An interview conducted with a single parent family

ms. Teresa’s family

Family is who they say they are. With diverse dynamics, different components, and setting, they are still family. The family assessment helps in understanding health issues that affect individual family members and intern the whole family as a unit and seek ways to improve the health of the entire family.

The interview was conducted with a single parent family consisting of one adult, a mother, ms. Teresa, a 38-year-old lady and two young girls, her daughters, Ashley aged ten years and Ivy is five years old, ms Teresa works as a nurse in a nearby hospital, and her two daughters both attend a local charter school, Ashley is in4th grade. At the same time, Ivy is in kindergarten; they live in a rented two-bedroom apartment in a clean gated community compound and own a car that they use for transportation. The Teresa family is of black African origin, having migrated to the United States of America one year ago on a green card visa. They are Christians and of middle-level social class.Ms. Teresa has an arrangement with her neighbor, a single mother of one son aged six years, to take turns in caring for the three children when they get home after school. She and her neighbor work alternate days to make this arrangement work.

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Ms. Teresa’s value on her health

Ms. Teresa values her health and that of her children, being a single parent, she bears the sole responsibility of ensuring health to the family; she does not smoke cigarettes or take alcohol. She provides healthy meals by preparing food at home for her family, bearing in mind the locally available ingredients as she tries to maintain the type of food the family was used to eating back in her home country. Mealtime is very important to her and her children, Ms. Teresa tries to have at least one meal with her children each day. She states that she feels her family is healthy as they seldom fall sick. Ms.Teresa has enrolled in a local fitness center where she exercises three times a week and takes her children out to the park to play and use every weekend to keep fit. Sleep and rest are one of the things she considers necessary, to achieve this she ensures the family goes to bed by 8 pm on weekdays and wakes up by 5 am to prepare for school and work; this gives them 8-9 hours of sleep also clean and comfortable beds are provided to enhance sleep. None of them uses sleep aids. Ms. Teresa has ensured that her children are up to dated on immunizations. The whole family goes for visual checkups once a year. She is of sound mind and makes the right health decisions for her family and is very knowledgeable on health matters; she takes every step to ensure her family remains healthy.

The Teresa children are updated on their immunizations and visit the eye doctor for annual visual examination; this is a good health pattern strength as its preventative. It keeps all the immunizable diseases at bay and ensures healthy growth, especially for the children. Ms. Teresa uses reading glasses, and the annual checkups guarantee the quality of the lens in the reading glass is good, the visual checkups for the children verify that this sense is functioning well.

Secondly, this is a family that eats healthy home-prepared food and exercises a lot, and this is a good health pattern strength. Lifestyle diseases are quite rampant in the world today, and to keep healthy, a decision must be made and efforts put into maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Ms. Teresa is doing a great job at that.

Despite all the right things happening in this family, ms Teresa expresses that she is still psychologically traumatized after her husband walked out on the family, she distrusts people especially those of the Male gender, and this can affect her children’s relationship with people of the opposite gender

Ms. Teresa has limited knowledge on health insurance policies, and as a result, she makes decisions that can affect her family negatively for example, because her insurance does not cover annual checkups for all senses except visual she opts not to take her children for full medical checkups at least once a year, this is dangerous because growing children need medical checkups annually

Ms. Teresa is a single parent taking care of the children in a very demanding and challenging world; this means she has to work twice as much as other families with both parents present. These can lead to fatigue and illness due to neglecting oneself to provide for the children. She states that sometimes she feels very overwhelmed with all that is expected of her as a single parent.

The family systems theory can e used to solicit changes in a family member that will, in turn, bring changes to the entire family by looking at the family as a system. A system does not work alone. It contains subsystems; every family member is a subsystem of the primary system, which is the family. It is possible to bring positive change to a problem that affects the whole family by bringing change to one member. As the one member changes, the entire system which is the family begins to experience the effects that the change brings on and eventually the whole family can embrace the positive changes, this is because what affects one member affects the entire family (Bitter &Carlson, 2017, Yoder, Ruch, &Hodge, 2016).

An example is where everyone in the family is a smoker. As a result, they suffer from frequent respiratory infections. If one member is health educated and stops smoking, his respiratory infections reduce, and his health improves. The rest of the family can see the positive changes and the effects, one by one; they begin to change. Eventually, the whole family stops smoking, this saves the family money, and they can function at a better level too.

Family health evaluation is essential in comprehending matters relating to the health of family members at the individual level and family level as well. How the family works as a unit and how individuals affect the whole family, it seeks to find ways to improve the health of the family as a unit.


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