“Open your arms to change but don’t let go of your values,” said the world- renowned spiritual leader Dalai Lama. But how easy is sharing your life with a person whose core family values don’t align with yours? When two people decide to walk along the same path in life, what defines their actions at every stage and in every situation are their shared family values. And when values clash, the relationship is almost always at the risk of falling apart. So, it’s absolutely crucial to find someone who believes in almost the same family values as you do.
What we need to realize is that the role of family in society still remains a crucial one. And each family shapes their children according to their own set of values. Such family values encompass ideas, beliefs, concepts, and traditions that one believes in. It is, however, important to note here that values change with time, as people grow and evolve. So, in the long run, there can be a difference in values between partners because of this.
A mismatch in core values can also be caused by a difference in upbringing. Partners may also have grown up following bad family values, such as jealousy, excessive competition, and inequality at home. So, the values a family believes in depend on the family morality.
Likewise, partners may have different interests, likes, and dislikes, as no two people in the world are the same. But it is essential to have certain common core values in a relationship for it to stand the test of time. With the help of this article, we’ll help you find out the answer to your burning question, “Why are family values important?” We’ll also throw light on how such values shape relationships in the long run. So, read on.
Why Are Shared Family Core Values Important For A Successful Relationship?
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Do shared values in relationships hold any significance at all in the highly individualistic society that we live in? Well, according to a study, shared values between partners contributes to what is known as ‘couple development’. And the couple development theory states that couple who have shared values tend to have better relationships than those who don’t have shared values or goals. This is true in spite of individualism having grown by leaps and bounds over the years in the US.
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But how exactly do shared values and goals help couples strengthen their bond? Read on as we explore the role of common family values that help partners grow and forge a better connection with each other. Here are some major reasons why shared family values are important for a successful relationship:
1. They mirror a healthy support system
Family values might be different for each household, but the family still remains the biggest support system for an individual. At the end of the day, shared family values might be the difference between a healthy family dynamic and a dysfunctional one.
2. They help you deal with challenging situations better
Couples who share core values tend to face challenging times better, purely on the strength of the emotional support they get from each other. This also means they will have a healthy family life.
3. They encourage shared responsibilities
When you and your partner share core family values, there’s a sense of shared responsibility. Additionally, you won’t feel alone during times of crisis. This might include sharing expenses or taking care of the kids. Likewise, parents instilling values such as sharing responsibilities will make kids grow up in a healthy and equitable environment.
4. They help you make fast decisions
Shared family values translate to better and faster decision-making in relationships. If couples believe in the same values, there is less chance of conflict while making crucial decisions regarding careers or children.
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5. They protect you from bad vibes
Good family values strengthen your relationship and protect you from harmful external (or internal) influences. When you and your partner believe in the same values, you will be able to:
- Handle toxic elements better
- Manage and resolve conflicts in blended families
- Prevent negative vibes from jealous friends, relatives, or acquaintances from ruining your relationship
6. They provide a structure to the relationship
Shared values guide your relationships. You and your partner’s core family values give you the invisible rule book that provides a path to your relationship. Partners can have different interests, but if they share family values, it helps in smoothening their journey in life. In fact, studies have proven conclusively that children who experience healthy family dynamics have a better chance of being good partners in future.
So, we hope you now have a clear answer to the question “Why are family values important?” But what are the values that are sure to set your relationship on the path to success? The rest of this article will throw light on some core values that are integral to the success of a relationship.
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10 Family Values That Serve As The Foundation Of Successful Relationships
Now that we’ve answered your question “What are family values?” and explained why they’re important, let’s look at the top values that a couple must share in everyday life to have a fruitful relationship. Which family values you and your partner think are significant to the growth of your bond also depend on the answer to: “What is family for you?” While families that have generations cohabiting can believe in sharing everything, a modern nuclear family may believe in individuality and independence as its core values.
