The best example our children are going to have of relationship is watching their parents. Everything they will learn and form their views on healthy relationships starts right at home with you. It can be really hard to keep your marriage a priority when little kids are running around taking up so much of your time, but keeping your marriage first can make a huge impact in more than one way.
Here are three things your children need to see you doing:
1. Hugging and Kissing. I know as teenagers this may gross your kids out, but really it’s just an act. Kids like to know that their parents love each other. Don’t let a day go by that you don’t show your kids that mom and dad are completely in love with each other. Even if your kids are young, they are still watching. Jase has pointed out to my husband when he forgets to kiss mommy goodbye. And when I am having a hard day, Jase tells me when daddy gets home he will kiss me and make it all better. Jase is watching how I interact with his daddy and forming his view of relationships through that.
2. Talking. You might roll your eyes at this one because it seems so small, but hear me out. What is one of the most important parts of a relationship? Communication. Now how hard is it to have a real conversation with your spouse with kids running around? Exactly. Some nights I feel like we get the kids in bed and we have barely talked. But something we try to do is sit down together, even if for five minutes, when my husband gets home and talk about our days. Sometimes our kids are running around crazy, sometimes they are crawling all over us, and sometimes they are playing perfectly. But even if it’s five minutes of chaos, it’s five minutes worth investing in my marriage. The kids are watching and through that they can see how important it is that mom and dad take time to focus on each other.
3. Disagreeing AND Apologizing. I know some people strongly disagree with arguing in front of your kids. But I think having a disagreement in front of them can be healthy. Kids need to know that disagreements happen. And just because there is a disagreement doesn’t mean that a marriage is falling apart. There are healthy ways to handle disagreement and work through conflicts. Children need to know that their parents know how to do this, and that relationships have this. Too many relationships today fall apart when things get tough. We need to show our children that isn’t how marriage works. And when we are wrong, apologizing for those times are huge. Our children are watching and learning from the way we interact in marriage and this concept is a big one to teach.
The most important people our children can learn about relationships from are the very people in their home. What are some ways that you show your kids the importance of your marriage?