How does social pressure affect the family?

Social pressure as defined by the Webster’s dictionary, refers to the influence exerted by society in encouraging a person/s to change his or her attitudes, values, or behavior in order to conform to group norms - How does social pressure affect the family? introduction. There are so many social pressures that affect today’s families, especially in the Bahamas. The most common of these pressures are: unemployment, lack of finance, alcoholism, domestic violence and substance abuse. A social pressure can take the form of any of the above mentioned, but the most common of them seems to be unemployment.

This affects the family in so many ways. There are some parents that make a sufficient amount of income to support their families, but there are those that make very little money. The best way to get money is to get a good job. Yet there are some people who want to work but can’t find a job or are not qualified in the areas needed to obtain a good job. This is the main cause of unemployment. Being unemployed the parents now struggle to support their families. The parents are faced with the task of feeding, clothing, and sheltering their family.

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The only way the parents can provide for their families is by making money. Because there is no employment in the home, the parents are not able to provide provisions for their families. This can cause many things to happen to the family; homelessness, divorce etc. Domestic Violence; also known as abuse is also a very common social pressure in the Bahamas. This defined as emotionally or physically harmful acts between people Abuse between partners can range from being physical, psychological, sexual and even economical.

Spousal abuse affects every member of the family even the ones not physically in the way of harm. If the spouse is abused physically, they might get some injuries that are so extreme that it becomes virtually impossible to work without protesting in pain. Also the sight of the physical abuse could, and will scar the children that are witnessing it and they themselves are more likely to become victims of abuse or become abusers themselves. Physical abuse also affects the family financially seeing that more money would have to be used on medical bills than usual.

The spouse can also be abused mentally. After being married for some time the spouses may not look the same as they did when they first met. This may upset one partner and cause him/ her to lash out and say degrading and hurtful things to another spouse. This could cause low self-esteem or even suicidal thoughts. Any type of abuse though, can cause a spouse to fall into a deep depression. This can cause the child to lash out, because they are not receiving the love and attention that they need. There can also child abuse.

This is where a parent, step parent or even another sibling continually hurt a child physically or emotionally. Child abuse can occur to a child of any age, no matter how young or how old. Though it is not right most people do it, whether it is to release anger or maybe just because they feel like doing. The same feeling that can come upon and adult being abused can come upon a child, but the only thing about children is that in most cases they can’t leave the home or run away, they must endure it.

In the end this tears the family apart. The last social pressure that I will discuss that affects the family greatly and is very common is alcoholism. Often the main cause of alcohol abuse is stress. Stress can be cause by overwork, worry or just daily problems. A person under the influence of alcohol is not a very safe person to be around and if the alcoholic is the person handling all the financial papers in the home, the family would eventually find themselves falling into a state of debt.

The alcoholic would probably feel that it’s okay to keep spending money on alcohol to feed his/ her addiction and end up not having enough money to support his/ her family. A person under the influence may also become very aggressive towards his/ her family for no apparent reason leading to domestic violence; as discussed earlier. These causing communication in the family to suffer, because other members are either scared or just don’t want to deal with the drunk member. Worst of all an alcoholic parent can influence the child to turn to alcohol.

An alcoholic child is just as bad as an alcoholic parent maybe even worse. The child can become a criminal or even worst, dead. In the family, every member is faced with a social pressure at some point in their lives, but it is up to them as an individual to decide whether they are going to let the pressure affect them positively or negatively. When the family is faced with struggles they must band together and become stronger, and not let the things around them influence their attitudes and values.

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