Seven Types of Family Stories
Many family stories revolve around seven basic plots. It is worthwhile for families to reach back into their individual and collective memories to retrieve stories of all seven kinds to pass on to the children.
Type 1. Overcoming the monster – living through natural disasters, discrimination, war, etc.
Type 2. Quests – leaving your comfort zone in search of something
Type 3. Voyage and return – returning to normal life after being terribly hurt or injured
Type 4. Rages to riches, riches to rags – Financial successes, financial failures
Type 5. Tragedies – terrible things that happen in every family, with no upside
Type 6. Comedies – stories that make you laugh (misunderstandings, coincidences, etc.)
Type 7. Rebirth – big emotional and/or mental struggles that lead to new take on life
Source: Laird Norton Wealth Management, “How Family Stories Can Strengthen and Unite,” an interview with Marshall P. Duke, Ph.D., 2017