Wednesday, 20 October 2010

Debate: what is a family? Are we destroying it through divorce?

Hi, I understand this is a SENSITIVE issue, so, when you leave your comments (hopefully after watching the two videos and reading the vocabulary and expressions for the second one I left as a first comment), make sure you do it tactfully and respectfully. By all means, speak your mind so that other people can agree or disagree with you (again, tactfully...).


  1. hydrogen technologies – technologies oriented towards the use of hydrogen as a source of energy.

    carbon footprint – the effect our individual actions have on the release of carbon dioxyde into the atmosphere, thus worsening the greenhouse effect.

    Eloquent – skilled at organising ideas and putting them into words with clarity and persuasion.

    well-versed – well-informed, educated, cultured.

    root cause – the first or main cause behind something.

    Predicament – difficult situation.

    Anticipation – trust, hope, happiness or excitement placed on something you expect as imminent.

    rising up to challenges – being able to tackle and confront challenges with a positive “can-do” attitude.

    display symptoms – show symptoms.

    come up with – find and produce a new idea.

    Approach – way of getting closer to understanding an issue from a specific angle.

    perform a diagnosis – carry out a diagnosis.

    reach into their vast resources- look for something you can use among the things you already have. Resource: something (objects, materials, capacities) that are available to you.

    throw-ayaw mentality- consumerist mentality consisting of throwing things away and buying new ones rather than getting them repaired.

    foreclosures: repossessions of properties by banks due to their "owners" defaulting in their monthly payments.

    high divorce rate – high percentage of couples who break up and divorce.

    figure out – imagine, understand.

    to be raised – to be brought up.

    Propagate – to spread.

    to permeate – to diffuse through (and influence) a large mass or group.

    baby boomer generation – generation in the 1950s USA (and Europe) characterised by a high birth rate.

    independent thinkers – people who think freely, without previously assumed constraints.

    to speak out – to speak your mind clearly.

    to stand for what you belive – to defend what you believe.

    to come at a price – not for free, at a cost.

    stand-alone mentality- way of thinking that stresses individualism (I can and must do it myself and for myself).

    to better – to improve.

    when it comes to – when we consider…

    to work out – to work properly.

    a way out - an exit.

    to trace back to – to follow the path something has followed in order to find its origin.

    there is something lacking – there is something missing.

    moral fiber – set of moral principles that guide your behaviour.

  2. In my opinion, family are those people on whom you can count on for wathever is happening in your life, not only people of your own flesh and blood. For some,family are friends.
    I do not think that we are destroying family through divorce, if your relationship with your partner is not good, your child will suffer the same way that if you are divorced and he will think that it´s because of him too. Furthermore, if he grows up in an enviroment where the fights and arguments are usual he may be more affected than if he was grown up by a single-parent who gave him all her love and tryed to do both roles, father and mother. It´s true that divorce it´s a really tough process for a child, but also for the parents. I think if they care enough about the child they will try to make himm suffer the less possible, they will talk to him, and explain the reasons of the divorce. It´s also true that the age of the child has an influence on the way he will responde to their parents divorce.
    To sum up, I do not think we´re destroying family through divorce.

  3. I think that is too difficult to define what a family is. Nowadays, there are a lot of types of families, in fact, recently I read a study that it was saying that only 4% of the families was composed for a dad, a mom, one daughter, and one son. It's incredible!, because it is the type of family that adds want to send us. So, in my opinion perhaps is the better to talk about structured and not structured families.

  4. As far as I am concerned, I agree with Irene in the first part of her comment. I also think that our families are not only aou parents or children, even though our siblings. Family is composed by all those people you have a strongh relationship with, those you can speak up with no fears an those who will go having fun with you when it´s neccesary but they will also let you cry on their shoulders when you do not feel right.

    On the other hand, I do not believe that we are destroying families through divorce since many times it is neccesary to avoid suffering an uncomfortable situations which are better not to live. People have to try a new life together, if they have never tried, they have never lived. Therefore, it can run ok or it can go into a disaster, before starting something you can not be sure about wht the future holds. That´s wht y think that divorce is a good way of leaving your partner if you can not living on the way you are doing at that moment. Of course, it is a difficult situation for those couples who have children but maybe those children would be worse if they see their parents arguing everyday or, even thought hurting each other.

    To conclude, I would like to comment that family is made by people you love and they love you too; you worry about them. And, divorce is not destroying families, because your family is not only your couple.

  5. aou: our
    wht: what
    that´s wht y: that´s why I
    even thought: even though

  6. I have to desagree in some points ,with the coments below.
    I really believe that ideal nuclear family, at last for me,is a woman a man and some children . Obviosly friends can love you and may be loved as much as you love your family , but this is in the definition of friend ,isn´t it?. You don´t have to include them in your family to feel so. You can say "I love my friend as much as if she was my sister or my family" ,because everybody is supposed to love their family, but she still isn´t your family anyway.I think they are simply diferent things, not better nor worse.
    In the other hand I am completly agree with you both , and with the speaker in the listening.Divorce although tough, can be a good solution when you don´t love your couple anymore or you even can´t stand him. Your child will suffer , but just for a while if you try to get on well with your ex-partner, and you don´t use them to hurt each other.
    Everybody have the right to look for hapiness , and may be you couldn´t find it out in the first try.
    Anyway, sometimes there are "couple crisis" you should have to intend to work out before thinking in a divorce at the first sight.