What is the “perfect family”? Perfect could be where both the parents are present, fully involved in their children’s lives, happy, and secure with their jobs and family life. Marriage was the cornerstone of that perfect family of years ago. Increasing divorce rates have changed that definition; children born outside of marriage have also increased by almost 50%. The good news in all this is that the rate of single families has decreased considerably in the last decade. That means, families now are more or less stable, whether they are families of single parents, divorced parents or unmarried parents. Nowadays, both parents are most likely to be wage earners, unlike in 1945 where only the fathers worked. This has given families a higher standard of living and the parents can live quite comfortably independent of each other and still provide for their children.
The family in 1945 consisted of a father, mother, and children; that has now changed to a modern family with new and many broad definitions such as father and father, mother and mother and polygamist families where there are multiple fathers and mothers. The number of blended families and families that have a stepfather or a stepmother has increased tremendously as remarriage is very common in today’s society. The adoption rates have also increased since 1945 – this is because the stigma of adoption has been lifted considerably and is now seen in a positive light.
Marriages between races and people from different countries are now being fused, which was very uncommon in traditional families of the year 1945. The woman-empowerment movements from the 1960’s and 1970’s urged women to marry later in life, have fewer or no children. Women began to feel more independent and having the ability to earn an income, they became less reliant on their husbands. Divorce became easier, with fewer legal restrictions, and, as a result, more common.