Happiness from Joint families — A myth

Joint family happiness = zero

Elders fondly remember the days of their joint family, and criticize the current day culture of nuclear family. They show how the family values and respect for elders deteriorate as families become more self centered around nuclear families.

My Perception: Joint families live as joint families just for economic reasons, or because of imposition from family elders. The families, while living under a single roof, hold a lot of grudge against one another. They give or receive hurt from each other almost on a daily basis. While of facade of a joint family makes a good story to tell in a future date, the experience of living through a joint family, is nothing but a deep dark hell.

Bullies and Meeks: Each joint family have members who are total bully. Given a chance, people would pray they are rather dead than alive. The meek go through tremendous agony on a day to day basis. They cry when they are alone. They wish someone in the family can understand their feeling and be supportive. However, they are in a deep well, and can never receive support from anyone.

Clashing Personalities: Two type A’s within the same family under one roof is a recipe for disaster. Constant verbal fights makes it hard for people to live under the same roof.

Disrespected and Ignored elders: Elders in the joint family are ignored and disrespected all the time by the youngsters. They consider the elder to be the one that adds no economic value to the house. They have not seen the days when the elder was providing for the family, so they do not realize the value the ender brought to the family. The youngsters just think of elders as a liability, and something that they must live with. So they have no reason to respect them. They do not seek advice from them, and ignore noticeably the unsolicited advice.

Not universal: I am sure the phenomenon I have described is not universal. I wish and hope there are cultures where Joint Family brings family harmony, like they show in some Disney Movies. However, the ones I have seen are far from ideal.

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