The provinces of Alberta, Ontario and Saskatchewan, realizing the significance of families, celebrate a Family Day on the third Monday in February.
Given the importance of families to our society, why don’t the others seven provinces and the three territories also celebrate a Family Day in February?
Our nuclear family unit (parents and children) is changing very dramatically and has taken a severe beating in the past two decades or so. Today’s families have become increasingly complex and have changed for a number or reasons.
Single parent families, same gender families, and common-law families, to name several family types, are replacing the nuclear family unit to some degree.
However, no matter how the family unit has changed it is still an extremely important institution in our society.
Most humans crave a feeling of belonging and want companionship, advice and help in times of trouble. A strong family unit can provide all of these things and much, much more to the vast majority of people.
The family structure can also provide effective support and encouragement to members and it can be a harbour for security and trust.
Whether we realize it or not the family unit is the glue that holds a community together. From the community, the family unit extends out to hold a region, a province and a country together as well.
Our world would be a much different place, and not for the better, without strong family units or ties that we all share.
Society will keep on changing and evolving in the 21st century, but the family unit will remain strong and vibrant and important to society. Humans will always need that feeling of belonging and the feeling of comfort that a family can provide.
Even when there is trouble in a family the problems are often set aside in a family crisis and parents and siblings are there to help each other.
So, let’s get back to the original question – why can’t all Canadians celebrate a Family Day in February?
In addition to giving us a holiday in the dark, dreary days of winter, it would be great day to spend some quality time with our families and to remind ourselves that, yes, it’s nice to belong to a family.