Is Nuclear Family Better Than Joint Family?
From a couple’s perspective
I have had the opportunity to live in both Nuclear and Joint family, and if this question is put up before me, I would really don’t know what to choose.
In most cases, for a girl to be specific, she either moves to a nuclear family after marriage, or if she has been living in a joint family, she may consider moving in to a joint family, even after marriage. For me, the case was the complete opposite. I used to stay in a nuclear family, and after marriage, I moved in to a joint family.
So, choosing one over the other would truly be wrong, as both the type of family has some pros and cons. It’s like choosing between sugar and salt. Each has its own unique flavour which cannot be compared or substituted.
Now, when I look back, I can surely say what each is like.
During my growing up years, I have always watched my parents very open with each other, and us. We would discuss everything and anything possible in the world, in the presence of each other. We would be least bothered about what we wear when we were at home, or how we sat and our house could be as messy as it may be. Our parents would hold hands in our presence and not shy away to display their love for each other. Whenever we would expect any guest, it was then that we got into a parade to make the house and ourselves presentable.
While, after I got married, staying in a joint family brought forward it’s own limitations. I had to be presentable every-time and would have to sit properly, with my legs down in front of my in-laws, in order to show them respect. It was considered indecent if I displayed love towards my husband in the presence of the elders, in any form, be it as simple a gesture as holding hands. I couldn’t throw things around the house and had to limit my things to my room. I was even expected to keep my room presentable every-time. Everything I did, I had to keep the family in mind, and act accordingly.
By now, you must be thinking why is it difficult for me to choose, as it clearly shows nuclear family to be more liveable. But that is not the case. Till now we have only talked about the pros of a nuclear family. But, it has a long list of cons as well, just like a joint family.
In a nuclear family, it’s just the two of us, i.e. the husband and the wife. The children come in, at a later stage. With only two person in a house, we tend to feel very lonely, as we don’t have anyone else to talk to, and how much can we talk among ourselves. As the management of the house is entirely on us, when we get tired, even a small act can fire us up and we end up exploding at the other. What you cook is what you eat. You cannot expect, that on days when you return late and tired from office, to get prepared food. We need to cook our own food or eat out (which is not a very feasible solution for a everyday routine). In the absence of the other, we are left all alone.
In these cases, having a joint family is the best thing that can happen to us. We are never alone, there will always be someone or the other. We have people to care for us. As the number of helping hands increase, managing the house seems less tiresome and can even be enjoyable at times. When we get late at work, we may expect food cooked and kept for us. On a funny note, having a dine out becomes more enjoyable as you have several dishes to try from.
In a nuclear family, when the wife is expecting, it becomes very difficult for the husband to handle everything on his own. It takes a toll on him. And once she delivers the baby, she needs to stay at home and take care of the baby all by herself, while the husband earns to fund for the increase in expense.
On the other hand, in a joint family, there are others to help the husband at this stage of life. Once the baby is delivered, there are more people to take care of it, thus giving some rest to the mother. She and the child are well cared after. As the child grows, she has the option to start working again, knowing that she has a family to take care of her child in her absence. The entire process of motherhood becomes less tiring and more fun.
So, let life decide which type of family is best for us. We should just accept it and live to the fullest. Life is best the way it is.