for me, this article rings true to the heart of my own philosophy of marriage with kids.
i’ve felt this way ever since i’ve become a parent but never fully understand why – this guy basically helped by putting all my thoughts and beliefs into words.
now, i will admit that the last segment of the article wasn’t something i truly bought. only because his answer was a bit too simplistic. having said that, it’s an interview – editing always makes everything seem more on the simplistic side.
anyway – the basic principle is that by putting your spouse first, you build a stronger foundation which causes less anxiety/stress for the kids. there’s still tension but the tension is ‘normal’ tension. everyday tension. after all, arguing in front our kids is not a bad thing. it’s reality – everyday reality. assuming it’s not violent always on-going, our kids need to know that yes, mommy and daddy are human and yes, just slike any normal and healthy relationship out there, we will argue.
secondly, i agree with the backlash of ‘over-parenting’. here’s a segment of this article:
It’s been said that the best thing you can do for your kids is love your partner. Does it come down to that?
I think it does. When we put our marriage first and our children second, everybody wins. The reason is children and their demands seem urgent whereas our marriages are important but not urgent, so we neglect to feed and water them and they die so slowly and quietly we don’t even realize there’s a problem until we look up five years later and we’re living like roommates. That’s when couples get divorced or have an affair. The neglected marriage creates tension in the household and children soak up that tension and act out or get sick.
What advice would you give a couple expecting their first child?
I would say it’s a myth that the more attention you give your kids the better they’ll turn out. And No. 2, arguing is not what kills a marriage, it’s when we avoid and dodge and don’t deal with each other that slowly, sneakily kills it.
Are you talking about what our parents did in the days before families became child-centred?
I don’t like to appeal to that 1950s idyllic image because I don’t know how true that was. I do think the previous generation did a better job of loving their spouse first and their children second. Children gain a tremendous amount of self-reliance and independence if they don’t have a parent standing over them acting as their entertainment director and referee and running interference with any problems that come along.
i’m not saying that we should always neglect our children but i do think that these days, parents are expected to perform over and beyond the nature of things. we are expected to be super-parents who are our children’s doctor, teacher, psychologist and while we’re so busy trying to do all this, we neglect the one area that is what keeps the household a strong unit – our marriage.
of course, i’ve been guilty of this. but ever since i’ve started to put my marriage first, parenting itself became easier.
the rest of the article: http://www.parentcentral.ca/parent/family%20health/article/843720–put-marriage-ahead-of-your-kids