Frequently Asked Questions
What is FamilyeJournal?
FamilyeJournal is an interactive website designed to facilitate communication between parents and kids, families of adult children, groups of friends, couples, co-workers, etc. The main goal is to help families members share and connect on a deeper level. We'll ask the questions and all you need to do is answer and read answers. Regularly communicating using the eJournal is a way to nurture your relationships in just a few minutes a day.
How did you get the idea for a familyejournal?
Kevin Strauss conceived the FamilyeJournal idea after watching an episode of Boston Public on the Fox Television Network. One story line focused on the poor communication between the principal and his daughter. Mr. Strauss was extremely frustrated by the lack of communication and realized it affects our society. His enthusiasm for the Internet and email provided him with the solution. Originally FEJ was to be a Personal Data Assistant (PDA) application but he soon realized that creating FEJ as a website would have further reaching potential with the hope of evolving into a PDA application when they become more commonly used.
In more recent years, smart phones and tablet devices, which run Apps, have become mainstream around the world. In the future, we hope to make a FamilyeJournal App available for download.
Who is FEJ intended for?
FEJ is intended for any family seeking to improve their communication and connection. It is not intended to replace professional counseling or therapy but may be used in conjunction with such treatment. In that case, we do suggest seeking the professional's advice before using FEJ.
How old do you have to be to use FEJ?
FEJ is intended to be used by family members who are 10 years of age or older but we have received feedback that some 7 year olds are comfortable using FEJ. FEJ has also been found to be very effective for families with adult children. In the future, we may offer a slightly modified version so that younger members may participate especially since some 2-3 year old children are using smartphones and tablets.
Does it work?
You bet it does! Please visit our Testimonials page to see what other users have said. If you prefer more objective data, please read the peer-reviewed published research article that shows 83% of students using FamilyeJournal reported it improved their relationships.
Does FamilyeJournal provide counseling?
FamilyeJournal does not provide counseling in any way. Please see our Links page for possible professional help or contact your physician.
How is FamilyeJournal different than Facebook and other social media?
FamilyeJournal is different than social media in two distinct ways. 1) FEJ provides guided communication in that we provide a database of questions that each family member can then answer so everyone is on the same page. In social media, what you post and share is "free-form" and could cover infinite topics. FEJ helps focus the sharing. 2) FEJ facilitates two-way sharing. Each question is posed to each family member so when questions are answered and read, the information exchange is complete. In social media, someone may "like" or "comment" but rarely does a conversation ensue and move beyond the surface.
How does it work?
FEJ works by family member participation. When family members complete their eJournal and other family membersread the answers communication is occurring. The more a family communicates, the more the family connects.
Isn’t FEJ just like email?
FEJ is not email. FEJ offers guided communication while email relies on the free form of the author. By asking questions, FEJ stimulates a user to think and recognize his or her thoughts and feelings and provides a place to express them. Our staff has designed questions to help you "open up" to your family.
How much does FEJ cost?
Your entire family can join for $229/12-weeks. All memberships include a 10-day 100% money back guarantee.
How can I cancel my subscription?
The Family Leader has complete control of their account and can Add/Remove Family Members and Cancel their entire family account at any time. To permanently delete an entire family's account takes just 3 clicks... so be careful!
How can I be a part of FamilyeJournal?
Families can join FEJ by simply registering and paying the one-time fee. A Family Leader will register and the add family members. Each family member will be given a temporary password which they can modify once they login to the site.
How long has the website been "live"?
FEJ has been able to accept members since January 1, 2003 and has representation from nearly all 50 states and more than 40 countries. In late 2012, FEJ began a mission to expand membership especially with the universal acceptance of social media.
Is my family's information safe?
How secure is the website when I am using it?
Each user has their unique email address and password and all members must login to gain access to their family’s area. All information collected during registration is performed in a secure SSL (Secure Socket Layer) environment.
What information is collected?
Since privacy is critical to FEJ's success, the only information we require for a family member to register is a first name and an email address. We do not require the collection of last names, phone numbers, addresses or financial information which will help to ensure privacy especially if our system is compromised.
How do I turn off the email reminders and notifications?
Each user has the ability to turn on/off all daily email reminders and eJournal notifications. From the Dashboard, simply click the link on the left to "Update My Info.". Then, scroll down to "Reminders" and check/uncheck the boxes of your choosing. Finally, click the green "Update" button.
How are all of the eJournal answers stored?
All eJournals are stored on our password protected server. Just like any other website (e.g. Amazon, Yelp, Facebook, LinkedIn, etc.), any interaction a user has requires an information exchange and storage.
How To Use It:
How do I get my children to use FamilyeJournal?
FamilyeJournal will work best if it is used voluntarily. We suggest your family establish some guidelines for FEJ use. We offer suggested Tips for Use and Suggested House Rules that your family might consider. Ultimately, asking your teen rather than telling them to use FEJ should help. One might even use the argument that by communicating using FEJ will, at least, help the family stay “in touch” especially if verbal communication has really degraded.
Recently, one of our members suggested establishing an agreement with a child/teen wherein the parent(s) agree not to 'nag' for 2-3 weeks if everyone agrees to use the eJournal regularly. The goal here is that in just a few weeks the family dynamic could very likely change for the better.
How much time will FEJ take each day?
Our data shows users spend about 5 minutes per day to answer the 4 questions in theie eJournal and read your family members' answers.
How often should I use FEJ?
Ideally, family members will use FEJ every day. Realistically, if each family member completes an eJournal 3-5 times per week, then families should be maintaining a high level of valuable communication.
How much should I share?
The amount of information you share is up to you. We expect that sharing will increase over time as you become more comfortable communicating with your family this way and as a new level of rapport and trust is established between family members.
What if I find out something really bad?
Using FEJ could bring to light some very difficult and serious topics. If such a topic is initiated on FEJ, we strongly encourage users to take their time and think about the issue. If time permits, we encourage users to continue communicating on the topic using FEJ. If users feel comfortable, discussing the topic face-to-face may be more appropriate. In that case, following the typical guidelines for face-to-face communication should be used. For example, discussing the topic at an appropriate time and setting and using a calm voice. If the issue is extremely serious or life-threatening, it may be appropriate to contact professional help immediately.
What if I need more help than what FEJ can offer?
If families are sharing openly and honestly the potential for bringing to light some very serious issues may become more likely. If an issue is raised that you are not sure how to handle we strongly suggest you seek professional help.
What if I add a new family member later on or a family member falls behind?
Family relationships are dynamic so FEJ tries to be flexible. We have created a "Catch Up" feature whereby the Family Leader can choose which eJournal # the new member will begin. Similarly, if a family member has fallen behind, the leader can bring that member back up and current with other family members. In both cases, the member can edit/change past eJournals.