Who are you? What have you become? Throughout our lives, we are enmeshed in a network of social relationships that influence us, for better or for worse. Most of our relationships have some value to us, else we would not be in them. They constitute social capital—a form of wealth every bit as valuable as financial or human capital.
Family relationships are the first a person experiences in life. Children are nurtured, taught, and socialized in the family, and from there learn to relate to others and participate in the broader society. A stable family offers the emotional security a child needs for healthy development. As Princeton University sociologist Sara McLanahan has noted:
If we were asked to design a system for making…
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