5 Toxic Things Eroding the Family Unit

Rush, rush, and hurry, hurry; those are the sounds of the modern family.

Long gone are the days where the family is first and an obvious priority in a busy and fast-paced world.

The modern day family is slowly being eroded by these five things. Which of these does your family struggle with?


As a family with young children, I see the writing on the wall and what is expected as the kids grow older.

Society says I am to put my children in every sport under the sun until my kids are stretched thin and stressed out, even as young as five years old.

My kids, used to having every whim and desire indulged, will end up self-centered and entitled, thinking life is purely about them.

As a parent, our weekends are to be spent running from one activity to another, with time at home kept to a minimum.

What time is left from taking kids everywhere, should be spent with constant activities, so we can prove we have an exciting life on social media.

Yet personally, I am not ok with the trend of the modern “family”.

I don’t want to look back on a lifetime together knowing I should have done something to stop the madness and to be the change I want to see in the world.

But what’s at the core of the erosion, you ask?

What can we identify as the root of problem?

These five toxic things have changed the shape of family life:

Social media and technology

While technology and modern advancement can be a blessing, it is a dangerous place for family members. Moms and dads too consumed with their phones, {we are guilty of this in our home, too!} don’t pour into the lives of their children as much as in days without these trappings.

Children also are drawn to technology, leaving less time for interaction with their family, and are more concerned with games and the latest status updates.

Social media has been a threat to the family since its inception. Personally, it drives me crazy how everyone has the perfect life on social media and the grass is always greener on someone else’s Facebook page.

Social media can erode the hearts and minds of children, with images, words, and concepts that were never meant to be for impressionable eyes.

It’s dangerous territory!  Guard your hearts, minds, and family members while using it!

Weak dads and overpowering moms

Dads used to be strong males who knew how to guard and shepherd the family.  Society today portrays all dads as weak, bumbling fools, who are lacking the most basic of sense.

Dad has been stripped of his power in the home, meanwhile, the supermom who can be all and do all for her family has been placed in charge.

Friends, this is outside of God’s design for the family.

He created the male to be strong and lead the entire family, including his wife.

While it’s not a popular concept, losing this dynamic in the family has created generations that are confused and the vicious cycle continues.

toxic things

No boundaries for the children

Why is it that parents rarely say no to children these days?

Why is it that children have become the center and focal point of the family?

This is dangerous ground!

What has emerged is a modern generation who thinks that life is about them and children who believe they are entitled to anything in life.

These children grow up and turn into adults who feel and act the same way.

This honestly makes me afraid for the future!

Busy schedules

Busy schedules are now worn like badges of honor, with the social media pictures to prove it!

These days, families don’t have as many opportunities to bond and connect because of busyness.

Parents, don’t be afraid of limiting your child’s activities and carving out quality time with just your family.

You will not regret the bond that forms because of it!

Removing God from the center of the family

Taking God out of the family is the most detrimental of all!

Without God at the center, there is no focus, no backbone, no conviction within the family.

Without God it’s easy to let problems get out of hand until one member wants to throw in the towel.

Without God there’s no compass, no direction for the family.

Friends, our family units are on the verge of being extinct and it’s time to take drastic measures to guard the precious time and fleeting moments we have together.

But, is it possible to take a stand for the family unit and make a difference in the community around us?

Can change really happen in a poisoned world, where the idea of the strong, old-fashioned family unit is somehow wrong and not politically correct?

I say yes.

I say that the strengthening of one family unit can spark an initiative in a community, and together we can repair the the damage the modern family has undergone in the past 65 years.

Join me on a campaign, the Strong Family Project {#strongfamilyproject}, to encourage families to reconnect, re-prioritize, and revitalize life at home.

May this on-going series help families build a strong foundation and a lifetime of wonderful memories!

Stay connected to this inspiring series in the following ways:

Join the Strong Family Project Facebook Group for encouragement and support for all things family.  You’ll love our community and the chance to interact with families in the same season of life

Grab your free Strong Family Printable pack here!

This exclusive subscriber freebie will be filled with printables to help you enjoy your family and cement your bond forever.

How do you help your family connect and build strong roots?  Do you agree that these things are toxic to a family?  Do you have anything to add to the list?


  1. Sarah you made some really good points thanks for sharing found you over at Making Memories Monday 🙂

  2. I definitely agree that over-scheduling is a problem for many families. Our kiddos make it a goal to sit down as a family for dinner each evening. They also facetime for tuck ins with they have to travel for business. Little ways to connect and keep the family strong.

    1. I love the idea of Facetime tuck ins! What a fabulous idea! That’s a great example of social media at its best.

  3. I think that when we put God at the center, the rest kind of starts to take care of itself. And I work on social media, so I am having to learn to shut it down and walk away and I won’t get fired, but it is good for her to go play by herself. It is good for her to realize she isn’t dependent on me or a screen to entertain her sometimes. It is good for my daughter to watch me read a book or take time to exercise. She is certainly the focus of our home in many ways, but only after serving God and that is where we all belong.

    1. Absolutely! I love your great input here! I also do a lot of work on social media, and balance really is the key. We obviously live in a modern world and can’t escape, but prioritizing is key. Great point about your daughter learning independence and seeing you do positive things, such as seeing you exercise! Thanks for your words of wisdom!

  4. Wow!This is so true. Those 5 things are extremely toxic for our families. My hubby and I make it a point to limit social media and technology in front of the girls. We also make God our main priority.

