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Child.ol’.a.try

Childolatry, an article written by John Gartner, PhD, published in the July 2014 issue of Psychology Today, points at one of the main causes of marital dissatisfaction: children. I know, I know, it sounds bad, considering how many of us partner up largely so that we can have and enjoy children (oh, the irony!)…

Although the article at first paints a bleak picture of what one can expect out of married life after children, what follows is a sensible argument for how things have become so disenchanting, and solid tips for restructuring relationships so as to ensure marital happiness, or at least, increase one’s odds of finding it! Here are a few of my favorite quotes from this piece:

  • In the contemporary era, couples expect to be best friends, to have complete equality in all spheres of life, and to sustain an ongoing romance with mutual sexual satisfaction—and an exclusive relationship at that… At the same time, modern marriage is accompanied by ever more dedication of time and resources to children… These are Olympian expectations, but you’d have a better chance of winning the actual Olympics.
  • Studies show that couples who do more things alone together are happier.
  • To survive happily as couples, we need to put a higher priority on sex and erect boundaries to protect our intimacy.
  • Here’s the paradox: We expect more from our marriages but feed them less.
  • Only in the past two decades have we developed the idea that children need an audience for their play. Are they really better off with hovering parents?
  • If we require a more child-centered reason to attend to adult needs, consider that a happy marriage is win-win. “The love between the couple is the real cradle that holds the baby,” says Julie Gottman.

Check out the full article by John Gartner, PhD.

What are your thoughts, fellow parents?