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Personal Definitions of Family

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  1. Personal Definitions of Family 1a

  2. our personal beliefs about how families should be structured and behave. 1b

  3. Professional Definition of Family 2a

  4. definitions of “family” that are provided by professional organizations. Professional definitions of family may not reflect legal definitions. 2b

  5. Legal Definition of Family 3a

  6. according to the U.S. Census Bureau, “a family is a group of two people or more (one of whom is the householder) related by birth, marriage, or adoption and residing together.” This definition is sometimes too narrow to encompass all the different family arrangements encountered by teachers. 3b

  7. Traditional Family 4a

  8. the family structure that is considered the norm in society at any given point in time. 4b

  9. Nuclear Family 5a

  10. a traditional family consisting of a husband and wife and their children. 5b

  11. Extended Family 6a

  12. the nuclear family as well as immediate relatives such as grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins. 6b

  13. Fictive or Affiliated Kin 7a

  14. individuals with no biological or legal relationship to a family but who are nevertheless viewed as part of the family and are given family responsibilities. Fictive kin can include neighbors who care for children, Godparents, youth workers, and teachers. 7b

  15. Normed Families 8a

  16. families that previously were viewed as atypical but are now considered a part of “normal” American society. Normed families include single-parent families, stepfamilies, and adoptive families. 8b

  17. Vulnerable Families 9a

  18. families who, because of their life circumstances, experience financial, emotional, and physical stress that can impair their functioning and well-being. 9b

  19. Homeless Families 10a

  20. families that lack permanent housing. 10b

  21. Working-Poor Families 11a

  22. families whose incomes remain below the poverty threshold despite family members’ full-time employment. 11b

  23. Emerging Families 12a

  24. family arrangements that are becoming more visible and gaining recognition in American society. 12b

  25. Families of Choice 13a

  26. also known as network or friendship families, families of choice are formed when individuals who are not related join together to provide each other with emotional and / or financial support. 13b

  27. Gay and Lesbian Families 14a

  28. same-sex partners with or without children. 14b

  29. Same-Sex Marriage 15a

  30. recognized in a few states as the legal union between gay and lesbian partners. No state is required to recognize same-sex marriages, according to the U.S. Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). 15b

  31. Serial Monogamy 16a

  32. describes the series of monogamous relationships that individuals may experience over their lifetime. 16b

  33. Multiple Partner Fertility 17a

  34. refers to adults who have children with more than one partner. Multiple partner fertility may accompany serial monogamy. 17b

  35. Covenant Marriages 18a

  36. couples voluntarily enter into covenant marriages with the understanding that their state will grant a divorce only in a limited number of situations. Pre-marriage counseling also is often mandated as part of a covenant marriage. 18b

  37. Household 19a

  38. everyone who occupies a housing unit. 19b

  39. Family Household 20a

  40. a type of household in which at least one individual is related to the householder by birth, marriage, or adoption. 20b

  41. Nonfamily Household 21a

  42. a type of household in which a householder lives alone or with nonrelatives only. 21b

  43. Parent 22a

  44. from a legal perspective, a biological or adoptive adult. This definition stands in contrast to a professional definition of parenthood. 22b

  45. Biological Parents 23a

  46. parents who are genetically related to a child. 23b

  47. Extended Parents 24a

  48. relatives of a nuclear family who assume parenting responsibilities. 24b

  49. Sociological Parents 25a

  50. parents who assume the mother or father role even though they are not biologically related to a child. Examples include foster parents, adoptive parents, and stepparents. 25b