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Family A family is a group of people that live together under one roof. It is the most important institution in our society. A family is critical for raising children. It forms their personality during development and it supports us during hard times. A family usually consists of members related by blood, but it is also possible to adopt a child from a foster-home. Although that is quite difficult, because the parents have to be evaluated both psychically and financially, it is always better than leaving them in an orphanage, as the children there are almost always neglected in some way. There are 2 types of family,nuclear and extended. A nuclear family consists of a married couple and their children. An extended family includes grandparents, uncles, aunts, cousins, nieces and nephews. The extended family is usually separated in the Western countries, but in Asia it is still normal for many generations to live together in one house. A family is a place where children establish most of their values, mannerisms, preferences and opinions. They learn to behave, communicate and interact with others. They also discover their talents. When I observe my parents now, I can see many traits I picked up, some are bad and some are good. Whether they like it or not, children are usually very similar to their parents and when they start a family, it will be similar to the one they grew up in. If the family is somehow dysfunctional, it reflects itself in the individual’s life later on. Many mental problems and fears stem from a traumatic moment during your childhood. Starting a family is one of the biggest commitments a person can make. Some people dream of it for a long time and some are afraid of it. It is a great responsibility and one must consider carefully his or her financial situation and abilities, or else it will end up with a divorce. Well, nowadays single-parent families are more and more common, partly because it is socially acceptable to be divorced. One of the reasons is the decreasing support of Christianity, which didn’t approve of divorces. While it is good that we are free to do things we want, it shows that a lack of faith leads to a loss of morals in some people. Also, thanks to feminism, women get more opportunities to live on their own. There are also people who don’t want to marry at all, because they feel it restricts them and they want to pursue their hobbies and career. This is a big problem in the 1st world countries, as they have been experiencing a decline of births. I live alone with my parents. They sell newspapers and alcohol at a small shop. I don’t have any siblings. Most of my family is spread out through Europe. My aunts live in Germany, Denmark and France, my uncle lives at my grandfather’s house in Vietnam. All of them have university degrees, so they keep pressuring me to study hard. Their occupations are very varied. My uncle is a pianist with a PhD; my great grandfather was a Maths teacher in Paris, my aunts work as translators, doctors or managers. I’ve been to Vietnam only once in 2006, because my uncle had a wedding. I visit my aunt Tam in Hamburg about once a year and she always complains how fat I am and forces me to do chores in the house. Her German husband gives me money, so I don’t complain. She mastered German in about a year and a half. I have 6 cousins. One of them is currently studying Maths at Berkley in the United States. She visited me last year. The rest are not worth mentioning.