Celebrating Holidays and Special Occasions: An Introduction
Did You Know?
- Families who celebrate special occasions are more likely to raise kids who have a strong sense of identity, are healthy, have close ties to family members, and succeed in school. 1
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- The more meaningful older teenagers felt their family rituals were, the more likely they were to have a strong sense of themselves and be able to handle the stresses of going to college freshman year.2
- Families who share the preparations for a family holiday are more likely to continue traditions. In too many families, one female (typically between the ages of 40 and 59) does all the work.3
1. Barbara Fiese and others, “A Review of 50 Years of Research on Naturally Occurring Family Routines and Rituals: Cause for Celebration?” Journal of Family Psychology 16, no. 4 (2002): 381-390.
2. Barbara Fiese, Family Routines and Rituals (New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 2006), 97.
3. Pauline Boss, Loss, Trauma, and Resilience: Therapeutic Work with Ambiguous Loss (New York: W.W. Norton, 2006), 192.
4. William Doherty, The Intentional Family: How to Build Family Ties in Our Modern World (Reading, Massachusetts: Addison-Wesley, 1997), 3-16.
5. Margaret Leach and Dawn Braithwaite, “A Binding Tie: Supportive Communication of Family Kinkeepers,” Journal of Applied Communication Research 24 (1996): 200-216.
6. Peter Benson, Peter Scales, Nancy Leffert, and Eugene Roehlkepartain, A Fragile Foundation: The State of Developmental Assets among American Youth (Minneapolis: Search Institute, 1999), 16-17.
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What the Research Says:
Building Developmental Assets in and with your children helps them feel supported during family celebrations and special occasions. Meaningful holidays can help every family member feel a sense of importance, belonging, and support.
Everyday Steps are the little things you can do as a parent, every day. These little steps add up to successful kids in the long run. Look for the Everyday Steps icon throughout ParentFurther, and remember: The little things you do—every day—add up!