2 key aspects of Family Life Cycle theory • in order to progress to the next stage, you must meet the requirements and responsibilities of the stage before • responsibilities that are attached to each level. Each stage has specific goals that are supposed to be met, but individuals must also spend time at each level preparing for the next level • example, new couples should be preparing to be a parent. This may involve taking a parenting course or learning about phases of child development.
Contemporary families may not follow this predictable pattern: the timing and sequence of significant life events varies with the complex arrangements of many families today. • William Goode explains that families change in response to society’s demands: • employment requirements for geographic mobility, increasing • role expectations for women at home and in the labour force • a need for families to absorb care and support for their elderly members • accommodating changes due to divorce and separation. • These demands result in family development patterns that are distinctly divergent from the family life cycle of the traditional nuclear family
Parenting is the most important job you will ever have (if you decide to have them) • It can be most rewarding but at the same time the most challenging job • Very important to weigh all of the factors carefully before coming to a decision about becoming parents • its a life long commitment – even after they leave the home parents continue to provide emotional and sometimes financial support Parent Readiness
Making childbearing decisions is a complicated procedure • While many parents do not make any conscious decisions to have children, those who do may consider some of the following criteria: • desire to have children • background factors • economic costs • opportunities for new roles. Decisions. Decisions! Decisions?
Childbearing is the result of choices that have been made • In some cases it is a well thought out, planned decision...other times the pregnancy is unplanned • Butin all cases it is the result of choices • Mature couples, with adequate resources and education, who make a deliberate choice to enter parenthood have greater satisfaction and rewarding experiences.
Parenting the most difficult job you will ever take on. The challenges are ones that you must carefully consider before taking on this role. • Complete the following quiz to determine your readiness for parenting. Select only one answer per question.
How old are you? • 15 – 20 years of age • 21 – 25 years of age • 25 – 35 years of age • over 35 years
How many of the following habits do you have? • Smoking • Drinking more than 1 alcoholic beverage per day • Using illegal drugs • Using prescription drugs in a manner in which they weren’t prescribed • I have 3 of these habits. • I have 2 of these habits. • 1 have 1 of these habits. • I have none of these habits.
How long have you been at your current job? • I am not currently employed. • Less than 1 year • 1 to 2 years • More than 2 years
How long have you been in a serious committed relationship with your partner? • Less than 6 months • 6 to 11 months • 1 to 3 years • more than 3 years • I am not currently in a relationship.
Have you read books or watched videos on parenting and child care? • Yes • No
Have you taken a parenting course? • Yes • No
On average, how often do you communicate with your family (parents, siblings, extended family)? • Less than once a month • 1 - 2 times a month • Once a week • 2 – 3 times a week • Almost daily
Which of the following is most important to you? • Paying off debts • Spending time with friends • Spending time with my partner • My school work/job • Participating in recreational activities and sports • Spending time with my family
What is your yearly income? • Less than $10,000 • $10,000 to $24,999 • $25,000 to $50,000 • More than $50,000
What is your Score? Tally up your answers and record your final score. • a) 0 b) 1 c) 3 d) 1 • a) 0 b) 0 c) 0 d) 3 • a) 0 b) 1 c) 2 d) 3 • a) 0 b) 1 c) 2 d) 3 e) 0 • a) 2 b) 0 • a) 2 b) 0 • a) 3 b) 0 • a) 0 b) 1 c) 2 d) 3 e) 3 • a) 1 b) 0 c) 2 d) 1 e) 0 f) 3 • a) 0 b) 1 c) 2 d) 3 TOTAL SCORE: ___________
Your Results Use your final score from the quiz to analyze your results. • 24 to 28 points – From the results of this quiz it appears that you are ready to enter the world of parenting. You have considered all of the factors that determine parent readiness and your life circumstances appear to be in place. You are ready in many ways to parent; you are mentally and physically mature, financially stable and have your future mapped out. It appears that you have a stable relationship with your partner and good family support.
18 to 23 points – From the results of this quiz it appears that you are not quite ready to parent. You seem to have some knowledge of parenting and how to best prepare for it but right now your life circumstances don’t seem in place. More time and experiences with children may help you to get to the right place and time in your life. • Under 18 points – From the results of this quiz it appears that this is not the time for you to consider the role of parent. Your priorities at this time focus more on your personal growth. You may decide later in your life to have a child when things are more stable or you may choose to remain childless.
If people view parenting as a choice they are more likely to make a thoughtful decision about whether, when, and how to parent. • You are more likely to succeed if you have carefully considered and chosen this role. • Parents who are ready are more likely to raise a healthy and happy child. Childbearing Decision Models
To make your best choices: • consider all options; • weigh the advantages, disadvantages, and consequences of your actions; • consider the values, circumstances, and pressures that influence your choices.
1) The Decision Web • A decision web allows you to graphically illustrate a decision, the factors to be considered, and their consequences. 2) The Five-Step Decision Making Model • A second method to making informed decisions is the five-step decision making model. In this case you can weigh two or more options and predict what will happen as a result. 2 methods to make effective, informed decisions
The problem has been defined (in the middle of the web) and the factors to be considered extend from the problem. • Now further considerations/ consequences need to be considered and added to the web. Decision Web
A second method to making informed decisions is the five-step decision making model. • In this case you can weigh two or more options and predict what will happen as a result. Step 1: • Define the problem. Example • Are we ready to parent? Five-Step Decision Making Model
Step 2: • Identify the alternatives available. Example • 1. Yes we are ready to parent now; 2. No we are not ready yet;3. No we choose not to become parents. Five-Step Decision Making Model
Step 3: • Evaluate the alternatives. Consider the consequences of your actions. Consider your values, priorities, interests, expectations, and goals. Example • We value family and children, we want to share our life with another person. • We have discussed how parenting will impact our life at this time. • We are ready to give up sleeping in on the weekend and going out every Friday and Saturday night. • We are both healthy and take care of ourselves. • We have stable jobs and have a decent amount of money saved. • We live in a one-bedroom apartment right now. • Our parents live more than three hours away though and won’t be available to help us often. Five-Step Decision Making Model
Step 4: • Choose the best solution and create a plan of action. Example • Solution: We have decided to have a baby now. Plan of Action: We will begin to look for a bigger place to live and we need to make an appointment with our family doctor for a check-up. Five-Step Decision Making Model
Step 5: • Evaluate your decision. Example • In this case we will need to wait and see what happens. We will assume that since the decision was well thought out and planned that the couple has made a good decision. Five-Step Decision Making Model
What do you think is the best decision for Alexis and Gavin? • Apply either the decision web or the five-step decision making model Consider the following case study...
Alexis is 16 years old. She has been dating Gavin for the past nine months. Gavin graduated from high school last year and is working full-time at a car dealership in the shop. Alexis is in grade 11. She has plans to attend college to become a medical technician. She has just found out that she is two months pregnant. Gavin has told his parents but Alexis has not. Gavin’s parents were angry at first but are willing to help out. Alexis is terrified to tell her parents. They will be so disappointed.