2What is the cycle?The Family Life Cycle (FLC) is the EMOTIONAL and INTELLUCTUAL stages a person passes through from childhood to their retirement years as a member of a FAMILY.There are FOUR stages within the cycle.The stages are COUPLING, PARENTING, MIDDLE YEARS AND RETIREMENT.
3Four Stages Coupling Parenting Middle Years Retirement Expanding DevelopingLaunchingMiddle YearsRetirement
4Happenings in Stages…..In each stage, a person faces challenges in their family life.From these challenges, a person typically develop skills to help them work through the challenges.There are complications in each stage causing things to not go well. Examples would be severe illness, financial problems, death, etc.
5Why is this important?Developing new skills in times of challenges helps a person move on to the next stage of life with a healthy mindset.When a person struggles in a stage and moves forward, there are unresolved issues waiting to be dealt with.What would be some examples of unresolved issues a person may face?Unresolved issues= not being a couple that communicates effectively could impact the parenting styles and make it much harder to parent; if you are a very permissive parent when your children are young- your children may grow up and be an issue
6How to be successful?A person can learn the skills they miss in different stages of the cycle. This will improve your quality of life in any stage.Self-examination, education, and counseling can assist a person in being successful.Also, being realistic about different challenges and taking steps to deal with them.What are some examples of challenges a family might have to face?**May learn how to communicate better while a couple is in the parenting stage
7Coupling Stage Coupling is the first stage. Coupling is where a person develops a committed relationship with another person.Long term commitment or marriage is usually the outcome
8Coupling RemindersDuring the coupling stage, a person is connecting and committing to another person, which is the development of a new family system.With this connection, both people bring their own ideas, expectations, and values from their previous family experience.This stage requires skills of sharing, reflecting, adapting, and reshaping.Break into groups--- what questions should be asked when going into the coupling stage.
9CouplingCouples are faced to redefine their thoughts about the following:FinancesLifestyleRecreational activities or hobbiesRelationships with familySexuality or sexual compatibilityFriendshipsPutting another person's needs before your own.Relationships with family– I wanted to go home at least once a month and Mitch would rather use that time to hang out as a couple
10Skills you build…During this stage, you and your partner build the following skills:Advanced interpersonal communication.Problem-solving skills.Common spiritual and emotional developmentHow to form boundaries in relationships.When to place the needs or importance of the other person above your own.INTERDEPENDENCE
11InterdependenceInterdependence is probably the MOST important skill you learn in this stage.It is the ability that a person has to rely on another for support but also be able to do things independently.
12Winning at Coupling There will be bumps, but success is possible! Establishing a healthy relationship with your partner puts you into a position of success when moving into the next stage of the FLC.You learn importance of transition, commitment, and putting the needs of another ahead of your own.Why are these important?
13ParentingMany times, couples decide that they want to start a FAMILY. This decision should be discussed during coupling.When the decision is made to become parents, it is one that impactsIndividual developmentIdentity of a familyCouple’s relationshipWhy do you think all these areas are impacted?
143 stages of Parenting The Expanding Family The Developing Family Launching
15Expanding FamilyFirst part of parental stage when new members are added to the familyAlone time between couples drops drastically because time is focused on small childrenGreg and Sarah stories
16Developing FamilyChildren move into school and focus shifts outside the homeTeens are getting ready to leave their family
17LaunchingEnd of parenting stage when children are leaving the family homeSending children out on their ownExtended when adult children return home36% of young adults live in parent’s home
18LaunchingStarts when first child leaves for college and continues until all children are gone.It is difficult for some parents to establish adult relationships with their children, which is KEY for future success. WHY?Parents need to be accepting of new people that their children may bring into the family as well as new relationships their children establish with another family.STOP HERE FOR TODAY
19The Middle Years Children are gone and parents become a “couple” again Empty nest sometimes leaves parents feeling sad-others feel freedom and excited for new time to focus on each otherIncome pressures often decrease during this stagePeople start caring for aging parents
20RetirementRetirement is the last stage of the Family Life Cycle. The person is no longer solely responsible for their children. They can enjoy life and live life fully and happily.This stage is about establishing NEW relationships (grandchildren or other new family members) as well as letting go of PAST relationships (death or divorce).
21RetirementIdeally, people in this stage are ending their career (by choice) and beginning a new path in their life that can be exciting.Time is spent now on new interestsWhat are some interests retirees choose to pursue?
22Sounds cool but…..Although retirement sounds like the good life, it can bring many challenges.Some people struggle with balancing their family with their new life and find it more stressful. Why do you think this is?Retired people may also have to care for an aging parent or an ailing spouse.
23Other challengesRetired people will also notice a decline in their health and physical and mental abilities, which can be frustrating.Also, retired people experience financial changes as well as social changes.It is also a time where death of a spouse, family, and friends occurs. Life is coming full circle.
24Do not despair though…Retirement is the last stage of the Family Life Cycle but not the “end” of a person’s existence.It is a time where a person can share their wisdom and knowledge with their family, enjoy their family, and find a new life.It is a time to be reflective and grateful for life.
25Quick Review Write down the 4 stages of the Family Life Cycle. For each stage, give a KEY characteristic of each stage.What stage are you most excited for and why?