6 Tips To A Happy Home Ala The Simpsons
While the delightfully yellow animated family of The Simpsons may seem an unlikely inspiration for family harmony, they get many things right. Here are six ways that The Simpsons can teach us about living together as a family.
Marriage: Complete Dependence
As illustrated in episode 22, season 5, the secret to a happy marriage is the complete co-dependence of the couple. While this is certainly exaggerated in this episode, with Homer nearly starving to death without Marge for a few hours, there is some truth in the central lesson. Both people in the marriage need to complement each other and need one another. Try this at home: observe something that your partner does that you really need. Show an appreciation for that the next chance you get.
Children: If Marriage Is A Coffin, Children Are The Nails
As Homer laments, “Aw, I have three kids and no money. Why can’t I have no kids and three money?” While Homer and Marge have their share of struggles in parenting young Bart, Lisa, and Maggie Simpsons, they always show love and care in the resolution of the conflicts. Take-away: next time one of your offspring is getting your goat, give ’em a hug anyway.
Employment: I Deserve This!
While Homer isn’t exactly presented as a real go-getter, he is able to be gainfully employed and support his family. In fact, he left his dream job at the Bowl-A-Rama to pursue a job at the Nuclear Power Plant when he learned that he was going to be a father. Tip: Think about all that your family has accomplished and focus on the wins, not the losses. Using positive self-talk can support stress management and lead to a happier family life.
Extended Family: It Takes A Village
Between Patty & Selma, and Grandpa Simpson (Abe), it seems as thought the relations of the Simpsons aren’t a really great addition. However, negotiating life with the extended family often requires The Simpson family to demonstrate loyalty and compassion and extend this love. Try this: Think of a relative that your family finds difficult (it may not be hard). Now brainstorm a way to be kind to them as a family.
Love: It May Be Expressed In Weird Ways
Love can be shown in myriad ways in families. Sometimes it comes in the form of teasing, such as in the episode “Lisa the Vegetarian.” Lisa was extremely frustrated with how she was being treated by her family but she realized that they loved her in the end. At home tip: When your family is embarrassing or irritating you, ask yourself,”is this one of the ways they show love?” It might or might not be, but its worth asking before getting upset.
Money: It Isn’t the Key to Happiness
This is shown throughout the Simpsons. The Simpson family is constantly mired in financial struggle but find happiness in their family and what they do have. Mr. Burns, however, has enormous wealth but is unfulfilled. While money can bring some comfort, it certainly isn’t the the answer.