I have been thinking about this from the other day. Sara and I went visiting teaching, and our visit teachee really stressed how important it is to be a wife first and then a mother. She talked about how tempting and easy it is to be a mother first, because your kids need you so much and love you so openly, but how your kids are here with you for only about twenty years, and then you've got your husband for many, many more (forever for me!).
Obviously, I'm not saying neglect your children, because it is your job to take care of them, but it's your husband's job, too. Let your children be something that brings you together rather than tears you apart.
I know, it's easier said than done (I assume), but it's always good to have it in the back of your mind, so you don't end up empty-nester retirees who have nothing in common with one another.
I really like how later in the article, it highlights how divorce doesn't just affect the couple divorcing. Depending on the stage of your marriage, it affects the children that you never got to have, or the children you have, or your grandchildren, or your mutual friends, or your in-laws, etc. Marriage truly never affects only two people.
Love for the Long HaulNote: Names have been changed
by Mitch Temple
I'll never forget the counseling session with Al and Olivia. They had been high school sweethearts and, now in their mid-50s, had been married almost 35 years. Al was about to retire after 25 years at a paper mill. Olivia was a registered nurse. They had three grown children and six grandchildren.
Al sat stone-faced in the corner chair in my office. Olivia fought back tears as she explained why they were there. "Al says he doesn't love me anymore. He's found someone else."
"Al, is this the situation?" I asked.
He cleared his throat and spoke softly, "Yeah, I guess it's so."
I listened as they both explained how they put so much energy into raising kids and building careers that they forgot to love each other and nurture their marriage. After the kids moved out, Al and Olivia never discovered how to reconnect and fill the gap of an empty nest. . . .