Last Updated 31 Jan 2023

The Importance of Family in India

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India is the largest democracy and oldest civilization in the world. It is a land of extremely diverse cultures, languages, communities, education and family systems, customs and rituals. Family has always played an extremely vital role in the development of an individual. It is valued and honored differently in different countries and cultures.

It is impossible to talk about family Therapy development without family. In eastern societies, individual rather than Family is highly prized. Family provides a backbone for the development, support, Guidance of its members. Since, India is a land of paradox therefore there is no single Approach of viewing family system.

The difference in social and cultural Aspects and the unique nature of family interrelations makes it difficult to parallel With the West in the development of family therapy.

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The term family has been derived from the Latin word 'familiar' that is Referred to a group of people or individuals living together during their lifetime and Share social, biological and psychological relationships. Different People have different ideas about the concept and meaning of family.

So 'family' is Used to describe any group of people who care about each other and call themselves A family. Apart from parents and children family also involve whoever is important Such as grandparents, brothers and sisters, uncles and aunts, cousins, friends, and other professionals. The Indian families and its members share almost everything and comprised of variety of individuals. The structure of the family is based on the hierarchy of the gender preference.

The Indian families dwelling in rural and urban areas also face complex problems arising not only from urbanization and migration but also from poverty, natural disasters, crime and other modern day challenges.

These challenges put families and family system at risk leading to uncertain future, the growing phenomenon of economic growth and distribution of power and women in workforce generally lead to the gradual shift from traditional joint family system to nuclear family system. Some Indian studies report increased incidence of mental disorders in nuclear family. The institution of marriage holds a very important position in Indian society and is mostly arranged by the family

The consideration of principles, points and potential barrier may lead to wider acceptance of family therapy in mental health services India, as well as Descents of other nations. It is important to identify these factors with some common Threads and themes running through the culture at large in Indian population, there are a number of reasons why family therapy and counseling services are deemed of lesser significance and perceived as negative as other health-related issues and areas and issues in India.

The stigma, blame and social embarrassment, is Related to serious mental, relational and emotional illness and other common Problems, and those who seek such treatment are basically flawed. The mental Health clinics and hospitals are poorly run and economically not very well supported.

Therefore, many health problems have negative stereotype. People fail to Understand that stress is the most common cause rather than by other factors, such as Black magic or karma, as well as the bias among professionals. Thus, extremely low Level of awareness in the community and even healthcare providers cause hindrance In practicing family therapy.

Most fatal and common belief among Indians is that, counseling and therapies are only meant for those with severe mental disorders there are various kinds of issues that counselors and therapists that need to Take into account when dealing with Indian clients. Since, interdependence, Connection and shared responsibility are highly valued and deviations from norms are often considered as disorders of relationships.

In India the role of counselor or Going for family therapy is considered as least priority. It is expected that all the Problems would be provided with solutions and answers rather than involving the Process of problem solving and accepting the fact that the healing is based on their Attitude.

Another factor is experience and age as younger therapist and counselors are considered as inefficient especially in case of older and adults of middle age. Also, the younger educated people find it difficult to adopt the values and lifestyles of the traditional family and society. This creates an interrelation gap between the Two generations, and trouble in participating as a family during the therapy process

The marriage system in India is believed to be a union of two families and a Firm contract. But when it comes to seeking assistance or move out of the marriage especially for women, the difficulties resonate in the entire family leading to Disruptions and turmoil.

The option of family or couple therapy is rarely opted. The assistance folk healers, elders, advisors is sought more likely to be Sought before consulting mental health professional. Thus, any kind of treatment is probably not much productive and prevalent beliefs remain unchanged.

In Indian perspective on side ring the fact that no family is perfect, problems are Manifested even in families with healthiest relations leading to frustration, painful Interaction and challenges among family members. Mental health services are Scanty, therefore families form an essential support system for the management of the problem and various situations.

But, the available resources also at times fail to Educate and train the members about the disorder or illness and the medication, apart From the information regarding therapy.

In recent years, the therapists, psychologists and counselors, have been trained in India to work on the approach of family therapy but a broader array of perspectives is Desperately needed (experiential, systemic, play therapy, attachment-based Approaches, emotion-based therapies, etc.), along with training in crisis intervention And trauma and adequate supervision and opportunities for consultations.

There is a Need of practicing and making family therapy a phenomenon that can be easily opted by all, especially in various parts of Indian cities as only a few centers exists in South India.

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