Thought on FAMILY after reading ‘Commonwealth’

This is not a book review as usual cause I already wrote a brief one on Goodreads right after finishing the book this morning. Even though it’s not one of the bests in my opinion, there are definitely lessons which worth being discussed.

To start with, the role of parents are described and emphasized quite clearly and convincingly through this book. It appeared to me that “my father has an affair with your mother” is something bigger and has far profound effect on our lives and who to know what “that something” might lead to in the future. The affair is between a father of four children and a mother of two girls and the ones suffering the most are everyone but the two main characters. The tangled relationship between two families are the source of everything, ranging from one’s happiness to one’s misery, most of which the children preferred not to mention or try to pretend it never exists at all. However, they know that if the affair did not happen, they might never get to know each other and more simply a fact is even if the affair did not happen between the two families, who to say that it won’t happen in the future with other families?

Having feeling for each other is not wrong, and never be wrong. What makes us human different from the algorithm machines is that we have consciousness and emotion. Therefore, it is not wrong that “my father has feeling for your mother” because emotion is nature-based and we rarely have any control over it. However, it is wrong that the father and the mother acted solely upon their feelings for each other and did not fulfill their responsibility as a parent and a member of their current family. I believe that when we agreed to marry someone and with him/her build our own family, there comes much more than just pure love itself: commitment, sympathy, sacrifice, etc. That’s why it is not easy or simple a thing to break the vow and move on with someone else. It is not impossible though, but before doing so, before you become someone else’s lover again, you already are a wife/husband, a parent and a member of that family you once devoted all your love for, so you need to make sure you can continue fulfilling your duty both financially and emotionally.

Technically, there might be ex-lovers, ex-friends and ex-wives/husbands but there is no ex-family. Whether you like it or not, your family will for ever be your family. However, each individual is able to have his/her own definition of what “family” means to them and who are included in that word, I have mine too, and to add one in and remove another out is not an easy task to do. It takes a certain amount of effort, feelings, memories, time, … to finally open the door and let one person step in and the same to let another out. That’s the reason why to most of the people out there, family is home and home is where the family is.



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