Family Dynamics

Preferred communication style

In my family, we prefer the clear and direct form of communication. When the message is plainly stated directly to the person for whom it is intended, communication becomes easy. In case, the person intended to receive the message is not clearly identified, it becomes problematic. The generalization of any message ends up creating disrupts in the family in that we all assume the message was meant to the other person. Such misunderstandings as simple as they may look are never encouraged in our family.

Power form in my Family

In my family, the power structure is normative. Based on our cultural values, my father is the dominant figure.  My mother upholds the role when my father is not present though she is a bit lenient. This dominant perspective usually creates a lot of disrupts in the family in that my father tries to impose all decisions on us. He never lets us make some of the simple decisions that affect our life as his children. My mother, on the other hand, gives room for negotiations when she has upheld the dominant role. The culture perceives that the man is the head, and the woman takes over the role when the man is not present. Everyone else is bound to follow what the dominant figure dictates.

Guidelines for effective decision-making

To avoid conflicts in a family, decision-making should be very effective. For effective decision-making, there should be open communication. Any communication should be open and direct. In addition, feedback should also be open and direct.  Again, giving room for negotiations and adjustments generates alternatives and allows people to think in terms of needs rather than a solution. A decision is not made necessarily to generate a solution but sometimes to create a need. All family members should be allowed to self-express themselves without the fear of creating disrupts. In my family, these guidelines are partially adhered. The man as the sole provider is dominant and makes most of the decisions as culture dictates. The room for negotiations and adjustments is minimal.

Decision making structure in my family

The decision-making structure in my family is closely tied to the power structure. My father as the dominant figure, with minimal consultation with my mother, makes all economic decisions. For decisions that directly affect a particular person, the father relays the decision he has made for negotiations and adjustments though the adjustment is not always guaranteed.  However, if a decision affects the whole family, consultations are made depending with the type of decision. For example if we are deciding where to go for a holiday, my father appoints different destinations and leaves us to choose the one we want. Communication is however very direct and open. Once a decision is made, you either take it or leave it. Any required feedback is openly communicated. Generally, my father rigidly holds the power to make and change any decision.

Assessing my family strengths

  • Does the form of decision making in the family disrupt the family, promote conflict or facilitate the well-being of the family?
  • Who is the formally designated leader in the family and under which circumstances does anyone else takeover?
  • To what extent is communication open and direct in the family?
  • Are the guidelines for effective decision-making followed in the family?

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