A Conflict and Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) expert, Dr Kojo Hopeson has urged families to capitalise on the Christmas season to settle all pending disputes and petty disagreements that have the potential to break homes.
According to him, remembering the birth of Jesus was a signal of reconciliation hence the need for families to reflect on the numerous advantages of family bonding in order to settle family conflicts.
“The Christmas period is a season for remembering the birth of Jesus Christ, more importantly, it is the most suitable period for families who are in conflict to capitalise on that to extend a hand of reconciliation to each other”, he said.
He made this call in an interview with the Daily Graphic.
He noted that parents who were in conflict could resolve their differences by scheduling a more conducive time and choosing a location that was devoid of distraction to settle their differences.
“Parents especially should mark the period with the objective that they want to enter the next year without any acrimony”, he added.
Mr. Hopeson observed that exercises such as these will ensure that the next generation appreciated how important family bonding was to building a unified family.
He further charged aggrieved individuals within the family to take personal initiatives regardless of who was at fault to settle their differences with the other party.
Dr Hopeson again noted that with the advent of the COVID-19, families should celebrate the season with gratitude, adding that “The year has not been an easy year, when we only want to look at it from the negative point alone, we may not have more reasons to be happy.
“Although there may be negative reasons, there are more positives because aside from spending time and bonding with our families, the pandemic has exposed us to confront our weaknesses and helped us to readjust our approach to everyone within the family”, he said.
He observed that in most homes, parents spent a significant amount of their time at work rather than with their children hence the COVID-19 presented an opportunity for such parents to bond with their families and get to know each other more.
“In some places, parents are used to prioritising economic gains above their families but for COVID-19 most people have realised that none of these really matters as compared to family bonding and getting to know each other better as a family”, he said.
Dr Hopeson noted that the COVID-19 had also led to a paradigm shift in how people went about their daily activities and had also unearthed certain hidden potentials and talents in people as a result of the lockdown.
“So I think at this time, families will begin to appreciate their being together during the period and remind themselves of the bond and greatness of God (which) should rather be deeply appreciated”, he stated.