Friday, June 26, 2009

For The Kids

Reading about this scientific study that proves that staying married for the sake of the kids does not always result in the desired outcome for the children, is vindication for parents who have decided to go solo. Several years ago when my marriage turned into this cesspool of anger, conflict and bitterness, leaving with J seemed like the best option. We have had more than our fair share of challenges as direct consequence of that decision but J has not lacked peace and quiet in the house.

In high conflict households, children go about their lives with a sense of rudderlessness. They have no one to take direction from or look up to, no one who is always emotionally available to address their problems. Some marriages take a lot of work to keep them viable - when spouses need to invest disproportionately into their relationship, their ability to attend to the needs of the children suffers. Single parent households have no such distractions and this often works out to the child's advantange.

I have long believed that using children to glue a bad marriage is the worst way to go about the job. Children are not supposed to and cannot mend the relationship between their parents. By placing them in a position where that is the desired effect, parents burden them with the most onerous kind of responsibility. Instead, they should take ownership of their problems and resolve it independently of their children. Sometimes, the only solution might be to end the marriage and that could be the best thing to do - specially for the sake of the kids.

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