As I was thumbing through an issue of Parenting Magazine I came across a survey that discussed whether or not unhappy couples should stay together for the sake of the kids. Not that I found the results surprising as much as the question itself. Twenty one percent said stay together, seventy nine percent said “no”.
If you are going to live together for the sake of the kids why not go all the way and fix your marriage with your spouse? If you are putting your children first wouldn’t that be the best solution? In the United States the divorce rate is said to be as high as 50 percent, higher for second marriages. It makes sense that, this being the case, children from many of these divorced couples are making the same mistakes. The only way to break the cycle is to start by fixing our marriages.
I don’t see how staying together for the sake of the children is the right thing to do unless you are going to aggressively work on your marriage. What does it say to your children when mom and dad don’t sleep in the same room or show love and affection to one another? Children are smart and they will know something is missing and they may lack the skills involved in having a healthy relationship with others because they don’t have a good role model at home.
I hope I don’t sound like I am condoning divorce, in fact, the opposite is true. Divorce has devastating effects on all parties, especially the children. The point is that we need to be living examples of what we want our children to be.
As parents, either living together or not, it is our responsibility to provide a loving, secure, and conflict free environment for your children.