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Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Understanding your spouse/ partner for a stronger family

Every time I do adoption counseling I try to evaluate the couple for their intimacy towards each other. I do this mostly by observing their actions, body language and tone of voice to each other etc. Very rarely I do this by asking an explicit question.

I am a great believer that a couple that loves each other more also loves their children more. I also believe that it must remain in that order – spouse/ partner first and children. Most of the time families begin to have problems because mom and dad fail to understand what makes the family work or reversed the order of their love.

Traditionally it is believed that the Dad has to provide and protect and mom has to nurture. I have seen many families where dad has a secure job (to provide and protect) and mom is a home maker (to nurture) but they are heading for a separation. I am convinced that there is something more to it than just the traditional beliefs.

When Paul wrote a letter to Hebrews in the Bible, he said “Husbands LOVE your wives and wives RESPECT your husbands”. This statement clearly states the difference in needs and it is because of the way we are made to be with our biology. Women need love (sensual) and men need respect (ego or big head). Couples that understand and practice this basic equation seem to be strong and healthy in their relationship.

Every activity that we do to please each other (like buying flowers or a tool box) must derive from this fundamental foundational equation. Wife can respect her husband through love and husband can love his wife by his respect but reversing this equation completely would be like forgetting your spouse’s biology so I suggest that you do both (love and respect) than just simply reversing it.

I have observed that many women enjoy simple things in life while many men enjoy doing magnanimous or big things. So look around to see if you need to cut vegetables, wash dishes or throwing that trash away for your wife or learn to drive a motor vehicle to do house hold chores to help your husband. When our children watch this equation being practiced at home by two individuals that they love the most, they become strong and healthy individuals also.

1 comment:

Jeff and Leslie said...

This is great advice. We know several couples who, upon having a child, put that child first always and forget that they are still supposed to be a couple. Leslie and I try to share all responsibilities, respect one another, and set aside some time for just the two of us. So far so good :-)