reply to these discussion post. initial Discussion question is What is a definition of family that encompasses the different family structures prevalent today? Discuss the importance of acknowledging nontraditional family structures. Explain how family systems theory can be used to better understand the interactions of a modern family (traditional or nontraditional). When posting on the forum your responses to your peers’ posts must include the items listed below: 1. First, agree or disagree with what your peer stated. 2. Then, add additional content. 3. End with an open-ended follow-up question. 4. Include one reference with in-text citation. DQ responses to your peers should include a minimum of 1 reference and in-text citation.

1. The definition that encompasses different family structures today would be ,”family of choice.” Understanding the family’s structure and related health concepts allows the nurse to assess the family’s unique characteristics and identify problem areas (Green, 2018). Today’s family structure is a wide verity of who is in the unit. As clinicians it is vital that nurse is not biased or judgmental with the family unit. The number one goal is to focus on health promotion and creating a positive patient outcome for the patient or the family unit as a whole no matter the makeup of the family unit. The family systems theory includes one family subsystem can influence the other family subsystem and can have positive or negative impacts on the patient or family unit based on one subfamily units’ decisions. “Nurses must utilize the power of advocacy in order to identify and address patients’ specific needs” (Health promotion. 2018). IF the family is traditional or nontraditional it does not matter as the clinician. The clinician or nurse should be assessing and identifying the needs of the family unit to help support and promote a health promotion or education with the resources available to promote a positive or influential outcome. HAve you encountered a difficult situation with a traditional or nontraditional family with needing all family parties to agree to assist the family unit for a healthier lifestyle such as addiction?

Green, S. (2018). Understanding Families and Health Promotion. Health Promotion: Health & Wellness Across the Continuum.

Health Promotion: Health & Wellness Across the Continuum. (2018). [E-book]. Grand Canyon University. Retrieved August 1, 2022, from


2. The definition that most accurately depicts the family structures that are prevalent today is family of choice. Green (2018) defines family of choice as the people chosen by an individual to care, love, and trust rather than the family of origin. It is imperative that we acknowledge non-traditional family structures, now more than ever due to the increasing prevalence. This accounts for the family of origin and everything in between such as, pets, aunts, uncles, friends, and LGTBQ+. 

The family systems theory is an effective tool to assist healthcare professionals in understanding various interactions of the modern family. According to Barnes et al., (2020) each member of the family exerts a profound impact on the choices of another in the family, the consequences of which can be carried through generations. Moreover, the family as a unit has a significant impact on the health and wellness of the individual. Therefore, whether traditional or non-traditional it is important to identify potential behaviors that can negatively impact the health of the entire unit whilst, encouraging/supporting those healthy or positive behaviors. 


Barnes, M. D., Hanson, C. L., Novilla, L. B., Magnusson, B. M., Crandall, A. C., & Bradford, G. (2020). Family-centered health promotion: Perspectives for engaging families and achieving better health outcomes. Inquiry: A Journal of Medical Care Organization, Provision and Financing, 57.

Green, S. Z. (2018). Understanding families and health promotions. In Grand Canyon University (Ed.) Dynamics in nursing: Art& science of professional practice


3. Today we see families that are blended, single parent families and extended families. Family is described as a group of individuals that are bound together by certain ties. The Family System Theory explains that understanding a family structure cannot be done by evaluating just the individual but the whole family process must be taken into account. Different types of assessment should be taken into consideration such as the structural, functional and developmental process.

It is important to acknowledge nontraditional family structures because every household is run differently. Not all household have just 2 parents and their offspring. Some households have extended families living with them, some have no children or adopted children. Some even just have friends living in the household and run it as a family. By acknowledging how the household is run outcomes in patient teaching will have a better success rate


Family systems theory. (2022). Science Direct. Retrieved December 7, 2022, from

Green, S. (2018). Understanding Families and Health Promotion. Health Promotion: Health & Wellness Across the Continuum.


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