Editorial: Family

When – during our last editorial conference – the question was asked who would write the editorial on the subject “family” for the 3rd edition of PonderingTime, I shrugged shoulders at first. I didn’t have to think long about my ambivalent desire to present the topic “family” to our readers from a personal point of view and not as the publisher of PonderingTime.

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The reason I had to flinch was, because family has affected, moved, hurt, humiliated me from many perspectives in my own life and though has given me little real happiness. Ambivalent, because an attitude towards the family has developed out of that, which still causes doubts in me today. And because I have so many personal issues with the subject “family”, the heart’s desire arose to express myself, because it is important for me to gain knowledge in my old age as to why all good intentions so often go wrong in life, quite contrary to the longing trying to avoid the bad giving priority to the good.

Surely, I am not the most suitable author for this topic, but exactly because of that or maybe just despite it all I did make a special effort presenting my point of view from another perspective here, to our readers.

I don’t know whether you – dear readers – have noticed that family as a topic is romanticized almost without exception by the media all over the world, no matter what orientation they are. There is only talk about the good and beautiful, the family is presented as a role model and everything connected to it is romantically illuminated as an absolute “ideal”, as if there were hardly any quarrels and bad events within the families. Not to mention real cruelty.

Not only in the Latin American countries, also in the Anglo-Saxons environment the necessary fundamental unit of the family is put on the pedestal of idealization. All other life models are warned against and admonished because of risking decay. Peace, happiness, cohesion and noble abilities, including well-being and the absolute elation is said to be found only in the family-unit.

In my eyes this is an absolute loss of reality none existent in everyday life. In fact, happy family communities are very rare. And because we all long for a cozy home – happiness alone, so much so, we don’t get anything else served up by the media. Daily life brings us far less happy family life than we would wish.

In this issue we have asked our authors from all over the world to present their views and experiences about family. This has shown that family is a diverse issue. As we read, between the lines we feel emotions, insights, pain, mud, defiance and remorse, indulgence and anger, all those things that happen daily in family life. But above all also love, which is ultimately what it is all about, but which is also often perceived as misguided and diluted. None of our writers romanticized the family as I have described it here before.

While I still believe, despite all this, that a strong family is the ideal starting point for young people to face the disappointments of this world, I would like to point out that it is usually more of an act of providence to be born into such a fortunate family unity.

PS: Our contributions deal with the topic of the family in their own way, but perhaps you see things quite differently. Why don’t you tell us about it? Since a few days we have equipped PonderingTime with a comment function at the request of our readers. We also look forward to your opinion.