Importance of Family Closeness

Matthew - Lincoln, Illinois
Entered on October 7, 2008
Age Group: 18 - 30
Themes: family

How close is your family? Do they only see each other once a year or so? Or do they like to do almost everything together, like my family? Well, actually my dad’s side of my family. They get together every weekend they’re so close. My mom’s side of the family really only sees each other for holidays and birthdays. After 18 years of living with both families I can see a difference. My dad’s side of the family, I think, has more fun together. I believe that close families have better overall relationships with each other than families who don’t see each other very often.

I’ve noticed that when my dad’s side of the family gets together, we are always laughing and joking and having a good time. Take the last time I was at my grandparent’s house. The second we walked inside we could already hear the laughs from the living room. We went into the room and see everyone sitting and still laughing. Before we have a chance to ask what is so funny, my grandpa says to us “Well, it’s about time you got here.” We all look at each other in silence for about five seconds, before we all start busting up laughing. This is what it is always like with my dad’s side of the family.

Now my mom’s side of the family is close, but not near as close as my dad’s side. There is always that air of seriousness around when I’m with them. They do joke with each other, but when it gets to a certain point the laughs just kind of stop. Plus it is always tense at holidays. Like Thanksgiving, my grandma always makes the best spread of food. But getting to the feast is the hardest part. My mom and grandma are bickering about the food. My uncle and grandpa usually argue about something that has little relevance. Mean while our two dogs are walking under everyone’s feet, making matters worse. This kind of stuff happens whenever we get together and it gets old really fast.

Recently I found out how my dad’s side of the family deals with problems. It was my sister’s birthday party and the whole family was there. My one uncle was absent, which was usual for him. The day went like any other party; everyone had fun and laughed a lot. Eventually, everyone goes home. It was then that my dad told me my aunt was getting a divorce and that was why my uncle wasn’t there. This was when I realized how strong our family bond was.

I have found that close families have a strong bond that is difficult to shake. I wish that my mom’s side of the family could be like my dad’s. I’ve learned that in the future, when I have a family of my own, I want to have the same closeness that my dad’s side of the family has.