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Young singles
Young couples (no children)
Full nest I (pre-school children)
Full nest II (school-age children)
Full nest III (older children)
Empty nest I (still working, children left home)
Empty nest II (retired)
Solitary survivor (retired)
Figure 11.2 The Weaver and Lawton adaptation of the family life cycle model.
Source : Weaver and Lawton (2010: 164)
While the importance of recognising and understanding the FLC model
is emphasised in tourism, its limitations must also be appreciated. The
model does leave out some groups of people. Not everyone gets married;
not every marriage lasts forever; some people choose not to have (or cannot
have) children; sometimes partners die at an early age. It also assumes
people remain in a good state of health. For instance, women who have
family histories of breast or ovarian cancer, and therefore have a higher risk
of developing these diseases, often feel 'a great sense of urgency' (Werner-
Lin, 2008: 428) to enter the FLC stages. Despite attempts to recreate the FLC
model over the past few decades to include some of these groups (e.g. Gilly
& Enis, 1982; Murphy & Staples, 1979), these 'modernised' FLC models
have failed to make a significant impression.
Murphy and Staples discussed childless families and also the growing
rates of divorce and remarriage, stating the 'necessity' to recognise divorce
in the FLC (Murphy & Staples, 1979: 15). Gilly and Enis highlighted the
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