When family members fight, it can tear the family apart! Family conflict is nearly inevitable in many family units. Conflict in family can be defined as “disagreement or opposition; clash” (Dictionary. com). When family members disagree on something, it is difficult to make them see eye-to-eye and resolve their conflict. Family conflict can arise in family units when family members have different values or priorities. It may be due to lack of communication, family roles, family structure, family traditions, children, money management and more.
For example, if one family member likes sports while another is uninterested in them family conflict can occur. Another example would be if nobody on the family manages the household budget. If that goes unresolved it can cause fear among family members that their hard-earned money might go missing. This kind of conflict is caused by lack of communication between family members about what they value and how they define importance of certain aspects regarding their life together as a family unit (Minuchin).
Sometimes these conflicts are not resolved because it becomes easier for family members to relinquish family roles and just agree with each other. For family conflict to be resolved, family members must be willing to communicate with each other and find a suitable solution that works for everyone in the family unit (Minuchin). A number of factors can affect family conflict such as: family income level, family roles, family structure and more (Dictionary. com).
These factors can add an element of stress when it comes to family conflict resolution because there is additional pressure coming from outside sources into the unit which causes even more conflict. Every family has their own way of handling conflict among family members. It could be based on their culture or it could stem from previous generations and how they had been taught (or not taught) to deal with family conflict. For example, family members might not address the issue at hand and prefer to avoid it by changing the topic or turning attention away from the family member who is unhappy about how things are done in their home (Minuchin).
This can cause family conflict to fester until there is a blowout which causes family members to lash out at one another. One common solution for family conflict resolution can be found through family communication, but this requires family members engaging with each other positively and without judgment. Asking questions such as “what could we do so you feel more comfortable” instead of questions that start with “why” add an element of positive communication into family relationships (Min).
By having open dialogue among family members, family conflict will be addressed and resolved in a non-threatening way. While family conflict is normal, it shouldn’t be allowed to escalate to violence or abuse among family members. If family conflict is not resolved family members might begin to avoid one another which can cause family structure to fall apart (Dictionary. com). It could also lead family members to neglect family traditions that have been passed down from generation after generation which causes the foundation for the family unit as well as its values to become damaged or broken down.
When this occurs family members might feel even more disconnected from each other than they did before there was any type of conflict within the unit. If left unresolved these issues can create an environment where children are exposed to things such as family violence and family abuse. Family conflict can arise due to family values or priorities getting in the way of family members sharing the same space (Dictionary. com). This type of conflict is not resolved if family members wish to avoid it instead of discussing their feelings with each other and finding a common ground where everyone feels comfortable.
These types of problems can affect family structure, traditions and family roles which could cause the family unit as a whole to fall apart (Dictionary. com). For family conflict resolution to work all family members must engage in dialogue without judgment and be willing to cooperate with one another until there is a solution that works for everyone involved (Minuchin). The factors such as family income level, family roles, family structure and more can affect family conflict resolution because family members are not always willing to communicate with each other.
Asking questions such as “what could we do so you feel more comfortable” instead of questions that start with “why” add an element of positive communication into family relationships (Minuchin). When family conflict is resolved, family members will have a stronger foundation for the family unit as well as its values. Family conflict should never be allowed to escalate to violence or abuse among family members because this can cause family members to neglect family traditions that have been passed down from generation after generation which causes the foundation for the family unit as well as its values to become damaged or broken down.
There are many different family types today, and there is tremendous amounts of family conflicts that a lot of the time end in a family breaking apart. The number one reason for family conflict is miscommunication, wherein most families emotions can run high creating very heated arguments that lead to regrettable things being said between family members which turn into long-term resentment.
Another cause of family conflict is unrealistic expectations from family members. For example, parents may expect their children to fulfill certain roles within the family when they grow up such as becoming a doctor or lawyer even though their child indicated from an early age that this was not the path they were interested in pursuing.
In these situations, it is best to talk openly with each other about these family expectations to ensure that family members are staying true to themselves and their goals while still satisfying the family. If family members show interest in pursuing these family expectations, then there should be no issues; however if family members still express disinterest in fulfilling these family roles, it is best to explore alternative options for them even though they may not fully satisfy the family.
Family conflict can also be caused by a lack of resources within families, where family resources are very limited due to low income or unemployment. In many cases, this causes family stress as family members do not have enough money or resources available to fulfill certain responsibilities such as paying bills, purchasing groceries for dinner every night, etc.
There are many different reasons why a family member would experience a lack of resources, however, family conflict arises when family members are unable to communicate their feelings with each other. If family resources are very slim, family members may want to sit down together and have an open discussion about the family’s current situation so that they can make sure all family members are kept well-informed of what is happening within their family.
This also helps family members understand why certain things are being prioritized over others, for example, if food or rent is not purchased regularly it may be because most of the family income has been allocated towards buying medication for a sick family member. When there is lack of resources in a family, everyone should feel included in decisions that affect them as this builds trust between all involved parties.