Within the Shelter

As we move through a time of gathering with family and friends over the holidays, it’s worth considering the value of our closest relationships. One may not choose or even like one’s brothers, sisters or parents, but there’s no question that life-long connections are made when we grow up and grow older.

Shelter of Each Other Book CoverYears ago, I really enjoyed reading The Shelter of Each Other: Rebuilding Our Families by Mary Pipher. She recounts several case histories of families that repaired significant rifts and problems by increasing family time and decreasing distractions and interruptions. A key source of interference was technology– the 24×7 cell phones, computers, television, iPods, and “work from the office” that can change “at home” to “not at home even if present.”

Having grown up in a “camping” family that then built a basic beach house, I feel that I’ve benefited from much of the advice Pipher offers to others. Getting away from technology and spending time in spaces where family members really connect with each other can be tremendously valuable. I’ve seen the same argument made by “small space” architects and what they claim are the most cherished spaces for family togetherness. Last week as my family spent hours reading, talking and playing in a 16 ft in diameter yurt (at an Oregon State Park on the coast), I think we were hitting the marks.

Pipher wrote a great book. I’ve recommend it to parents (who are often thinking or struggling with how to deal with these issues), and several have thanked me years later for encouraging them to read it.

Comments are closed.

3 visitors online now
1 guests, 2 bots, 0 members
Max visitors today: 6 at 05:16 am UTC
This month: 8 at 09-08-2017 06:14 pm UTC
This year: 38 at 05-27-2017 07:36 am UTC
All time: 84 at 05-06-2013 07:12 am UTC