Having children is often a personal decision that a person has to make.

Assignment 3


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Chapter 8

Question 1

Having children is often a personal decision that a person has to make. This decision may be between two partners, or just one person might choose to decide on their own for various reasons. Most of the time, the decision to have children rests solely on the would-be parent or parents. However, there are some cases in which other people must step in to make decisions on whether a person should be allowed to have a child or not. Therefore, most people should be allowed to decide on their own, but there are exceptional cases in which a person cannot be allowed to have a child. For example, a drug addict should not be allowed to have a child, especially when they do not commit to getting help for their addiction. Children born to such addicts will have multiple complications, and they are likely to die. Another group of people that should not be allowed to have children is those parents that have too many and cannot support them, hence having more children will put them in danger of problems such as malnutrition, poverty, sickness among others. Severely Mentally ill people who cannot take care of themselves should also not be allowed to have children because they are incapable of deciding to be parents in sound mind and others might take advantage of them.

Question 7

Some of the risks of reduced fertility rates are that countries will have a minimal workforce unable to sustain the economy of the country. Childcare and education sectors will suffer because children will be too few, and hence, people employed in these sectors will be out of jobs. The general economy will also suffer because there will be very few people to employ; graduates from schools and colleges will be really few, and there will be no one to work in the multiple industries of a country. Advantages of reduced fertility rates include the fact that states will be able to provide free services to all the citizens such as medical care and education. Every person will be able to find a job; hence, there will be reduced levels of unemployment. People will also be able to move from one country to another because there are no significant barriers to movement as there is high demand for labor in the low-populated countries.

Chapter 9

Question 3

The most influential in shaping a child’s development is gender. Right from birth, children are defined primarily by their gender. Parents buy their girls pink clothes and toys and paint the walls of their rooms pink as well. On the other hand, gender reveals of boys consist of blue colors, and this goes on to the clothes they wear when they are born. Boys and girls are also encouraged to play with specific types of toys depending on their gender; the girls holding tea parties with their pink-decked Barbies and the boys playing with fire trucks. As they grow up, children notice that their gender plays a significant role in the activities they take part in both at home and outside the home, and this is true among different races and social classes. Gender is, therefore, the fundamental basis of childhood development; other aspects also contribute, but they come after gender.

Question 5

Authoritative parenting style is the best for children according to psychologists and other child experts. This parenting style entails parents giving the child space and permission to make their own decisions, but the parents also set a limit on what the child can do (Seccombe 2012). It, therefore, presents a perfect balance between the authority of the parent and the freedom of the child. The reason why this parenting style works best is that at the developmental stage, children need to be given the space to explore their abilities and experience the consequences of their actions. However, the children still need a lot of guidance in making decisions, and this is where the authoritative parent steps in to set a limit to what the child can do. The result is a well-balanced child that is not afraid to speak their mind or take action, but they also know that there are limits to what they can say and do.

Chapter 10

Question 1

The US has very different policies regarding childcare when compared to European countries. One reason for this is that American culture is more individualistic and self-centered. The choice to have a family is therefore considered an individual one, and people who choose to do this should figure out a way to balance between work and their family without compromising their work. Europe holds family traditions in higher regard, and the government has policies in place to ensure that the family unit remains strong even though people have to work. Another reason is the high population levels in the US compared to Europe. It is challenging for the government to provide childcare and other related benefits to families with children because the number would be too high. In contrast, European countries have a relatively low population, and therefore, the government can step in, for example, women can take a longer time off work to raise babies while still being paid. Third, the US offers different work-family policies because there is a higher emphasis on the economy than social life. Everyone wants to work towards making more money, and this comes at the cost of spending more time at home.

Question 2

Helicopter parenting is characterized by parents who continuously watch over every aspect of their children’s lives at home and in school. The term comes from the fact that this kind of parents hover over their children as a helicopter does. This type of parenting results in a child that cannot handle many situations on their own and have to turn to their parents to help them deal with any problems or challenges they encounter in life. Helicopter parenting is not suitable for the family and especially for the children. Kids do not have the chance to develop problem-solving skills and other life-skills that will guide them as they encounter different situations in their lives. It also leaves children wholly unprepared and ill-equipped to deal with disappointments inevitable in life. Their parents will not always be there to help them, and they will be stressed because they did not learn essential coping skills while growing up. Most parents in the 21st century employ the helicopter parenting style, and it often results in children becoming failures when parents step out of the picture. A person’s success depends on their personality and skill when it comes to handling various situations and challenges they will encounter in their life.

Chapter 11

Question 1

Families today experience higher levels of stress than they did in the past for many reasons. One of the reasons is that both men and women play an equal role in getting a job and providing for their family. In the past, the man went out to work while the woman stayed home to care for the children and the household. Today things are different with females having more opportunities to work and earn as much if not more than their partner. For this reason, the division of chores and labor within the family has to be restructured, and this can cause tensions within the family. Another reason for higher levels of stress within the family is the high cost of living that demands more work to earn more money. As a result of working a lot and not enough leisure time, people find themselves stressed out, and any conflicts are exacerbated greatly, raising stress levels. In addition to this, families have many more demands on their time, such as work, school, and social activities, which leads to a very fast-paced life. Families struggle to balance between all the demands, and this causes a lot of stress.

Question 2

Family violence should not be regarded as a family matter because it affects many people in society. There should be increased intervention efforts because those who have suffered this type of violence are mostly stigmatized and even blamed for what they experienced. Victims have suffered mental, physical, and emotional harm as a result of family violence, and some are too afraid to speak out. Some of the ways to scale up interventions in case of family violence include encouraging neighbors and family members who may be aware of any form of violence to help victims seek help. They can do this by contacting social services or the police anonymously. They can also speak to the victims to let them know that there is help for them. Another measure that can step up intervention in family violence is giving offenders harsh punishment such as prison time and punitive fines and restraining orders.


Seccombe, Karen. Exploring marriages and families. Allyn & Bacon, 2012.