Remember, there can’t be any exhaustive list of family values that couples must share, as each couple may believe in different values. But we have tried to collate some common values that may help partners have successful relationships, while maintaining peace and sanity. So, here are some family values examples:
1. Maintaining harmony across age groups
It might sound strange, especially in these modern times where the nuclear family is the preferred family unit, but the traditional family value of respecting elders still ranks high on the list of family values that must be shared by partners. Love and respect for elders in a family is a shared value that brings in harmony. This also shows us the importance of family as a unit.
Of course, ‘generation gap’ often results in a clash of traditional values vs modern values, and this battle is perhaps fought in every household. But, at the very basic level, disrespecting elders or arguing with them shouldn’t be encouraged by a couple. Parents instilling values in children too should be mindful of this.
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So, for married or live-in couples, it’s important that:
- While raising children, they teach them to respect their grandparents
- Nobody is considered subservient in the family because of their age
- Everyone respects others in the family, irrespective of their age
- There is a civil discourse even when people argue, irrespective of their age
There’s not much to talk about in this scenario, as respecting people irrespective of their age is what a morally good human being would do normally.
2. Practicing good etiquette
In a study conducted in the UK among 2000 families a few years ago, it was found that despite modern family values taking over, some old-fashioned morals and teachings were still considered valuable. For instance, surprisingly around 76% of those surveyed said that having good table manners topped their family values.
Such traditional manners and etiquette might seem a trivial thing, but couples who insist upon them are the ones who maintain a certain level of discipline and politeness in their families. Imagine if you’re meeting your partner’s parents for the first time, and they see you waving your utensils about or chewing with your mouth open, because nobody told you these are frowned upon! What a disaster that would be!
Here are some ways couples can practice good manners:
- Holding the door open when their partner is behind them
- Saying “Please” and “Thanks” when they’re requesting their partner to do a favor
- Not starting to eat at a restaurant until their partner’s food arrives
These small habits of couples go a long way in refining their personality. This also helps them leave a good impression on anyone they interact with in future. This can also be one of the core values instilled by parents in their kids, that will help them grow into better people.
3. Spending festivals and special occasions together
The importance of family can be felt at its best during special occasions. Whatever be your equation with your partner and their family (or extended family), festivals such as Christmas or Thanksgiving, and special days such as birthdays and anniversaries, should be occasions to forgive and forget your differences and come together. This strengthens family relationships
tremendously. And the fun doubles in intercultural marriages, where there’s a mix of traditions from both cultures.
Couples can practice simple traditions, such as:
- Roasting turkey together
- Decorating the house together
- Exchanging gifts or notes of love
A relationship can stand the test of time when partners realize the significance of togetherness on such special days. Shared activities on such days enhance the importance of togetherness. Likewise, this can be one of the major values instilled by parents that can help kids learn how togetherness cements bonds.
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4. Splitting chores
Partners who believe in family ethics also believe in principles such as giving respect, working hard, and being honest. These values are reflected in day-to-day activities, such as splitting chores. In most successful relationships, partners share their chores, reducing stress and conflict. This helps in the following ways:
● If your children see their dad clearing the table and their mom doing the dishes, they will not complain when they are asked to make the bed, as they would know sharing chores is normal
● This also helps couples finish chores fast and focus better on the other aspects of the relationship
Dealing with a husband who doesn’t do chores is a common issue many wives face in old- school households, and this needs to be addressed. On the other hand, dividing household chores is one of the many modern family values, and this should be encouraged.
5. Donating to charity
Volunteering or giving to charity is a way to show that you care about society and believe in giving back to it. Volunteering can take any form. You can:
- Be part of groups that cater to specific issues, such as care for stray animals, children, or the elderly
- Work for the local church
- Donate monetarily to a charitable organization of your choice
These activities, if done with your partner, will foster a sense of togetherness. More importantly, such charitable initiatives may help you feel good about yourself and connect with like-minded people.
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When you’re in a long-term relationship, there are bound to be conflicts. And such conflicts can take various forms, from differences of opinion and resentments to big arguments or petty squabbles. But if you and your partner have the fundamentals of commitment right and maintain basic family ethics, any conflict will seem trivial.
