Grace studied all aspects of the family.The large family has a vastly different culture.The large family exists in ITS OWN universe.
Friends? That Is What Siblings Are FOR
People from large/very large families (6 or more children per household) create & exist in their specially constructed microcosmic universe. They oftentimes view their siblings as a source, even their primary source of friends, associates, & peers. Because of this, they feel that there is very little or no need to associate & form friendships with people outside their immediate family circle.
In fact, they contend that with the large number of siblings within the family, they are quite comfortable relating to only their siblings. They really cannot, do not, or will not understand the need for people to have outside friendships & companionships when family provide all these things. With family, they feel that they can fully relax and really be themselves without any negative judgement or any form of scrutiny from those outside the family.
They see their friendships and companionships within their family circle as a source of security & comfort. They contend that their relationships with their siblings are that emotional cocoon which protects, even shields them from having to interface with those outside their family circle. They furthermore relay that if they cannot be friends with and relate to their siblings, who else can they relate to. They are of the school of whom they can better relate to and be friends with other than people whom they have lived and grown up with.
In Large/Very Large Families, Siblings Are Seen As Friends
Siblings Really Understand & Accept Each Other
People from large/very large families assert that they really have no need to form outside friendships because they have everything they need from their siblings. They further feel that their friendships, associations, and peer relationships with their siblings give them a level of familiarity as well as ease that they would not find in outside friendships, associations, & peers. They feel that they have an authenticity in sibling friendships, associations, and peer relationships that they would never feel if they form such with those outside their family circle.
With siblings as friends, many people from large/very large families feel that the former are able to tolerate, even condone behavior that friends & others outside their particular family circle would not dare tolerate. They can really act, say, and even do as they please with siblings because as family, siblings will gave them unconditional love. They may feel that they can even act disrespectfully towards their siblings and all is forgiven whereas if they acted that way towards outside friends, they may be cut off from that friendship.
They maintain that with siblings as friends, associates, and peers, they have a commonality of background, beliefs, mindset, and outlooks which they would not find outside the family circle. They also contend that they do not have to work as hard at sibling relationships than they would if they formed outside friendships and associates. They maintain that siblings understand them in a way that outsiders would not and never will in a thousand years. They also assert that siblings really know their unconscious, subconscious, and other psychologies as no one would nor would like to.
Siblings HAVEN'T a Choice But to Accept & Love Each Other-Now THAT'S Friendship
The FAMILY Is Always First, You Are Last, If At All
In large/very large families, children are encouraged and expected to act as a group collective. Individuality and any concept of self are strongly discouraged. Furthermore individuality and any concept of self are disparaged as signs of selfishness. The large/very large family environment, children are taught that their siblings are more important than they are. They are also taught to never place any importance on themselves and that familial needs, wishes, and desires takes far precedence over theirs.
As a result of this inculcation, people from large/very large families act and think in groups, never as individuals. They also feel more comfortable as part of the group collective and construct. Since they had to interact with their siblings in their formative years, sibling relationships are all they know. It is natural that they form friendships, associations, and peer relationships with siblings because such were outgrowths and progressions of their companionship with each other. As they think and act in groups, what better companions to have than other siblings who think and act as they do.
They believe in the construct that siblings no matter how imperfect, contrary, and/or aggravating they may be, they are at least family. They maintain that siblings as friends, associates, and peers are far more trusting and safe than outside friends. Their contention is that siblings as family have a code and will never backstab them. They see siblings as sticking by them through good and bad as opposed to outside friendships. They are of the school that siblings as family possess a level of trustworthiness that outside friends do not and never will.
The large/very large family environment is one of exclusivity, especially to those not in the family circle. There are those very/large families who even deem family members that are not in their immediate family circle to be outsiders. In such families, there can be a claustrophobic closeness. Many children in large/very large families are only comfortable and safe with friendships, associations, and peer relationships with only their siblings. They are loathe to be friends and associate with children outside of their family circle or even their immediate family.
The culture and environment of the large/very large family oftentimes goes beyond exclusivity regarding those outside of their family circle and into levels of clannishness. It is quite normative for large/very large families to adopt an attitude of us versus them. They feel that anyone within their family circle is better, more credible, and relevant than any outsider. They may even contend that outsiders are considered untrustworthy, suspect, and/or otherwise negatively based upon the premise that they are not family. To the large/very large family, only family members related by sanguinity are considered to be family. There are those are go as far to proclaim that only immediate family member, especially siblings should and ever be considered family, even cousins and distant relatives are seen as outsiders.
It is not unusual and even quite normative in large/very large families that friendships, associations, and peers are siblings. If it is not siblings, such friendships, associations, and peers go as far as cousins. It is seldom that those from large/very large families have non-family members as friends, associates, and peers. Family in the large/very large family mindset and mentality always mean someone who is blood related. In the large/very large family environment, children are inculcated that family always have their best interests at heart, truly caring for their welfare while outsiders do not really care about them. They are also imbued with the premise of since it is family, they are always right even if they are proven to be dead, even horrendously wrong.
Family UBER Alles
People from large/very large families value family, particularly their siblings above anything and anyone else. That may even include their significant other, spouse, and even children. It is not unusual for people from large/very large families to put the needs of their siblings before that of their significant others, spouses, and even children. They consider the latter to be offshoots of family. They may even feel that the latter are not true family members as their siblings are.
