Every person parents differently and people are often so wrapped up in their own families that they sometimes forget what life is like on the other side of the fence. In other words, the US consists of many, many diverse and beautiful communities, each of which have their own style of raising a family.
A common misconception of the US is that each community is filled with people who, for the most part, follow the same rules when it comes to raising a child. This couldn't be further from the truth as not only is each state in the country different, but each community within each state differs drastically from the next. When it comes to the US, it truly is a melting pot.
From states that experience temperatures below zero a majority of the year to communities that are small enough to make up their own laws, it will all be explored in this article. Each walk of life is fascinating in its own way and each community has something different and unique to offer. If nothing else, it's fun to gain a glimpse into another family's life just to see what life is like for them on a daily basis. Raising a family is no easy feat and one can't help but tip their hat to these communities who do it in unique conditions.
When it comes to Alaska, outsiders usually think one of two things: Either "brr, that's cold!" or "do people actually live there?". While both of these are legitimate, this is not all Alaska has to offer. For the families living in Barrow, Alaska -- one of the least populated states in the US -- living in these conditions is just normal.
The town is inaccessible via roadways, therefore the town has its own airport through which visitors must travel. When it comes to school sports, it's not unusual for teams to fly into this small airport just to verse each other in a game. Many families are familiar with one another as depending your neighbour is quite necessary when polar bears stroll the streets among humans.
Out of all the lower states, Supai remains the least populated town. Similar to Barrow, the only way to reach Supai is via a generous hike, helicopter, or -- in complete seriousness -- a mule ride. It's located relatively close to the Grand Canyon and is home to roughly 200 people.
The tribe that lives in this town is called the Havasupai and, while their community has grown with modern advancements, they still strive to hold true to their native roots. This includes teaching their children the traditional Supai language and growing their families on the reservation, many rarely knowing a big city life.
Interestingly enough, raising a family in Angle Inlet, Minnesota, is interesting due to the fact that many kids might get to experience Canada before they're even old enough to remember it. Being the northernmost point in the state, visitors actually need to cross through Canada in order to reach the town due to its remote location... At least, if you're travelling via car.
The town is home to less than 100 residents so not only does everyone know each other, but raising a family is truly a community experience here. Children might grow up in an extremely remote location, but they'll have all the access to fresh air and country land that they want.
Marfa is possibly one of the most interesting small towns in Texas. While it's located in the deep south, it doesn't necessarily feel as though it belongs to any one section of the country. It's so remote that residents have a constant reminder of it via an empty Prada store, and there aren't many shopping locations other than that.
Families are raised quietly because the community itself has an appreciation for privacy. It's quite possible that a child may grow up with a knack for art since the area does draw many artists, many of whom remain in their own solitude. Additionally, the town has been noted for supposed extraterrestrial activity, making it a bit quirky to begin with.
It's not likely that a family will be raised in Crested Butte that doesn't love or at least tolerates winter weather. It's isolated but accessible via the town's airport which keeps it from being completely cut off from civilization.
Winter sports are part of everyday life meaning that families take to the slopes and are fairly active in their free time. With a population of roughly 2,000, families aren't living on top of each other but they most likely know each other fairly well. This town lends itself to plenty of cold weather and warm weather sports, meaning kids will be raised with physical activity in mind.
Eureka is a town that's isolated by 77 miles between it and the closest town. This is not often what one thinks when they think of Nevada, rather thinking of places such as Las Vegas. But for families living in Eureka, their lifestyles could not be more opposite to that of the big city.
Here, families raise their children with the small-town lifestyle in mind. With not much more than an elegant opera house for entertainment, families grow to be close-knit within themselves as well as with neighbors. It's a town where entertainment still consists of enjoying the outdoors and visiting grandparents and extended family on weekends.
Oregon is known for many things, but Jordan Valley is likely unheard of most of the time. This small town is just over two miles in distance but is home to rolling fields- 180-miles of it, to be exact. The population is almost non-existent with only 181 residents, all of whom have spent their entire lives there or have had generations of family there.
It's in this town where you're likely to find true cowboys, as the entertainment consists of rodeos and hunting. The older generations hold fast to their history and the old-school way of going about things, which they pass down to the younger generations, despite the increase of the digital age's popularity.
Hawaii is known most prominently as a vacation spot for many but it's also home to many. Well, perhaps not so many when it comes to the island of Kalaupapa. It's rare that tourists come to this island, which is the smallest island out of them all since they need to be invited in order to do so.
Interestingly enough, Kalaupapa began as a leprosy colony in the 1960s. Today, almost 100 of those people still remain and have since gotten married and started their own families. Island life for these families consists of awaiting supplies delivered via a barge when the waters are calm enough and not much outside contact other than that. Those they know on the island are their friends are schoolmates, unlikely to know many outsiders.
Mentone holds the title of being the second least-populated town in the US and holds true to that with its 95 residents. The thing about Mentone is that there's no grocery store, bank, and they don't even have their own hospital.
Families who live here raise their children without all the modern conveniences that many others around the country have. From this stems an appreciation for life the way it is with many of its residents opposing change. Life in Mentone is one that remains very much the same through the years as their lack of population growth lends itself to isolated family life.
