The term family values has been operationally defined for the purpose of this entry as the standards of behavior that the family, the primary socialization unit in an individual’s life, upholds as important and worthy of practicing. Family values are stable and tend to endure across generations. These values are often goal directed and speak to the very foundation of a family’s beliefs, attitudes, rituals, structure, and progress. Family values directly or indirectly impact roles of family members through communication patterns, conflict resolution strategies, and decision-making processes. They also tend to lay a strong foundation in the life of the individual. The difficulty in monitoring these values has largely to do with the fact that the family system is also affected by outside influences that ...

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