Family resilience

17 Nov 2019


STRESS, anxiety and depression among Pakistanis are at a peak. One out of every three Pakistanis is experiencing these conditions which are curable. Most Pakistanis live with their extended families. This is a good source of providing social support to each other, but stress, anxiety and depression are still on the rise in Pakistan. This means financial burden is not the only factor responsible; rather the lack of meaningful relationships among family members deliberate or otherwise — is to blame.

This is where the concept of family resilience becomes important. There is no uniform definition for family resilience as its concept varies in different societies and from country to country.

Family resilience needs to be introduced in Pakistan. Its contextual, operational definition for Pakistan should include: “family members should not compete with each other; instead they should have a collaborative, respectful and caring approach towards each other.

They should consider each other as equal and important members of the family. This operational definition has not yet been tested in Pakistan and research in this area is needed.

One reason family resilience could not be introduced in Pakistan is the country lack experts, especially medical ones, in this area. We need to train and develop experts in this field.

The family resilience concept is not taught in sociology, medical and nursing studies. It needs to be made part of the medical, nursing and sociology curricula. There has been limited research in Pakistan. To understand family resilience, more research is needed.

NGOs working in this area need to incorporate the principles of family resilience so that its benefits reach our citizens.

Sadaf Zindani, Dr Tazeen Saeed Ali

Published in Dawn, November 17th, 2019