I come from a pretty traditional family unit. Two parents, two kids, living in suburbia. We had Sunday dinners with our grandparents and ran around during the holidays to make sure we could visit everyone. The only thing that was a bit “different” was that my mom was very career oriented and my father was more of the domestic one, which was not really the norm at the time. My sister and I grew up happy, healthy and with a lot of love for the members of our family.
Some say you can’t choose your family – and yes our blood relatives come with the territory, that’s for sure. However I have been truly lucky that in addition to all my blood relatives, I have many chosen relatives as well – those who have been there for everything and who support me with unconditional love. In our family, we have many of these figures and I wouldn’t have it any other way. We call them “aunts” & “uncles”. We have an older man who has been a big part of my life since I was born. Both my sister and I consider him like a grandfather. Family is not just who you are related to but who you might relate to.
Growing up, I admit that I was someone who would look at non-traditional families in a negative way. I don’t now if this was because of how society viewed them or if I was simply very sheltered in my typical family unit. I felt pity for those who had divorced parents or no siblings. However growing up in my generation came with this increase in conversations about these things – and I did eventually learn that families come in many shapes and sizes and they are all unique and fantastic!
Now I am grown up with a family of my own. Very similar to the family I grew up in. However I would no longer call our family dynamic “traditional” because there’s no traditional family anymore. A family is simply a group of people brought together who love each other, through thick and thin. Whether connected by blood, bond or something else, the modern family is every family! And I’m making sure to talk to my kids about this to ensure they grow up not having pity for families that are not the same as ours – and instead feeling nothing but happiness for all family types.
This month Netflix is celebrating the kaleidoscope of family possibilities. Start with parents (maybe two dads, a single mom, or a stay at home dad…), add a dash of half/step/full/adopted siblings, a side of grandparents, a pinch of aunts, uncles, cousins, a splash of pets, topped off with close friends (and all the combinations thereof). Now you’ve got a modern family — each uniquely quirky — yet picture perfect in its own way.
Grace and Frankie, Netflix’s new funny and fearless original comedy featuring Jane Fonda, Lily Tomlin, Martin Sheen and Sam Waterston, is a perfect example of how today’s families can shift, rearrange and blend in unexpected ways. When Grace and Frankie’s husbands leave them after 40 years of marriage—to be with each other—the women find themselves facing a change they never expected. They shift their perspective to get through it together, with the support of their new blended family and, of course, a sense of humour.
This is definitely a binge-worthy show that I have thoroughly enjoyed and I think you will too!
While my family is definitely more on the traditional side, we have our fair share of quirky characters who definitely complete the family unit (some might say I’m one of them). ha! I love each and every one of them and I wouldn’t trade the bond I have with each of them for anything.
Disclosure: This blog is a member of the Netflix #StreamTeam. As always, the opinions are real.