This has always been a very sensitive issue to many. Which one is more important: the family you are born into or the one you build for yourself from scratch?
I was asked to talk about this many times before, so I will finally express my opinion on the subject. I will start by saying that I think the most important person in your life must be yourself and that in order to commit to any type of relationship you need to have a little dose of selfishness. To explain better, let’s say that if you are not concerned about your health for example, you will end up hurting the people you love most, so you need to be a little self centered in a positive way. Now, to dig deeper into the subject. We all have parents, husbands, children, friends so close to us that we call brothers or sisters and so on. The family you are born into is said to be there for you forever. No one can replace your mother or your father and your memories will always be precious when it comes to that part of your life. But, as any child, at some point you have to leave the nest (some later than they should, I must say 🙂 ) and start building your own family. A new born family doesn’t necessarily imply a husband, a wife and children in my book. A family can also be made out of two best friends that can’t live without each other and when they end up getting married and having children, their family just expands, not break and if they don’t, well, they’re still a family.
I was raised to believe in the family you make for yourself and respect the one that created you. I think it’s the best and healthiest way to look at things, but I must add that this doesn’t work for everyone and one can choose whatever is best for himself. I have married friends that split their holidays between their parents and in-laws and they are more than happy to do that, and some who detest the idea, but still do it because it’s the right way and they can’t afford to hurt their parents or in laws feelings. I have never liked compromises much, so ever since I have called another person my family, I stuck with that and by that only.
When I was just a kid, my grandfather used to say: “Family is your happy place, wherever you want it to be and with whomever you choose to share it.”; my mother often told me that family is what you make not what you are given and our godfather on our wedding day said: “No matter who tells you differently, you are a family and nothing and no one else matters most!”. Of course, before I had Ephia, whenever I would speak my mind about this topic people would look down in disapproval, but never spoke back. Now, as if having a child would have changed my ideas, they look straight into my eyes, grin and ask: “Now that you are a mother, would you like your daughter to never show up for Christmas dinner?”. My answer always shocks them. I must say I do not think I would mind her not showing up, because it would be more than stupid to ask her do something I never did. I would never impede her from coming, nor from staying away. I have said this a million times: children do not belong to us and they never will. They are a gift, a treasure that we must handle with care, protect and prepare as best we can and then finally let them go. They too will be in same position we are, and they too will want their freedom, their space, their own family. Our only job is to support their choices and understand their feelings.
Now, I am curious, which one is more important for you: the family you are born into or the one you build from scratch? Looking forward to read interesting arguments.