Dealing with Family Stress
Many social changes have contributed to a reshaping of American families. Some of these changes include high rates of teen pregnancy and unmarried parents; a high divorce rate, single-parent households, stepfamilies and dual-career families. Families need to be able to cope with these stressors and other demands they face.
Regardless of family type, there are times when all families need to be nurtured. Some ways that families can build healthy relationships and deal with stress are to:
Encourage open communication—not only through words but also through actions.
Strengthen the various relationships in the family—including the parent/child relationship, the husband/wife relationship and also relationships among the siblings.
Manage crises and conflict in a positive manner—by not taking things personally, accepting responsibility and learning to negotiate and compromise.
While the transformation of the American family can be challenging, learning new strategies for coping with change and stress can help reduce the negative impact on the family members. Strengthening the family requires the commitment and cooperation of all its members.
Source: University of Missouri Extension