They do not see it as unusual to support a grown sibling or siblings while neglecting the needs of their significant others, even their own spouses and children. They view their siblings as their extensions and contend that as family, they must help and/or serve the family first, even to the detriment of the significant others, spouses, and children. They contend that their family member or members will be with them while the significant other, husband, and even children will not. To go further, they maintain that they have a common history with their siblings that they do not have with their significant others, spouses, and particularly children.
People who enter into relationships with those from large/very large are to realize that they will never come first in the latter's life. When entering a relationship with a person from a large/very large family, his/her family, especially his/her siblings will always be first and foremost. This is part of the family paradigm. Those significant others, spouses, and even children who feel that they are to be first in such people's lives are in for a very rude awakening. It is part of the large/very large family psychology that the group is always more important than the individual. It is further part of the psychology that family means blood relations and family of origin. Their significant others, spouses, and even their own children are really not considered true family in the sense of the word but merely offshoots of family. They are seen, even treated as quasi-outsiders.
ABOVE ALL, It is Family
Distrust of Outsiders and Insularity, Even Parochialism
People from large/very large families because of having friendships, associates, and peers primarily with their siblings, develop a distrust, even an apprehension of those outside their family circle. To them, those outside the family circle are unfamiliar hence they are wary, even distrustful of entering into any type of friendship, association, and peer relationship with them. If they do enter into such friendships, associations, and peer relationships, it has to have some purpose or such relationships will not be entered into at all. To them, friendships, associations, and peer relationships should only exist within the familial sphere, never outside of it.
As a result of having such friendships and associations within the family circle, people from large/very large families are very insular. They also have a very narrow view of things because all they have been exposed to is their family beliefs, outlooks, and perspective on things. They may even have a very parochial outlook because their primary relationships and friendships are within their family circle. They often contend that it is a total exercise in futility to have outside friendships and associations when their family members would suffice. They may even maintain that outsiders cannot teach them the things that their family teaches them.
Perhaps, they may be wary of outside friendships and associations because the latter will expose and subsequently educate them on things which is not present within and beyond their family circle. They do not want this because they are subconsciously afraid that such exposure will cause them to question their familial paradigm. Their particular paradigm may be disrupted, even be destroyed regarding as to how they believe that things are and should be.
Insularity & Parochialism
People from large/very large family typical have their friendships, associations, and peer relationships primarily with their siblings. Since there are numerous siblings in large/very large families, they feel that there is really no need to pursue and cultivate outside friendships, associations, and peer relationships. They furthermore maintain that siblings have a common family history which outsiders do not have.
They may even put their sibling relationships before that of their significant others, spouses, and even their own children. They reason that their siblings are authentic family while the latter are merely familial appendages more or less. As a result of their primary relationships with their siblings, they may develop an insular, even parochial attitude and even mentality. They may even been afraid of forming outside friendships and relationships because such relationships will expose them to things that were not taught in their families. Furthermore, such exposure will even disrupt what they believe that family is and ought to be.
Large Families & Relationships Outside the Immediate Family Circle
To Those In Relationship w/A Person From a Large Family
© 2015 Grace Marguerite Williams
Trish on July 31, 2016:
Thank you for your response. Seeing as no resources have been cited, your articles are highly unreliable due to their basis on personal opinion. However, thank you for your time.
Grace Marguerite Williams (author) from the Greatest City In The World-New York City, New York on July 25, 2016:
I have dealt w/those from large families from extended family to associates. People from large families are very insular, distrustful, & very unfriendly towards those who aren't in their immediate family circle. They ONLY have relationships w/those in the immediate family. They even put their immediate family members before their own spouses & even children. They don't have outside friends like normal people.
Trish on July 25, 2016:
How many large families have you surveyed to get this information?
Grace Marguerite Williams (author) from the Greatest City In The World-New York City, New York on November 29, 2015:
Thank you so much for responding, it is greatly appreciated in kind.
Al Wordlaw from Chicago on November 29, 2015:
Hi G, this is an interesting article
Grace Marguerite Williams (author) from the Greatest City In The World-New York City, New York on November 28, 2015:
What a spot on response to this hub. Thank you for responding. You have echoed the feelings of many a child from large/very large families. Even as adults, people from large/very large families have friends only with their siblings. They believe that outside friends are totally unnecessary. One of my classmates, one of 19 children, only friends are her sisters, no outsiders.
Kris on November 28, 2015:
I'm not sure that this necessarily the view of the children in the family, but is the view of the parents forced on the children. I always wanted to have friends, but my parents said the only friends we needed were each other, because friends, boyfriends and even spouses will always leave, but family is always there for you.
If I or one of my siblings made a friends, then instantly all of the other siblings were friends with that person too, not by choice usually, but because we were not allowed to go somewhere by ourselves, all of the other siblings had to go as well. Many friendships were shattered as my new friend quickly became tired of having to invite not only me, but all of my sisters for a sleep over as well, I imagine their parents were tired of it too.
If you had asked me about friends, I would have echoed what my parents said, not because it was I thought, but because it was what my parents said, and I was not supposed to question them. If I spoke my mind, most likely one of my sisters would tell my parents what I said and I would get in trouble.