Hudaibia Iftikhar

PESHAWAR: Joint families are the extensions of nuclear families where parents, grandparents, children, uncles, and aunts live under one roof through generations. The joint family system has undoubtedly benefited the families with the needs of households even if some of its members are unemployed, sick and unable to earn their livelihood.

I am living in a joint family system, spend a lot of time sitting in a living room and have a propensity to eat together, and have a habit to share things with each other. We have a joint relationship of life and respect in our family. We are a total of 15 family members including my uncle, aunt, their five daughters, and my own parents and siblings. Being the youngest among my siblings, I used to do less homely tasks and devote a great deal of time to my blogging and other social activities though I was distracted sometimes and can’t give full focus to my work due to a ton of clamor at home.

We often sacrifice our needs for our other family members as the responsibility of all family members is on my father’s shoulders as my uncle is unable to earn for his children. My father loves my uncle’s children more than us as he doesn’t want them to feel inferior. He also expects the same from my brother to treat them as his own sisters and not let them realize that they don’t have their own brother. In today’s world where everyone has their own issues and wants the love and affection of parents, in such a situation it is not easy to sacrifice your happiness for others.

Living in a joint family means adjusting with all uncles, aunts, and cousins, it does not only mean a group of people living together but it means that these people are tied with a blood relation and choose to live in a single house for many reasons. Though every coin has two sides, if the joint family setup benefited us then its disadvantages on the other side cannot be ignored.

One can realize the importance of a joint family system only when they face troubles and search for help, at that time the first silent approaching steps will be of your family members. When we grow together, learn together, battle and make-up, continue on in their lives, yet eventually, when you need somebody then you know that your kin and family will be there for you.

In a joint family, the value system becomes a central part. Elders follow certain principles and children may naturally inherit the value system. Children learn the lessons of ethics and mortality under the guidance of elders and they ensure that the family’s values should not be compromised.

One of the benefits while living in a joint family is that the children not only get love and affection from their parents but the other family members also support them in all aspects of life.

While observing the disadvantages of the joint family system we often find out that the most common thing we compromise while living in a joint family system is privacy. One cannot take their decisions but everyone considers it necessary to interfere in your personal matters. Even a small decision has to go through and get a green signal by every member of the family and this is one of the reasons that the unmarried girls think multiple times before marriage to live in a joint family because women face a lot of limitations and there is less freedom for them while living in a joint family. A very small mistake may invite callous taunts and ridicule.

Living together in a joint family is a difficult task for modern women. It is not easy to forfeit for other people, to deal with relatives, make food for the entire family and work like servants the whole day, yet it is also true that the happiness is incomplete without your family members, if you take care of your family today, there will be many individuals behind you during your difficult time tomorrow.

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