Will having a child save my marriage?

The first time my marriage encountered serious problems, I considered having a child as a quick fix to save it. We figured that if we focused on raising a child together, we just might find our way back to our love.  However, after consulting with some people, I had a change of heart. I was informed that rather than fix my problems, a child might complicate things further or delay the inevitable. But were these people right?

Having a child can help strengthen a couple’s bond.

Couple bonding with child
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It is believed that for a couple that has grown apart, having a child can reignite their bond as they raise their child together. The child is the ultimate symbol of just how much connected they are to each other. It is a bond that cannot be taken away. As the couple loves and cares for the child together, they will start to remember a time when they worked as a couple. They will begin to recognize those good qualities in their partner again.

Having a child can give you a chance to mature

For first time parents, having a child would be an opportunity for the couple to give themselves a second chance, if not ‘for the sake of the child.’ It can also be an opportunity for them to examine themselves and grow.

They might start looking at their problems with fresh eyes given that they have to be responsible parents to the newborn. For parents with kids already, it is a chance to re-evaluate themselves. Having a newborn might trigger certain emotions that will force them to examine how they’ve been living their lives.

A child brings joy to the home

Even though children are a huge responsibility, they have the potential to bring joy to a home. With the new bundle of both joy and responsibility, the parents might divert their focus from their problems and devote it to taking care of their young one.

Having a child will not erase marital problems

When a marriage is on the rocks, it naturally means that there are problems that the couple is still grappling with. It means that those problems have not been fixed yet. Therefore, the idea that bringing a child into such an environment will somehow erase those issues and give the parents a fresh start seems doubtful. Perhaps the coming of the child might allow the couple to forget about their problems for a while but that does not mean that those problems have gone away.

Children come with their own set of challenges

Children come with a lot of responsibilities and also with life-altering changes for both the mother and father. Traditionally speaking, for the father, it means a stretch on his financial muscle. This includes the amount of time he gets to spend home with his family if he is to bond with the child.

For the mother, the changes come in all possible forms. These can be physical, biological, emotional, psychological, and financial. If the marriage is already on the rocks before the baby, chances are that the couple might not be able to deal with their new set of challenges effectively.

A child will only delay the inevitable

Photo: ©123rf.com

A very important point for parents to remember is that all children eventually grow up. If the couple does not get help to fix their problems before or after the child is born, they would have only succeeded in delaying time. Sooner or later the problems will re-emerge. In the worst case scenario, they would have willingly brought a child to be raised in a very toxic environment.

Having a child to fix problems is selfish and unfair

When a couple reaches a point where they feel having a child is the solution to their problems, that is a significant sign in itself that something huge is wrong in the relationship. Having a child to help fix a marriage is a distorted and unfair way to bring a life into the world. It is unfair to the child and the parents.

Is it worth the risk?

There are indeed couples whose marriages were saved by having kids. However, it would be naïve to assume that even our marriages might have the same luck if we took the same route. Every couple has its own unique set-up.We need to thoroughly examine what sort of problems those couples that were miraculously solved by having a child.

There is a general misconception that the number of years spent in a marriage equals success. In reality, what should matter is how those years have been spent. Also, if they’re contributing positively to the growth of all parties involved.

The temptation to rely on our faith to miraculously fix our problems though commendable can sometimes prove fatal. We cannot always use the excuse of prayer where reason is required. It is the mandate of parents to raise their children in a loving environment. It is not the child’s responsibility to save the parent’s problems. We are mandated to love, protect and care for our children.We cannot place such a heavy burden on them.

Therefore, before making that decision to have that baby, ask yourself this question; will having a child really erase all these problems we’re having?


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