Opinion: Families should eat together as often as possible

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Opinion Writing No. 7 

By Joseph Phelan

It is commonplace. A parent makes dinner. A son comes home from football at 5:30 and helps himself. A daughter finishes dance at 7 and then eats her meal. The other parent enters home after a long day and eats in front of the television. Everyone eats just not together.

Families should eat together as often as possible.

Things come up; that’s just life. Practice, work and other various time commitment issues come into play—but eating together gives families a strong foundation that helps steady relationships within the households, and that’s important.

It also gives families a way to get rid of the daily distractions that the modern-day presents. Today’s world demands a lot from parents. Some parents work two jobs—which does not include the work that raising children requires.

Sometimes finding time for family presents a challenge, but it should never be discredited or taken for granted.

Family is too imperative to be overlooked. Family plays a crucial role through a person’s life, but especially during childhood. The development of a child’s personality will be shaped partially at a dining room table.

Yes, children learn in school from their friends and teachers, and throughout the summer months. But family dinners present an opportunistic time to really help children grow into their own person. Nothing screams building a personality quite like bonding over a well-prepared meal—the chance for real conversation about the day’s events.

It’s easy really. Find time to make it happen. It doesn’t have to be an hour. Fifteen minutes will work. Any amount of time spent with family is time well spent.

There is always a time and place for everything. Hanging out with friends, playing sports, going to work or going to school have certain designated times.

Dinner, however, should be reserved for family time. 

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