I just found this Science Daily article about the "Four Family Cultures of America Identified," and I was very intrigued by what was outlined.

Read the story, and take a look at the questions and observations below.

I have lots of questions about this that I would love to put to the authors of this study, but lets look at the categories:

The Faithful

The Engaged Progressives

The Detached Parents

The American Dreamer

My question is, is it possible for a family to be in one category and move into another category?

Were there some families that defied these categories, by being blends of one or more styles? I wonder if so, what those numbers and descriptions look like?

What was the family type you inhabited as a child?


Is the family-type of your childhood similar to or different than the type you inhabit now?

Did your childhood, family type influence you when creating what you considered positive traits in your family?

Is there any element in another category you would like to add to your family-type?

I think our family is somewhere between  90% Engaged Progressive and 10% American Dreamer. We do our best to make sure our children are informed about their lives as citizens, even young ones, and also do our best to teach them how to be people who can find opportunity while still adhering to that Golden Rule.

Golden Rule--nailed that one, it's a big deal in this house.

Birth Control and Age Appropriate Sex Education, Nailed it.

R- movies, not so much, but my kids are a bit young for that still, but they do have great freedom in this household to read just about any material they wish to, with a few obvious exceptions.

Now for the other questions:

How do these family-types affect political demographics, or the "atmospheric" conditions in a community?

Take this excerpt from The Faithful family type:

Raising "children whose lives reflect God's purpose" is a more important parenting goal than their children's eventual happiness or career success.
How would one communicate a vision of common good, to another family[s] who might not share your definition of the concept of good, and who see all other things are secondary or tertiary to faith?

I can think of many times, being in a exchange where someone hints that if you are not of their faith that you lack "Family Values" to which I have responded, "Sure we have values, they just aren't your values". But looking at these types of families, described, I can see the outline of that cultural disconnect.

What one family may identify as "family friendly," may be interpreted as the complete opposite by another family-type.

To me this is sort of like identifying cell-types in an organ or tissue. That a majority of one or two types would determine common community values in a town or neighborhood or school.

Which family type is dominant in your community or school? And are you a part of that dominant paradigm?

For instance, in my area the Faithful Family is the dominant paradigm, but we are an Engaged Progressive Family.

So most of the adult/parents we encounter put a big emphasis on church and faith, whereas we are as a whole, very skeptical of those items, especially in terms of organized religion.

This has a profound effect on how we socialize, and in some cases, IF we socialize with other families.

What would you do, if you found yourself in a family type that was in the minority in your community? How would you bridge that gap? Or would you even bother to try?

What are your thoughts and experiences with regard to these categories? Do they make sense to you?

4:56 PM PT: Thanks to the sharp eyes and wit of mweens, it was brought to my attention that the funding for this project calls for closer scrutiny of this study, and it's future applications if any. See: https://en.wikipedia.org/... for more information. As pointed out by Jplanner the phraseology in a statement made about Judaism, Islam and Christianity, was overly broad and illustrates bias towards Christian religious paradigms, which may indicate further issues with the results of the sampling. Hopefully the entire study will be out soon so interested parties can have a good look.

Originally posted to GreenMother on Sun Nov 18, 2012 at 04:36 AM PST.

Also republished by Barriers and Bridges.


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