I come from a pretty messed up family, which I have learned is actually pretty normal. As a teenager, I didn't know that. My parents divorced when I was very young. My older siblings were all out of the home and for the longest time it was just me, my brother, and my mom.
Then for a time, most of my siblings were all in the same city. I think we wanted to be like the Waltons, or Leave it to Beaver. We were more like a mini version of high school. There were the "favorites" and the "black sheep" and it was as fluid as high school too.
I have struggled with my thoughts of what I expect family to be, and the reality of family. Even with my own little family of four, we struggle with the ideals versus reality. I really appreciate that television is reflecting real families more and more. It makes me feel less bad for not having that ideal family. Yet I am still sad not to be able to have that.
I will never stop striving for that ideal family and in striving, it will drive me crazy.