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Are multi-generational households beneficial?

kir 2012/07/23 13:43:26
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In America, as in many modern western nations, chances are, as soon
as you turn a certain age, generally 18 in America, you leave home, go
off to college, and start your own family leaving your old one behind.
Sure you may visit once in a while, but you are now part of a separate
family. This contrasts greatly
with multi-generational families of many traditional societies. Often as
many as three generations in traditional societies will live together.

This
was true during the pre-industrial period in the United States as well
to a large extent; if you ever go into some of the really old houses in
this country, you'll find that while they have small rooms, there are a
large number of these rooms. That is because grandparents, parents, and
children would often live in the same house.

Read more here: http://politicoid.blogspot.com/2012/07/an-analysis-of-multi-g...

Read More: http://politicoid.blogspot.com/2012/07/an-analysis...

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Top Opinion

  • KarenInKenoshaWisconsin 2012/07/23 23:08:30
    Undecided
    KarenInKenoshaWisconsin
    +5
    It depends on whether the family is functional or dysfunctional and many situational factors but generally, it's beneficial because a multi-generational family unit can often do more for each person involved than a single or two generation household can.

    For instance, a three generation household can a be a benefit to older family members as well as enable younger family members to go to work and or college and benefit from the wisdom of older members. Older members may benefit from being around younger family members in a variety of ways. It's a much more enriched family life in many but not all cases.

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  • La 2012/08/09 03:31:10
    Multi-generational households are beneficial because
    La
    +1
    It's good to stay living with your parents for a while. It allows you to save money while you've started working (not having to pay rent, or not much rent) and it brings some extra money to your parents who I'm sure would rather you stay there than rent your room out to a stranger.
  • boss hawg 2012/08/01 01:46:45
    Multi-generational households are beneficial because
    boss hawg
    +3
    got some babysitters in the house. lol
  • kitkat42 2012/07/31 00:06:39
    Multi-generational households are beneficial because
    kitkat42
    +2
    I'm living in one now. It is beneficial in this economy. We all contribute so we can live in a better place. As long as there's enough space for everyone, it can work very well.
  • Kalayaan 001 2012/07/30 22:00:10 (edited)
    Multi-generational households are beneficial because
    Kalayaan 001
    +3
    This setting not only allows for greater maximization of the household's resources, it also allows form mutual learning amongst the members of different age groups.
  • J 2012/07/30 20:59:00
    Multi-generational households are beneficial because
    J
    +3
    Wisdom (which comes with living) can be shared, and youth can be retained.
    Someone asked me when my granddaughter was born, if being a grandmother made me feel old. I told them, honestly, I haven't felt this young in years.
  • frank 2012/07/30 20:52:21
    Multi-generational households are beneficial because
    frank
    +3
    With the economy the way it is and so many people out of work for sooo long, there moving back in with their parents.
  • burningsnowman 2012/07/26 07:23:38
    Undecided
    burningsnowman
    +1
    In theory they can be but the reasons why they're exploding are obviously anything but. Also american society just isn't mature or pragmatic enough to accept that sort of lifestyle yet by and large. I mean come on, we have people in THIS economy still putting down 18 year olds for being "moochers" for living with mom and dad even when they're paying rent + ridiculous student loans + who knows what else.
  • kir burning... 2012/07/26 11:49:55
    kir
    Mature enough? It's the lifestyle we had when this nation started.
  • burning... kir 2012/07/27 08:36:03 (edited)
    burningsnowman
    +1
    America is nothing like what it was then. Even a leftist historian like Morris Berman is objective enough to recognize that the country was probably at its best during the frontier years and has been declining ever since. This country isn't even much like it was pre-1960s when you get down to it. Have you ever seen Century of the Self? Pretty much nails what killed this country.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?...
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?...
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?...

    (Oh and before someone takes this out of context and says I'm being racist OBVIOUSLY I'm not implying jim crow or wiping out natives was OK I'm just saying the US was more or less on the ascent then and less dysfunctional in a lot of ways.)
  • Moonage 2012/07/24 12:56:24
    Multi-generational households are beneficial because
    Moonage
    +4
    What we are experiencing in this country is a complete breakdown of understanding our varying heritages. Kids fill that void with meaningless influences like rappers and other people completely unable to set a standard that will make kids' lives fuller and more complete. If kids had a more secure knowledge of what was expected from them, and learn to care for others at an earlier age, you wouldn't see a lot of the mindless violence towards others that we deal with now.

