What defines a "family” to you?

I love having a blog. It gives you an outlet to let out any frustrations that you have going on. I've been having some family issues the past few days. It made me think—what truly defines a family? You have your immediate family (father, mother, sister, brother), then the extended family (aunts, cousins, etc). Is it me or do you feel like sometimes your friends are there for you more than your family? I love my family with all my heart. My mother, father, brothers, my uncles and some cousins I would go through the fire for. Then there's other family members that make me just shake my head. For the life of me I don't understand why they do the things they do or act the way they act. It makes you really think about the phrase, "blood is thicker than water,” because in a lot of cases the water seems to have a lot more leverage. For the most part, you tend to feel there is some type of loyalty with family, but all have you to do is pick up a tabloid to see how every other week "so-called” families are selling each other out.

Is there a point where you totally cut certain family members off? Or do you just keep dealing with nonsense in the name of family? I know some families who live down the street from each other and don't speak at all. Sad, but true. The way I was raised I was taught to always be there for my family no matter what and for the most part that will never change. However, in order to keep a piece of mind you have to let certain people go, unfortunately sometimes that can include family.

"Blood may be thicker then water, but you need water to survive" -Anonymous

*That photo is of me and my brother Leroy when I was 3 and he was 5. He's always protected me from day one, him and my oldest brother Corey. I love you both!