Too many parents these days are putting themselves at the bottom of the ‘to do’ list. And some of them who know me may be asking, “how would you know anything, you don’t have kids?” Oh I get that I have no idea what it’s like to have kids but I do know that we all need to have great role models in our life and who better to be those role models than our parents. Children are our number one priority right? Well, kind of. They are our soul, our present and our future. What’s equally important is the relationship we have with our partner. As Stephanie Jankowski explains in her article, “Why I Put My Husband Before Our Kids.”
As you probably know, children don’t do as we say, they do as we do. They are watching our every move. The smile on our face doesn’t disguise the fear in our heart. A course I took a while ago through Landmark education taught me that children are not children, they are not growing up to be something, they are something right now. They are young people who are often wiser beyond their years and wiser than their parents. I’ve heard many parents saying their children often ask them if they are ok. Children can feel the love and more importantly they can feel the conflict, angst and resentment that their parents are harbouring towards each other. With the pressures and overwhelm parents are dealing with today, it’s no wonder children seem to have a better idea of what’s important. We adults are so caught up in what we think our children need; we forget that activities, education and possessions are not nearly as important as our presence. When parenting, you need to be on the same page. You also need to be each other’s strongest support, advocate and most importantly ally. This way your children can see you modeling a healthy relationship. Your children also need to see what a loving relationship looks like. They need to see what intimacy looks like. They need to see their parents hug, kiss and it’s ok if they catch you in the act. It’s an act involving two consenting adults who love each other very much. They need to see you loving each other. That’s how you as parents feel safe and it’s how your children will feel safe.
And I do get we are all doing the best we can with the tools we have. I get our parents may not have been that role model for us, in fact sometimes they were far from it but isn’t it time to break the cycle? Isn’t it time to put your primary relationship first so that you can be the best version of you? It’s time to put your children first by putting your relationship first.