In this lesson, we will discuss relationships as a basic human need by looking at:
The parties in a conflict are always part of some sort of relationship, or a group of two or more that shares a sense of interdependence formed around:
Because we are all social beings, we have an inherent need to relate to others; it's in our very genetic code that we need to live in groups in order to survive in nature.
These groups could be:
In these groups, our shared experiences, goals, and values are what bind us together, even on a national level.
As Americans, we feel that we have a relationship with our fellow citizens that manifests itself within our communities, with our friends, and of course with our families.
We have different kinds of relationships, but they all develop from ongoing shared experiences: When in school, we may meet friends and form relationships with them; if we’re raising children, we might form relationships with other families who have children; at work, we form relationships with the people we're collaborating on projects with.
All the different places we go in our lives, from community clubs to places of worship, bring us into contact with people with whom we form relationships.
Out of these relationships then comes an interdependence, or a state in which each member of a relationship is mutually dependent on the others.
This reliance and responsibility can be:
We come to feel a sense of mutual responsibility for one another; this sense of interdependence is really based on the positive relationships we have with one another.
The more experiences we share together, or the more long-term the relationship is, the more we experience a sense of belonging together. We feel that we have to care for one another, as our mutual interests are in each other's welfare and needs.
When there's been a natural disaster or community tragedy, people bind together as citizens to help one another work through it.
Of course we also see it very close to home in our own families. We say we'd do anything to protect our families, and we become dependent on people in the community, such as members of the police and fire departments, to help protect us as well.
Thus these dependencies form within:
The more shared experiences we have, the more we're willing to go to bat for one another, or to really seek to help someone meet his or her welfare and needs.
In some cases, this may mean we'll go to war to protect our country because we feel a strong need to defend the relationship we have with our fellow citizens, and the right to live in this country.
On a larger level, we feel interdependence as the need to protect these mutual interests, but we certainly also feel it on a personal level in the need to protect our families.
Relationships are key to who we are in Maslow's hierarchy of needs, as they fall right into the category of love and belonging. We all have a very strong need to feel connected to one another; these connections are based on the interdependence we feel with one another, whether it be on a very close level (familial) or on a larger scale (societal).
In this lesson, you learned the importance of relationships as a basic human need. We form relationships with our families, friends, and communities through a sense of shared experiences and values.
You now understand that the more shared experiences we have in a relationship, the more we feel a sense of interdependence that strengthens the relationship and manifests itself in the need to protect the interests of the other members of the relationship.
Source: Adapted from Sophia tutorial by Marlene Johnson.
Groups of two or more that share a sense of interdependence formed around common goals, values, and shared experiences.
A state in which each member of a relationship is mutually dependent on the others (e.g. emotionally, economically, ecologically and/or morally reliant on and responsible to each other).