When you walk into a book store, you’ll see 100 different sections of books from baking to biographies. Within those sections, you’ll often find separate marriage and parenting sections filled with advice for how to have a harmonious and happy marriage and how to set your kids up for success.
I’d like to argue that either of these noble goals aren’t as isolated as Barnes and Noble may make them appear. A marriage, whether rocky or solid, will have a direct and lasting impact on the children within the household.
Let’s break down a few of the reasons why a strong marriage is important and how creating a strong marriage foundation can affect your kids in positive ways.
Model conflict resolution
It often goes two ways. Couples (or individuals) err on the side of being overly passive to the point of never fully communicating their expectations or feelings or couples (or individuals) err on the side of diving head head first into confrontation, fully expressing their own feelings without much consideration for their spouse’s.
Healthy conflict resolution is a balance of both. A balance of bringing up the issue in a timely manner but in a way that won’t embarrass your spouse or cause them to feel more defensive than they would have in public. A balance of sharing your expectations while understanding that others have strengths than us. A balance of wanting to find a solution to the problem while checking in with your spouse’s feelings and making sure their feelings and your connection is in tact.
It’s easy to err on the side of being overly passive or overly confrontational, but the best way to resolve a conflict is to find the balance between the two. It’s a tough one to get right, especially when emotions on each side are running high.
A strong marriage is built on an understanding that you and your partner are in it for the long haul. This means that the decisions you make are for the greater good of your relationship and your family, even if it means sacrificing something that you want or need. Selflessness is an important part of any healthy relationship and a great way to model this to your children.
When they see you and your partner making decisions based on what is best for the family, they develop a sense of empathy and understanding that carries over into their own lives. This is especially important in a world where we are often driven by our own desires and wants. Showing your children that there is more to life than just themselves can have a lasting impact on how they view the world.
It is also important to model selflessness in other areas of parenting, such as sharing responsibilities and making sure that everyone in the family is taken care of. This requires a level of sacrifice and patience, but it is a valuable lesson for children to learn. When they see that their parents are willing to make sacrifices for the benefit of the family, it helps them to understand that selflessness is an important part of strong relationships.
Model communication skills
I babysat for a couple once who seems to always be on different pages. Even as a young teenager, I thought to myself, “I need to have better communication than this when I’m married.”
Effective communication is an essential part of any successful relationship. When your children see you and your partner discussing things calmly, respectfully, and openly, they learn how to communicate in a way that can foster strong and lasting relationships.
It’s important to model communication skills in both positive and negative situations. When your children see you and your partner working together to find a mutually beneficial solution to a disagreement, they learn the importance of compromise and understanding. On the other hand, if your children see you and your partner discussing an issue without getting angry or frustrated, they learn the importance of staying calm and keeping an open dialogue.
Communicating effectively is a skill that your children will use throughout their lives, so it’s important to model this skill as a parent. Showing your children how to communicate in a healthy and respectful way will help them form strong relationships, both personally and professionally.
Being a responsible parent means more than just providing for your children’s physical needs. It also means teaching your children how to be responsible for themselves and their actions. Having a strong marriage is a great way to model responsibility for your kids.
When your children see you and your partner taking responsibility for your own actions, it teaches them the importance of owning up to their mistakes and being responsible for their own choices. It also teaches them the importance of being reliable and dependable, which are important qualities for success in life.
When your children see you and your partner taking responsibility for your family, it teaches them the importance of working together as a team and being willing to do what’s necessary to ensure the well-being of the family. It encourages them to think of the family as a unit, and not just as individuals.
Finally, when your children see you and your partner taking responsibility for your marriage, it teaches them the importance of nurturing relationships and putting in the effort to make them thrive. It encourages them to think of marriage as something to be invested in and not taken for granted.
By modeling responsibility in your marriage, you are teaching your children important lessons that will help them build strong relationships and successful lives.
Model showing affection in ways that may not come naturally
By showing your children how to express affection in ways that may not come naturally, you are setting an example that they can carry with them throughout their lives.
One way to do this is to go out of your way to show your spouse that you appreciate them. This could be something as simple as sending them a heartfelt text, or taking the time to make them a special dinner. Showing your partner that you appreciate them is an important part of a healthy marriage, and it is something that your children can learn from.
Another way to show affection in a marriage is to be intentional about expressing your love and appreciation for your spouse. This could be something as simple as leaving them a note on the kitchen counter or giving them a hug when they come home from work. Taking the time to express your love and appreciation for your partner can help to keep the spark in your marriage alive, and it will also show your children that expressing affection is an important part of any relationship.
Finally, it is important to be willing to try new things with your spouse. This could be something as simple as a date night, or it could be something more adventurous, like taking a cooking class together. Going out of your comfort zone and trying something new is a great way to show your spouse that you care and that you are willing to take risks for the relationship. This is something that your children can learn from and apply to their own relationships in the future.
By modeling affection in your marriage, you are setting an example that your children can carry with them throughout their lives. Showing your children how to express love and appreciation for one another in unique and meaningful ways will help them to build strong and lasting relationships.