    1. We are working on the social media in our house. It’s so easy to look over and quickly check an email without realizing that I’ve stopped playing playing with my kids or have become distracted. I’ve started putting my phone in the cabinet while my kids are awake. I can still hear it, but it’s out of my line of vision.

  5. Great post Sarah Ann! I am so curious about #strongfamilyproject. I would love more info 🙂

    1. Absolutely, Sammi! I’ll be sending out some information soon and would love for you to be a part!

  6. Yes! Thank you! I find so much resistance from others at my attempt to reconnect with my family – mainly because I homeschool, so they don’t understand why we need more time at home… Why I don’t volunteer for more things. But yes! I’m with you 100% and would love to take part in your #strongfamily project!

    1. You are so right, Maria! It’s not a popular concept, but one that makes a difference in the life of the family unit. I’m so glad you’ll be joining us for the #strongfamilyproject!

  7. Keeping God in the middle of the family is so key! And the “busy” schedule – it’s challenging but so important to get “rest” and “down” time – as a family, too!!! Very informative post!

  8. Very well indeed! I agree! So many things in our culture are breaking down the family unit. We wouldn’t have enough room to add more. i agree, social media, cell phones, texting, it all puts the family at a distance with one another. Saying NO to our children, wholeheartedly agree, a lost in the parenting role

    1. Yes! While I personally know these things aren’t always easy, it’s so important for the family to make each other a priority.

  9. Totally agree with you on all these points. Keeping God at the center needs to be our number one priority for our families and then everything else should flow from that. If we allow God to pour his love into us it will overflow into our family lives.
    I really have a love/hate relationship with technology. I love it because I can do things from home that never used to be possible. I hate it because I can get too into it and ignore my family.
    Thanks for pointing out these areas. Sharing this post with other mommas!

  10. Sarah,
    Family in it’s purest and truest form is definitely under attack and these five points are spot on. Thank you for being bold and sharing. I need to rein in my social media struggle and remember to put the phone down. I have heard several talk about setting specific and set hours of “no technology time” and have been trying to do that from the time my kids get home from school until after dinner. It’s tough as a blogger but the benefits far outweigh the cost. Glad to have found you through Holley Gerth today! Be blessed!

    1. I understand, Brandi! I have to admit that I struggle with this. The comments and email seem to always roll in, and I want to stop and take care of it right away.

  11. Great post! I agree with all of these. I also think that it’s dangerous when parents “expect” their children to be enemies or for their teenagers to hate them – kids rarely disappoint us when we act as if we expect something!

    1. Oh yes! I find that when I have those preconceived notions about my children, they usually do not disappoint!

  12. I LOVE this post, Sarah Ann. As a homeschooling family with both parents working from home, family time is something we deem very important. I can honestly say that our best family memories are the ones we build at home around the kitchen table. Enjoying our meals together, learning with and from one another, reading the Bible together, playing games, etc. are the things we think of more than the “required” activities.

    This is an excellent reminder that activity doesn’t always mean successful.

    1. I LOVE it, Heather! I think guarding your family time is a perfect idea and pray that we can do the same when my kids are a little older. God bless your sweet family!

  13. Hello!

    Thank you for sharing this, I don’t have children yet but I agree that I see this in other’s lives and some of these points even in my marriage at times.

    Great to connect! I look forward to future posts! #RaRaLinkup!

    1. Thank you, Bethany! It’s wonderful to meet you and connect! Blessings!

  14. Hi Sarah, i read this post and you won’t believe it I got into a conversation with my hubby about this post.
    We learnt a lot. Thank you.
    God Bless and Happy Easter to you.

    1. Wonderful! That makes me so excited that this post is opening the lines of communication in your house! Keep it up!

  15. Yes, life is to rushed. So many things jam packed into our days. When is there time to just “be”. I find myself asking that questions a lot. Dinner time at our house is family time. We all sit down at the table to talk about our day, share a meal and catch up. Afterwards we let the kids pick a show we can all watch together. Weekends are a challenge for us but we’re working on it. Praying for more family down time. Thanks for putting an emphasis on family time.

    1. We are works in progress, too! It’s so funny how God convicts me through my own words!

  16. We have dinner together every night as a family. We also limit each child to one sports activity at a time and the majority of the activity has to be in our town (so they don’t play hockey because the nearest rink is 25 minutes away). That may sound harsh to some, but with 4 kids I don’t want to spend most of my time driving them all over the place for activities. If we didn’t have these rules, that’s exactly what my husband and I would be doing. (Stopping by from IBN Promo FB Group.)

    1. I love the idea of limiting sports and think it’s a blessing to a family of any size! We have to take drastic measures to guard our families!

  17. Couldn’t agree with you more! Sharing this on my Facebook page!

    1. Thank you, Kendra! It’s so nice to meet another like-minded blogger!

  18. Sarah, you make some very good points!
    Sharing this one.
    Thanks for posting.

    1. Thank you for sharing, Donna! May we all learn to protect our family a little more!

  19. The really scary thing is how long all of this has been eroding away, slowly. I think if it had been more abrupt, these changes, people would have taken more notice and perhaps kept things from drifting as far as they have. I hope messages like this one can continue to get spread. Together we can accomplish great things. Sharing!

  20. These are very good, and I think they all tie in together. Often things like social media, technology, and busy schedules are replacing God as the family’s center.

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