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checkbox sets and relationships


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Here's the structure of my problem:


I've got a "Parent" table, a "Child" table, and a "ParentChildRelationship" table relating multiple child records to individual parent records through ParentID and ChildID fields.


Child::Attributes is a checkbox set with 26 values from a value list: A,B,C...Z


I like the user interface of the checkbox set, but it seems to me to function like a repeating field. I want to dump all the checked values for Child::Attributes into a searchable field Parent::AllChildrensAttributes and cull out duplicates, so that if Parent 3056 is related to Child 9182 (with Child::Attributes values of A,B,G,T) and Child 4735 (with Child::Attributes values of A,B,H,Z), then Parent 3056's AllChildrensAttributes field will contain the text "A, B, G, H, T, Z" in a comma delineated list, just like that.


Can anyone suggest a way to do this? I thought about creating 26 fields in the Child table called A, B, C, etc, and having them each be check box sets with a value list that only has one value of "1" and then having Parent::AllChildrensAttributes be a calculation field with a mess of Case statements, but I would love a cleaner solution.

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