However, commitment shouldn’t be one-sided. For instance, in a traditional family, divorce is bound to be looked down upon. In such families, trouble in marriage does not usually lead to the divorce courts at the first instance. Instead, there is an attempt made to reconcile and solve the problems. While this may seem like a positive stance initially, one should make sure one’s commitment and will to mend things in a relationship isn’t taken for granted by their partner. Commitment should also not extend to relationships that are abusive in nature.
7. Being adaptable
The secret to most healthy relationships is a couple’s adaptability. Just like seasons, situations in our lives too change with time. So, it’s crucial for a couple to realize that they may have to weather some storms together. Here are some obstacles that can crop up in long-term relationships:
- Loss of a job
- One-off infidelity
- Terminal illness or disability
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A couple that wants to be together will try and reach a solution to most such issues. They will try and unearth the root causes behind such issues and will try to resolve them together. This is where adaptability becomes a core family value that strengthens a relationship.
8. Being kind and compassionate
Being kind and compassionate to those around you never fails even when it comes to partners in relationships. After all, being a good partner also means being a good person in social situations.
Kindness and compassion are traits that make people attractive to their partners and maintain harmony in relationships. After all, charity begins at home, and only if one is kind to their loved ones, such as a family member, can they be kind to others. And nobody wants to be in a relationship with a rude or obnoxious individual with no concern for other people.
9. Being trustworthy
Being trustworthy in a relationship is crucial when it comes to long-term relationships. And trust begets trust. So, the more you make your partner feel trusted, the more they will trust you. But there are limits to how much one can showcase this value. After all, trust and transparency should never be one-sided. It’s a value that brings in positivity only when both
partners share it.
10. Valuing family relations
One of the main objectives of having family values is to imprint a sense of belonging and rootedness in family relationships. A partner who has been raised in a dysfunctional, broken family structure with toxic parents will find it challenging to form strong romantic relationships or even blend in with an open and loving family culture. So, the role of family in society should never be undermined. Likewise, valuing family bonds depends a lot on your answer to: “What is family for you?” Do you believe in the traditional family unit, where people depend on each other, or the modern family unit, which stresses more on individual ambition?
But whatever you believe in, remember, human beings are social animals, and the family is at the very core of our society. Families help us navigate through the adversities of life and offer joy, support, and love. So, at the end of the day, partners should not just respect their respective families but also hold love and kindness for their partners’ families. This is a shared value that will always bring in positivity in a relationship.
- Partners may have different interests, likes, and dislikes. But partners should be on the same page, as far as values are concerned, for a relationship to succeed
- The importance of family values that are shared lies in the fact that they provide a support system, they guide the relationship better, they help partners go through challenging situations better, and help couples make faster decisions
- Some of the most prominent values that partners should share are trust, adaptability, loyalty, good etiquette, valuing family relations, and kindness
We hope, through this article, we’ve been able to offer a clear picture of the importance of family values in relationships. Remember, the top values that make a relationship successful aren’t necessarily the same for every couple. Likewise, long-term relationships require more than just shared values. But amid the many storms that may hinder your progress as a couple, the shared core values mentioned in this article will help you be each other’s rock. And it’s not even a situation involving traditional values vs modern values.
It’s about balancing modern values with old school ones and finding out what suits you best as a couple. It’s also about ditching the bad family values that hinder your progress as a couple. So, don’t let minor setbacks in life hamper your bond with your partner. Pull up your socks and focus on shared values to make your relationship a success in the long run.
All families practice core values that are cherished and appreciated by society and social systems. Some family values examples are being truthful, being adaptable, being loyal, splitting chores, and donating to charity. But these values aren’t exhaustive, and each family’s values depend on the family morality that they believe in at that point.
Shared values are important because they provide structure to a relationship, help couples make faster decisions, encourage shared responsibilities, and strengthen a relationship against bad vibes.
The disadvantages of shared values between couples are that you may find it difficult to break free and lead an independent life if there’s a breakup.