    Great question. There aren't a lot of those on here.
  • kir Moonage 2012/07/24 13:06:20
    kir
    +1
    Thanks for your comment, and thanks for your compliment on the question.

    It's a shame I've only managed to get 29 votes, even though I have over 1,000 "friends".
  • Moonage kir 2012/07/24 13:19:13
    Moonage
    I don't worry about the numbers. Good questions are in their own special level.
  • kir Moonage 2012/07/24 13:22:48
    kir
    True, but you need a certain number of votes before you can start looking at the demographics and I'm quite curious about the demographics for each answer to my questions.
  • Altering_Minds. 2012/07/24 05:34:20
    Multi-generational households are beneficial because
    Altering_Minds.
    they save new houses for people without them and are new....
  • rand 2012/07/24 03:49:13
    Undecided
    rand
    +1
    It depends almost entirely on the family. With the Waltons it worked. In the Adam's family, not so much.
  • dreamwriter12 ✲the libraria... 2012/07/24 02:37:11
    Undecided
    dreamwriter12 ✲the librarian of ρнaεt✲ in grammar I trust
    +1
    Depends on how well one functions in such a place. If you're used to it, it could be very beneficial. However, to someone who isn't used to it and/or prefers privacy, it might be very stressful and difficult to live in and thrive.
  • kir dreamwr... 2012/07/24 02:39:55
    kir
    +1
    Well that's a problem with the formation of the rugged individualist; we have trouble functioning in a family unit.
  • dreamwr... kir 2012/07/25 03:21:21
    dreamwriter12 ✲the librarian of ρнaεt✲ in grammar I trust
    That is true in some cases. But there is a difference between immediate family and extended family too. I get along great with both, but personally, having to live with my extended family would drive me nuts after some time. lol.
  • kir dreamwr... 2012/07/25 03:42:02
    kir
    +1
    Obviously a house would have to be set up so that grand parents, parents, and children would have at least some space to themselves, but honestly if people grow up in an environment where all three of those generations live close, I think people would be alright. It's those who did not grow up that way that would have trouble adapting.
  • dreamwr... kir 2012/07/26 14:56:11
    dreamwriter12 ✲the librarian of ρнaεt✲ in grammar I trust
    Fair enough. I see your point.
  • kfallslady 2012/07/24 02:11:06
    Multi-generational households are beneficial because
    kfallslady
    +2
    It's getting tougher to make a living so familys are choosing to live together to make ends meet
  • LesWaggoner BN 1 2012/07/24 02:06:47
    Multi-generational households are beneficial because
    LesWaggoner BN 1
    +3
    Every generation contributes to the family. In the U.S. the oldest generation usually has some income even if it is only a Social Security check each month. As members of a multi-generational household we, as the oldest generation, help to educate our great-grandchildren.
    The two generations in the middle, those who are not still involved in their education, are our primary financial providers.
    It works well for us.
  • kir 2012/07/24 01:21:19
    Multi-generational households are beneficial because
    kir
    +2
    They allow for a support structure that doesn't exist in our current fragmented family structure.
  • Paul 2012/07/24 00:42:02
    Multi-generational households are not beneficial because
    Paul
    +1
    I'm sure it works and might be good for some, but nothing I would encouragr. The situations I've witnessed have more to do with cult like religous practice that I cannot agree with.
  • kir Paul 2012/07/24 00:58:32
    kir
    You've seen a small fraction of multi-generational households.
  • Mel 2012/07/24 00:07:17
    Undecided
    Mel
    +2
    not always. There are some from the older generations who simply will not embrace current changes in societe.
  • kir Mel 2012/07/24 00:08:22
    kir
    +1
    Well changes occur with time of course. However I think in general, as mentioned in the post, there are more than enough benefits to outweigh the negatives.
  • Mel kir 2012/07/24 00:11:25
    Mel
    Still, many older people find themselves surrounded by societe changes and wish for the "Good old days" And I would not want someone like that influencing any children I have.
  • kir Mel 2012/07/24 00:16:39
    kir
    You don't want your parents influencing your children? That's interesting.
  • Mel kir 2012/07/24 00:38:59
    Mel
    Societe has changed and advice I would want for my children must reflect the reality of the current time, sot some yesteryears reality of the past.
  • KarenInKenoshaWisconsin 2012/07/23 23:08:30
    Undecided
    KarenInKenoshaWisconsin
    +5
    It depends on whether the family is functional or dysfunctional and many situational factors but generally, it's beneficial because a multi-generational family unit can often do more for each person involved than a single or two generation household can.

