First off, let me start out by saying that I do not have an M.D, PhD, or XYZ next to my name. I am not a perfect mother, perfect wife, nor do I have the perfect family. I am just a plain Jane (with some experience and knowledge might I add!) But for some reason or another many of you out there like what I have to say. I like to create a forum in which I encourage others to express their opinions on the subject, so feel free to comment below!
Everyone deserves to be happy. Wouldn’t you agree? Life is so precious and it is a shame to spend your life in misery. But many people do it and some don’t even know they are unhappy. Some don’t even know they are depressed.
The family unit is a very simple one; parents are the core of the family. There is a big misconception that kids always come first and the kids are all that matters to the parents. I don’t believe that to be true. Granted, they are a huge priority and responsibility but if they always come first, the family will not be balanced and the children will feel like they are responsible for everything that happens (because that’s how the family is operating!) The thing is, that’s not a good feeling for a kid because a kid wants to feel like their parent is in control. It’s actually quite SIMPLE! If you are happy, they will be happy too. Sure you can buy your children great toys, dress them up, and take them on grandiose vacations. But the truth is, you can not buy happiness…you have to create it!
So, how do you know if you should stay in a marriage if you are not happy with your significant other? As always, I think it’s helpful if you attempt to look at it in a relatively factual and SIMPLE way. Relationships can be very complicated (especially once you have children). Every marriage goes through bumpy patches (at times they can feel like mountains!). If you step away and look at the big picture, it will help you to identify the problems and solutions. Core values are the principles in which your family is built upon. Here are a few values that I believe are necessary (from both partners) for a marriage to be successful and therefore creating a positive family experience.
Commitment – Do you completely trust one another and feel committed to make a marriage work?
Similar values and interests – Do you enjoy some of the same activities and are you on the same page about what’s most important for raising children?
Respect – Do you and your partner talk to each other in a respectable manner?
Kindness – Do you compliment each other, smile at each other, or do nice things for each other?
Think about these values and what’s most important to you. If you are still struggling with this difficult decision, try marriage counseling. I think it’s a shame that many people get separated before utilizing this great resource. If you have children, I think every resource should be utilized before throwing in the towel. Its best if it can be utilized before either party ‘mentally’ throws in the towel. If the towel is ‘thrown in’ and all options have been exhausted, then perhaps it’s better to go your separate ways and create a new positive environment for your children. In my opinion, a child would rather be in a happy home that is separated rather than an unhappy family home.
Every couple has challenging times but figuring out the difference between a bump in the road and generalized unhappiness will help you create the life you want and the life that is best for your children.