academic institution, and also learn the strategies of life adaptation; learn certain soft and hard skills especially those which can be acquired from within the family.
Edeh Samuel Chukwuemeka ACMC, is a Law Student and a Certified Mediator/Conciliator in Nigeria. He is also a Developer with knowledge in HTML, CSS, JS, PHP and React Native. Samuel is bent on changing the legal profession by building Web and Mobile Apps that will make legal research a lot easier.