Family Traditions & Rituals: Creating a Connection Between Past and Present

Jeff Herring

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Family rituals provide a sense of belonging

The purpose of family rituals and traditions is to provide a sense of belonging to the family.

"Family rituals create connections between family members past and present, foster identity through individual participation and establish security through repetition, " says child therapist Art Cleveland.

Stephen Glynn, the founder of Developing Capable Young People, has written,

"Families that devote any regular time at all — as little as 30 minutes a week with small children or 30 minutes a month with older children — to some regularly structured ritual, tradition or activity, have children who experience much less serious difficulty than identical families in the same neighborhoods that spend no time together. "

"Research from many sources has shown that children who perceive themselves as important, contributing parts of a functioning set of ongoing relationships before the age of 12 are more resistant to peer groups, cults and extraneous programming during their teenage years than children who perceive themselves as insignificant to others. "

The benefits of family traditions and rituals

Regular and consistent family traditions/rituals can provide both adults and children with the following:

  • A sense of belonging
  • Identity and identification
  • Role models
  • A sense of purpose
  • Connections
  • Stability and continuity in a fast-paced and hectic world.

Not a bad return on investment, now is it?

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