This is the second in a series of blogs by the winners of our #spaceforpeace twitter campaign on Interpersonal conflict.
By Nili Majumder,
Conflict is the common part of human interactions and occurs in different contexts of our lives; Conflict can cause resentment, hostility and perhaps the end of the relationships. If it is handled well, however, conflict can be productive/creative-leading to deeper understanding, mutual respect and closeness.
Family is the fundamental unit of human society and the principal institution for the socialization. Person learns how to communicate & process emotions. People also learn many of their values, beliefs & choices from their families. In family interpersonal conflicts often increases stress, anger, frustration and can jeopardize the relationships.
In childhood children are imitating the behaviour of their parents. Interpersonal conflicts in family members have strong effects on children’s psychology. Children are moulded by the family culture into which they are born and growing up, their assumptions about what is right and wrong, good and bad reflect the beliefs, values and traditions of the family culture; they also carrying into adulthood numerous attitudes and behaviours acquired in childhood.
Future generations who grow up surrounded by destructive conflict may, as adults, determine never to participate in discord. In this situation, the person may never have learned that there are effective, adaptive ways to communicate in the face of conflict. Even those who later reject all or part of the family culture often discover that they are not entirely free of their early influences. No matter that they promise themselves they will never repeat the mistakes of their own family—certain cultural attitudes and responses are so ingrained in family members that they continue to affect their thinking and behaviour, whether or not those individuals are aware of such influences.
Attitudes and expectations about the roles of men and women vary from one family to other; it is an integral part of family culture. E.g. the boys or girls raised in a family in which female members are empowered are exposed to a very different family culture than from the one where female members are not socio-economically empowered.
When the society are not recognised or valued different practices, beliefs of families from different cultural backgrounds; it can also lead to miscommunication or misunderstandings, it affects family. Lack of understanding about differences is called discrimination. Discrimination impacts negatively on individuals and entire societies. Valuing and respecting diversity encourages people to see differences among individuals and groups as common and positive; inclusive positive attitude promote respectful relationships and reduces the discrimination and isolation.
This is when we need to talk about the role of education in our culture.
Education is the process of facilitating learning or the acquisition of knowledge, skills, values, beliefs and habits. It is important that the education at each step must be high standard and universal in order to ensure appropriate learning outcomes that provide knowledge, skills and attitudes for an active citizenship. Qualitative/scientific education is important because it helps to establish quality learning environments that are rights-based, gender-sensitive, healthy, open minded and tolerant. It also enhances life skills such as critical thinking, decision-making, communication, negotiation, conflict resolution, coping, and self-management; it can be applied in violence prevention also.
Qualitative education can empower children to participate in activities to bringing constructive changes in the society, because qualitative education enriches our culture and ensure to make resilient families that provide tolerance, cooperation, respect to all human beings and their rights.
According to World Economic Forum among World happiest countries like Denmark and other Nordic countries achieved gender equality and there have strong presence of women in leadership positions.
We learnt from the World’s happiest countries that if we ensure gender equality, qualitative education & jobs for all, women empowerment and increase the women participation in decision making, all social factors will help to make resilient family.
In a resilient family (where women are socio-economically empowered & family members have quality education) future generations are getting the culture that in any critical situation (facing hunger, poverty, conflict) & if they belong in the leadership they will never loss patience power, not to use abusive language and not involve in corruption or unfair activities.
We can say that resilient peaceful families ensure that there is peace in society and vice versa.
Happy families can change the world.
About the author: Nili Majumder works as the Gender Equality Advocate on Social Media for the Global Fund for Women.
Note: The views expressed in this blog are of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of UNESCO MGIEP.