Is being a fantastic parent secretly destroying your family?

There's a common belief that your children should always come first. Not only is this false, it can even be harmful to your children. Here's why.

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  • Your children are the most important thing to you. And for good reason. There's just something special about them, something that fills a whole deep inside. Plus, they can't really take care of themselves. They rely on you for their food, laundry, help with homework, etc. If you didn't take care of them, they wouldn't even be able to exist.

  • But despite how important your children are, there's someone even more important than your children who you need to pay attention to: Your spouse.

  • Science says your spouse is important

  • Now, before you grab your pitch forks and lanterns, let me explain. There's actually a sound scientific theory behind this. It goes something like this: As the adults in the family, mom and dad have the most power and influence in the home. Because they have so much power and influence, science says that if mom and dad are doing OK, then the rest of the family will (usually) do OK, too. But if mom and dad aren't doing OK, then the family won't do OK. You'll start to see certain problems in the family because mom and dad are stressed and aren't getting along well with each other.

  • Science also says that because the children look up to mom and dad so much, the example mom and dad set for their kids as a husband and wife will be emulated by their chidlren once they grow up and have their own marriages. So if mom and dad aren't setting good examples as a husband and wife, their children will go on to emulate those poor example as a husband and wife in their own marriages as well.

  • Smooching your spouse does a child good

  • Think of it this way: you want your children to have the best chances in life, right? Well, in order for them to have the best chances, they need to be raised in a home with parents who are not only committed to them but are also committed to each other. Your children need parents who will show them what it means to have a happy, committed and loving relationship. When your children see this, they will know what a good relationship looks like. They will be able to dodge any bad relationships because they'll know what a good relationship looks like, and they'd rather have a good relationship (like the one their parents have) any day.

  • So if you really love your children, make sure to love your spouse, too. And make sure to show it often. Don't be afraid to gross out your children by giving your spouse a kiss before dinner, and don't be afraid to tell your child "no" to having a friends over because you and your spouse have a date to go on. Sure, your child will be mad at you for a while but they'll get over it. They'll even thank you later when they go on to have a marriage just like the one their parents have.

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Aaron Anderson is a therapist and Director of The Marriage and Family Clinic in Denver, CO. He is a writer, speaker and relationship expert. Checkout his blog for expert information on how to improve your relationship.

Website: http://www.TheMarriageandFamilyClinic.com

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