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All around the world, when it comes to families, different cultures have different ideas of kinship, for example, family structure, authority, inheritance, and residence. In residence, in some societies, like in the West, after marriage, couples are expected to move out of their parent’s homes and into a new one where they create a new family; this is known as a neolocal family (Kellett, 2010). In contrast, some families have a few generations, including grandparents, their children, and grandchildren, all living together in the same residence. Such kinds of families are referred to as multigenerational families.

The Expectations of the Different Generations in Both Families

In a neolocal family, there are only two generations: the parents and the children. As such, the expectations will not be many in these families. However, the few expectations include faithfulness between the parents in honor of their marriage and being breadwinners of the family. Besides, parents are also expected to love and take care of the children and, if possible, make sure all their needs are met. Further, children are expected to respect and obey their parents and also help with some of the work in the household.

On the other hand, in a multigenerational household, there are many more expectations. First, the older generations, both grandparents and great-grandparents, have to mentor and educate the young in areas such as culture (Pilkauskas, 2012). Further, this generation is also expected to help take care of the young ones in case the parents are not around. The middle generation, i.e., parents, uncles, and aunts, are responsible for taking care of both the young and old, as they are mainly breadwinners. The children are expected to obey the older generations, help out with household chores, and help take care of the older people as well.

Attachment Issues in Multigenerational Homes

Several factors, including income and family size, have been shown to affect the quality of a person’s attachment relationships. Accordingly, Çabuk, Seven, Ildiz, Yeşilyurt, F., and Seven (2021), conducted a study that showed that children from neolocal families have fewer attachment issues compared to those in multigenerational homes. The main reason for this is the inconsistent and complicated nature of in-family relations, which influences attachment issues in multigenerational families. Complex intergenerational relationships that are present in multigenerational families lead to complicated child-parent and child-sibling relationships as lines are not well defined (Bester & Malan-Van Rooyen, 2015). For example, a young child can get confused as to who the primary parent is when he or she is being taken care of by grandparents, uncles, aunties, and their parents. Further attachment issues in multigenerational households arise due to loyalty issues. Accordingly, such households are all about the wider kin group as opposed to individual relationships. As such, a couple’s relationship where both individuals are keenly close to each other may be perceived as a threat to the rest of the group.

Benefits of Neolocal and Multigenerational Household

Some of the benefits of neolocal families include better financial stability since there are fewer people, hence easier to support. The second benefit is more independence as only two people, the parents, are in charge of making decisions. The third benefit is the ease of forming attachments and close relationships. This is because neolocal families tend to be more intimate and close-knit. On the other hand, the benefits of an extended family include shared economic responsibilities, which is crucial when one family member is not doing well. Secondly, extended families ensure that the family’s traditions and culture are not forgotten. Third, extended families offer companionship and security.

Difficulties of Neolocal and Multigenerational Household

One challenge faced by the neolocal family is the lack of support on occasions when one partner dies. Widows and widowers experience loneliness, especially in old age. Second, children can get neglected, particularly if both parents have full-time careers. The third challenge of a neolocal family is that being an autonomous unit, family tradition is hard to follow, creating a disconnect between larger family units. In multigenerational families, some of the challenges include, first, lack of privacy (Petronio, Jones & Morr, 2003). For example, suppose a couple gets into an argument; in a neolocal family, they would be hidden away from the eyes and ears of other people. However, in a multigenerational household, such matters will most likely be seen by numerous people who might even get involved, which only worsens it. These intrusions of family members into private matters are similar to those of public access. Secondly, as mentioned before, extended families affect an individual’s attachment psychology. Having too many caregivers can be confusing to a child regarding who their primary parent is. Third, there will be a lot of disagreements when it comes to raising children. Mostly, women are the ones who move into the man’s house after marriage. Notably, a woman could have different ideas on how she wants to raise her kids, and this could be different from the household she moves to. Such a situation could cause conflict in the household.


Bester, S., & Malan-Van Rooyen, M. (2015). Emotional Development, Effects of Parenting and Family Structure on.

ÇABUK, F. U., Seven, S., Ildiz, G. I., YEŞİLYURT, F., & Seven, Z. D. (2021). A study of the Attachment Stability of Children Living in Different Family Types (A Longitudinal Study of Children from the age of 6 to 11). International Journal of Psychology and Educational Studies8(3), 222-229.

Kellett, K. (2010). MARRIAGES & FAMILIES: INTIMACY, DIVERSITY, AND STRENGTHS By David H. Olson and John Defrain: Boston: McGraw Hill, 2006 489 pages, $92.19 (hardcover) ISBN 0-0732-0951-1.

Petronio, S., Jones, S., & Morr, M. C. (2003). Family privacy dilemmas: Managing communication boundaries within family groups. Group communication in context: Studies of bona fide groups, 23-55.

Pilkauskas, N. V. (2012). Three‐generation family households: Differences by family structure at birth. Journal of Marriage and Family74(5), 931-943.


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Multigenerational Households Paper

Write an 800-word paper comparing neolocal families (families that establish themselves residentially away from other generations) and families who have multiple generations (more than two) living in the same household.



Include the following in your paper:

What expectations might there be for the different generations in each of these situations?
What are the issues surrounding attachment in children, parents, and grandparents in multigenerational homes?
What are the benefits of each type of household?
What are the difficulties of each type of household?
Include three or more scholarly resources.

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