Many people think putting their spouse first means they can’t do anything else, they lose independence, they are limited or controlled, or they have to have approval constantly. Every marriage I know that is working well, say they put each other as #1 on their priority list. One of my readers sent me this link/website and I shrunk it down for you to enjoy and learn! Read, Learn and Live! Why not right? If you get one thing out of this article…I’m doing my job well for you! Have a great day!
Is your family out of order? Does your spouse come first, or do your kids take the number one spot? Do you even know which should be the top priority in your family? We’re here to tell you – whether your family is traditional or blended – your marriage has to take priority over your kids.
No more excuses: Recent research has shown that when the family unit falls apart, so do the kids. Children from broken homes have a higher rate of academic problems, promiscuity, teen pregnancy, alcohol and drug abuse, emotional and behaviour problems, violence, suicide and poverty as an adult. If you are thinking that you are doing the best for your child when you put your spouse on the back burner and your kids as number one, you are sorely mistaken. The best way to protect your children from these things is to keep your marriage together. If you want to be the best parents you can be, work to become the best loving couple you can be.
Do it for your kids:
We know this idea is not an easy sell for most people. But once you realize that children need to know that their parents love not only them, but each other. Their sense of security grows. To put your marriage on hold for 18 years – or even one year – while you raise children is not only detrimental to your marriage, but it is also devastating to your children.
When the parental team breaks down, children become the biggest losers. They lose their core family, which is where they build their sense of security. When children don’t feel secure, their whole world seems to unravel. No amount of baseball, football, dance, piano lessons or toys can make up for that kind of loss.
Research shows that marriage takes a hard hit when you have kids. According to an analysis of 90 studies involving 31,000 married people, the drop in marital satisfaction after baby #1 is a staggering 42% larger among the current generation of parents than their predecessors. Satisfaction dips even lower with each successive child. So, if you can’t seem to prioritize connecting with your spouse or spend money on dates with each other . . . do it for your kids! And if you’re not sure how to start, we’re going to coach you with practical ways to be couple-focused rather than child-focused!
Making marriage number one:
We want to challenge you to take some time to talk with your spouse about how you two can make your marriage a priority. Can you do this? Pull out your calendars, and see when you can set aside time for just the two of you. Try setting a regular date night. Even if it’s just once a month, that can be so refreshing for your relationship! Get your babysitter ready ahead of time, and figure out what you’d like to do. You can take turns choosing the “date” each month.
If you need some ideas, check out our book 40 Unforgettable Dates with Your Mate. It includes some great ideas for planning a date specifically for your spouse and to meet your spouse’s love needs! So, start today, and make your marriage a priority by setting aside time alone for you and your mate!
A huge warm hug of ‘Thank you’ to: http://www.focusonthefamily.ca/marriage/intimacy-romance/putting-your-spouse-first
(STORY) Making My husband #1:
My husband Chris and I have been together for 19 years. Like you, our lives are consumed by the logistics of running a household, managing careers and caring for our three kids and a dog. Like you, our lives are impossibly busy. Like you, we love our kids. Our marriage provides the foundation for everything that we’ve built together. It isn’t a joke. It’s something we work hard at and are tremendously proud of. I want it to last a lifetime, which is why I respect it and treat it accordingly.
If you stop and think about it, it’s the way it should be. You should put your marriage first:
- 1) A strong marriage is the healthiest thing you can give your kids. Your kids feel safe and loved when they see two parents who work as a team, take interest in each other, make an effort, display both respect and affection and act like one another’s favorite, even after all these years.
- 2) If you put your spouse first, it works and you remain happy. If you want your marriage to last your lifetime, give it the attention and effort it deserves. Your kids will live with you for just two short decades. Putting your marriage on cruise control for 20 years, while you focus on your kids is like falling asleep at the wheel – deadly. When your kids leave, your spouse is the one who’s left. If you’ve made them your last priority (and think it’s funny) they’d be dumb to stay with you.
- 3) Spouses aren’t roommates, they are a team and lovers. When your kids become the center of your universe…your role as husband and wife with an exciting love life gets shelved. Slowly you start to feel like a taxi driver, lunch packer and homework checker. You and your spouse become so busy focusing on everything but each other that you drift apart. At first you just feel really busy, but then you start to feel like roommates.
- 4) You don’t want to raise obnoxious kids: When you make kids the center of your universe, they turn into adults who think they are the center of the universe.
- 5) Don’t you want your kids to grow up and marry someone who puts them first? Of course you do! And, its your job to teach them what it looks like. Show them with your marriage first.
Putting your marriage first is actually really easy. All you have to do is to find small ways make your spouse feel cherished. Most people already do this to their dog, just follow that philosophy:
- Treat your spouse like the dog, only better: greet them at the door, always be happy to see them (wag your tail), go for walks every day, reward good behavior several times a day with a treat, give lots of physical affection every day (pet the dog) and don’t hold grudges (you don’t resent a dog for weeks on end for pooping once in the house…so don’t stay mad at your spouse for something they said last week). Dogs live in the moment. Marriages should do.
- Bring him/her coffee every morning.
- Hug, hold hands, often.
- Text/sext throughout the day (not requests to do things – reminders “just thinking about you xo”)
- Make your bedroom a no kids zone – explain to the kids that it’s “your space”
- Say I love you, in front of the kids, daily.
- Plan the week as a family, every Sunday to make logistics a minimum. You and your spouse should manage your family like it’s a team but you’re the star players. A friend of mine calls it “steering the ship” – the family may all be on the same cruise liner – but you and your spouse drive it.
It’s simple stuff if you think about it. Honestly it’s just about your focus. Life is busy. Technology overwhelms us. When you throw in kids, pets, work, girlfriends, etc – you have to prioritize – you can not do it all. Declaring your spouse as your number one priority is the first step, from there it’s pretty simple.
My mom and Dad will be married 45 years in June. To this day, I remember when dad would come home, He’d hug mom first and the dog would start barking at their embrace because he was so jealous. I remember that we’d have to wait to have dinner until he got home from work, no matter how late it was. Even at a young age, I knew that we weren’t waiting because they wanted us to all be together, it was because they wanted to be together. I also remember how he told her he loved her every day and kissed her before he left for work. They modeled a marriage that I wanted. I wanted to be the most important thing in my husband’s life, and vice versa. I never felt a lack of love, just the opposite – I was surrounded by it. I knew my dad loved me, but I knew he loved my mom most. And, that’s how it should be.