Not much is heard about Nebraska, but the small town of Arthur demonstrates life in this overall welcoming state. The community is one of strength which is incorporated into family values, as the town has its own history museum as well as a church built in traditional Nebraska means -- from baled straw.
Children have an appreciation for life in the country as well as a sense of community, each person not hesitating to help out the next. Life here is laid-back, easygoing, and full of country charm, along with the occasional football game and community event, likely featuring a local singer or band.
The Ozarks has a long-standing reputation for consisting of traditional homesteading. The idea of this lifestyle dates back to the roots of early midwestern America, where families were responsible for being self-sustainable. The idea is to be responsible and meaningfully, i.e. chopping wood for the fire, planting and maintaining large gardens, having farm animals, and essentially living off the grid.
Families raise their children to be responsible and give them adequate responsibility, teaching them what it means to take care of and eventually have their own homestead. It's very much like a modern Little House on the Prairie come to life.
California doesn't seem like a state that would have its own isolated communities but Shelter Cove is very much remote from the rest of the state. The town is one of three that sit along the Lost Coast and much of it has never been developed, meaning those who live here are fairly cut off from modern conveniences.
What a family can offer their children is a quiet, remote location to learn about coastal life, including marine careers and hobbies. While they might not have a grocery store right down the road, finding parents bringing their children down to the ocean to surfcast wouldn't be unusual.
It's not all that surprising that Alaska has more than one town that's considered to be remote. Whittier is interesting in the sense that most of its residents can not only fit into one building but do actually co-habitat together. Its extreme weather conditions mean that less than 200 people stay here throughout the winter and you can find them in Begich Towers.
That means that raising a family here consists of either heading elsewhere for the winter or riding it out within a (very) close-knit community. Life is completely different when all one needs to do is walk down two floors to borrow some sugar rather than hit up the local grocery.
If you could imagine being thrown into radio silence and not being permitted to use anything that requires a cell or WiFi signal, then you can imagine what life is like in Green Bank.
This town has been mandated to participate in radio silence and police will occasionally even patrol the area to ensure that no one is using a radio device. It's an area that's free of outside signals so that proper radio research can be conducted.
But don't worry, its residents don't seem to mind it much. The families who call Green Bank their home raise children without the means of digital technology and teach them to talk to friends face-to-face rather than via the phone... Not that they can have one, anyway.
Williams is the type of town one would expect to find in the ruggedness of Arizona, surrounded by mountains and, yes, even an interactive bear park. This isn't at all strange to its residents who raise their families with an appreciation and respect for the nature around them.
Children grow up in a community that's truly tight-knit and very close, oftentimes making it difficult to tell when one family stops and another begins. While outsiders might see it as a sheltered environment, those who grow up in it consider it to be the epitome of safety within numbers and truly love it.
What is considered to be the most isolated community in America, Stehekin was once devoted Native American land. Over time, its residents changed and it's now home to roughly 106 people who live there year-round.
Its remoteness in the mountains means that families need to thoroughly prepare for harsh winters when they become even more isolated. It's the job of an entire family to set up homes for the cold season, many of which are log cabins that were built by hand.
It's here that we once again note the traditional homestead lifestyle in which many children are homeschooled and taught the value of off the grid life.
As a child, my grandmother would tell me stories of the Gullah community she often bought hand-woven baskets from on her way back from Georgia. It's here that the Gullah Geechee nation resides in the Cultural Heritage Corridor. They celebrate their history and culture through their art, which is beautiful and unique to who they are.
Using locally-grown products, they create unique items based on methods that have been passed down through generations, which they then pass onto their children. Children are also taught the importance of community, spirituality and their ancestors, and to respect the nature of the islands they live on.
The traditional way of living in Liberty County is designated by the Hutterites, a community which is strongly religion-based. They've been compared to the Amish in lifestyle but are quite different in the sense that they make use of modern technology.
Their similarities, though, do include a strict lifestyle according to religious beliefs. The main focus of the communities here is to love thy neighbor, which includes ensuring that everyone has everything in common with one another as their faith says. This is something they pass onto their children and raise them with the same faith and community values.
In stark contrast to Liberty County, Slab City is the complete opposite. One could consider this town to be somewhat off the grid but not by choice. People from all walks of life come here to practice free-spirited and a laid-back life, which includes doing whatever it is they want to do.
Whether it's finding a home or living out of a camper, this has turned into a judgment-free zone for those who reject the norms of society, something that families here hold in high esteem. The freedom to be who they want and live out their dreams here is something that's necessary when raising a family in a society free of most expected rules.
During the last census, it was determined that about 210 people still resided in the town of Maharishi Vedic City. The community is mostly Hindu but the town's history goes one step further than that -- each house within city limits was build based on the Maharishi Sthapatya Veda.
This is a design for houses that -- according to Hindu belief -- ensures protection for those residing within the homes. In addition, the town has banned all forms of pesticides and mandated and organic-only produce law. While interesting, it's just a normal way of life for the Hindu families who still live in the town to this day.