The existence of the joint family system has been prevalent in the Indian culture for a long time.
Yet the debate of whether it is good or not continues.
One of the foremost advantage of a joint family is related to parenting, For example; when working parents can leave their child with the in-laws instead of a maid, the sense of safety is much more.
Here are the other positive lessons that one can learn from the system of joint families.
Solution to Arguments
With the frequency of disagreements between couples rising, and ego often coming into play, the presence of elders in the family does help.
The advice and mature thoughts that they give, many a times, helps to put an end to squabbles and find amicable solutions to issues.
That’s where this system scores over the nuclear family on the debate on the joint family.
Sharing of Expenses
With the rising cost of living, one of the advantages of a nuclear family vs joint family lies in the sharing of expenses.
While it is true that there are families where the inflow of finances rests on the shoulders of only one working member, most of the times the expenses get shared between the father and the son, two brothers etc.
The grandfather of one of my child’s friend tells me very honestly, ‘I am thankful that both my sons contribute to the household expenses. I would not have been able to manage on my own.’
Sharing of House Work
Between nuclear family vs joint family, the former means no option but to do all the work yourself, whereas the presence of other family members, as in a joint family system, helps in sharing of the workload.
For example; if one takes up the work of cooking one day, another can do the work of cleaning up. My sister-in-law tells me, ‘It’s wonderful to be living together because I never have to worry about who will cook when I am rushing to fetch my kids from school.’
Creation of a Learning Environment
One of the advantages of a joint family system most definitely lies in the creation of a learning environment for everyone. Be that with respect to parenting, in the kitchen, or even about the world’s happenings over an evening cup of tea.
There are surely moments when there is a collision of ideas and opinions, but if every member of the family can live with an open mind, then there is a lot one can discover from the others.
Security for Senior Citizens
Robberies and murders of senior citizens are abounding in today’s world. And most of the times it is when they are living alone. However, for those who stay together, the level of security is much more.
The sense of security also comes into play in the case of sudden health emergencies that are associated with an ageing family member. This is where the latter scores in the discussion of nuclear family versus joint family.
A seventy year old lady from my society complex says, ‘When I know that my son and daughter in law are sleeping in the other room, I feel more confident of myself.’