Q&A: Staying together for the sake of our children

Question:

My marriage of 17 years is basically dead. My husband and I are both done with it, but we have agreed that we’ll stay together for the children (ages 15 and 13) until they’re both out of the house. That will at least be a positive for the children, right?

Answer: That’s what a lot of couples on the verge of divorce say. According to a number of studies, they’re right. But there’s a lot more at stake here.

Children whose biological mother and father stay married are less likely to get into trouble, to use drugs, or to be sexually active at an early age. They’re also more likely to complete college and to enjoy a successful marriage of their own. Those are the kinds of positive results we all want for our children. It all starts with keeping your marriage together.

BUT – even better is to get your relationship on a path toward healing. Staying together for your children but fighting every night in front of them is counterproductive. Severe conflict in your home can unravel all the good you’re trying to do on their behalf.

A healthy home environment is one where children see their mum and dad work through their differences and live out their love for one another. Don’t stay together for the children’s sake only to stay miserable in your marriage. Seek some help for your problems and find some common ground.

If you and your husband are both willing to try, please call our Family Support Services at 03-3310 0792 or write to support@family.org.my.

You and your spouse don’t have to be strangers living together under the same roof. Do yourselves and your children a favour: Stay together and get your marriage healthy.

© 2018 Focus on the Family.  All rights reserved.  Used by permission.

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