    For instance, a three generation household can a be a benefit to older family members as well as enable younger family members to go to work and or college and benefit from the wisdom of older members. Older members may benefit from being around younger family members in a variety of ways. It's a much more enriched family life in many but not all cases.
  • Chaya2010 2012/07/23 20:53:32
    Multi-generational households are beneficial because
    Chaya2010
    +3
    I think the positive would outweigh the negative.
  • Lord Emperor of Dune 2012/07/23 17:27:27
    Multi-generational households are beneficial because
    Lord Emperor of Dune
    +3
    Not only does it save money and pool resources, but it gives young ones the opportunity to get to know family members they may not have. I wouldn't have known my Nana at all probably if we hadn't lived in the same home for a large part of my childhood. Boon!
  • KingdomNow 2012/07/23 16:24:06
    Multi-generational households are not beneficial because
    KingdomNow
    +1
    It encourages underachievement. I know people who have never moved out from their parents' home and are in their 40s and 50s. I chide them about it because these people, who have their own jobs, spend what they earn on toys and entertainment.
    The youngest of my friends (actually a friend's son) living with his parents is 24, and his father told me that this geek prepared a Power Point presentation explaining how getting a job would interfere with his personal time -This dolt plays video games all day!
    I've yet to see any long-term benefit of generational dependency.

    The reverse of independent living is a clear example of the lower standard of living as seen in other countries.
  • kir KingdomNow 2012/07/23 19:02:10
    kir
    +4
    Except this is a modern notion; in most cultures and for most of human history, it was common for people to live in large families. To assume that because you have not left your family and gotten your own place is an underacheivement is a cultural bias.

    You are assuming that mult-generational households produce people that do not work, but in fact it is generally the parents that work while the grand parents are at home taking care of the children in multi-generational families.
  • KingdomNow kir 2012/07/23 20:51:13
    KingdomNow
    +1
    Actually, no, in ancient times daughters were expected to leave the homes of their parents to live with their husbands on their own land. The whole Migration Era, such as the Vikings and Saxons was all about people leaving home to strike out on their own.
    Multi-generational dwellings were a sign of poverty in most Western countries.

    In Japan, young adults often leave home to work and never return because that is a clear sign of failure. I've seen entire villages made up of only retirees waiting to die, whose children won't even contact them.

    I grew up in a time when people had large families because children were cheap labor on the plantations and free labor around the house. Nowadays the child labor laws make for millions of idle brats whose only concern is entertainment.
  • Marissa... KingdomNow 2012/07/23 20:42:20 (edited)
    Marissa Garreffa
    +3
    I live in a multi-generational household and it is DEFIANTLY NOT like what you said. Firstly, My dad skip out on the mother and rarely pay child support so she had to raise me on her own. Secondly, My grandmother needs help around the house because she can't do all the chores anymore. Thirdly, I have not moved out not just for the above reason but also I can't find a job that pays enough of an house/apartment and school. Perhaps you should realize that maybe just maybe that there is more reasons to multi-generational households then you friends lazy ass who doesn't want to find a job!
  • Dwight PWCM 2012/07/23 16:07:28
    Multi-generational households are beneficial because
    Dwight PWCM
    +3
    My mom's dad lived with us the last ten years of his life. My dad's mom lived with dad's sister the last twenty of hers.

    We learned a lot from them, family history as well as home and work skills they passed on to us.
  • TheTailor 2012/07/23 15:47:49
    Undecided
    TheTailor
    +3
    Multi generational homes are great if you don't have a lot of money to spend or if you are trying to save money.
  • Marianne 2012/07/23 15:13:42
    Undecided
    Marianne
    +3
    Multi-generational households can be ideal, provided that the family is open-minded, solidly united, and that they can live together and evolve in harmony.
    Unfortunately, stress, poverty, too much authority or abuse and a precarious situation can make cohabitation problematic, and too little space for each one is uneasy.

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