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Heart & Home: What is a normal family?

Newschannel 3 explores the changing face of the family, Wednesday at 11 p.m. (WWMT Graphics/Denise Schermerhorn)

For decades in the United States the nuclear family dominated the social norm: mother, father and two to three children. In 1960, data from the U.S. census shows that 73 percent of children lived with two heterosexual parents in their first marriage. Recent data shows the numbers differently.

Other family structures have become increasingly more common, such as single parents, second or third marriages, homosexual couples, and grandparents raising grandchildren. Jake Wykrent, a single dad in Kalamazoo raising his triplet 4-year-olds, said you have to get used to the strange looks and questions about your family.

"You can look at data. You can look at statistics," Wykrent said. "You know they're growing up with the same morals and the same upbringing that I would have brought them up with if we were in a man and woman household or, you know, woman-woman, male-male, grandma, aunt, whoever."

In a Newschannel 3 special report Wednesday at 11 p.m., reporter Jason Puhr breaks down the numbers and delves into the normal the normal family is, or isn't, today.


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