For example, after World War II, both the marriage and divorce rates spiked because those returning from war were marrying women they came back to and also, some women who had met other men during the war divorced their returning husbands in order to marry new men.
The conflict theorist perspective on marriage and family is that family mainly revolves around men (patriarchal, patrilineal). They believe that it is the woman's job to support the men in family and that men work outside to provide and women work in the home. This relates to their overall sociological perspectives because they believe that much of the operational aspects of family derive from gender conflict between men and women.
The functionalist perspective on family is basically that family is an overall support system. They believe that the role of family in terms of children is to guide them and that the family is where all members may feel accepted and loved unconditionally. Family serves as an economic source, establishing a social status, and socialization.
The traditional American family can be known also as the nuclear family. This archetype consists of a male parent and female parent, married, with children of their own. A perfect model of this family would be the family of the 1950 sitcom 'Leave it to Beaver', which almost created the definition of the all American family. The family had a father, who was the main provider for the family, and a mother, who took care of the home and the children, and included two semi-well behaved sons.
Americans tend to hold very strong importance with marriage and family. From birth, Americans are taught that they will one day find the love of their life, get married, have children and raise them and die with their partner. It is uncommon to break from this mold because, ultimately, it is based on the natural human desire to procreate. However, Americans base it more on desire and emotion than other cultures, who marry and have children for more practical purposes.
Children raised by gay parents will probably be more accepting of other sexualities also, although being gay is not genetic, because homosexuality is not a genetic trait. Also, women raised in more patriarchal families may assume the role of the doting mother, and their families will be more male based.
Children are greatly impacted by their family life, especially by the type of family they grew up in. For example, it has been proven that children of divorced parents are more likely to be more reluctant towards the idea of marriage and it is more probable that they will marry at a later age, if at all.