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Rule One for Families

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My family and I were recently at the airport, returning home from a trip out of the country. As we approached passport check-in, airline workers directed us to kiosks for automatic passport scanning. They didn’t give a lot of instruction, but they did keep yelling one thing over and over as we approached, “Families stay together! Families stay together!”

My husband was focused on pulling our luggage, so he hadn’t paid attention to the instructions and went to a separate kiosk to try to speed things along. The airline staff reminded him to stay with his family, explaining that the process works better when all family members are scanned at the same kiosk. “Families stay together!” she yelled as she walked toward the next group of approaching passengers.

My husband looked at me and smiled, realizing we were both thinking the same thing, “You could use that saying for iMOM,” he said. He was right; that one rule is a great reminder of the power of keeping our families together, our marriages together—no matter how appealing other options might seem or how difficult things can be at times.

Here’s why you should do whatever you can to fight for your marriage and keep your family together:

It provides double the love to our kids.

When you get really irritated at your husband or you’re at an even darker place thinking about separating or divorcing, reconsider the power of having your children get the daily love of the two people who love them most in the world. Yes, your husband might annoy you, but look at the way he helps your son with his homework and the way your daughter lights up when he tells her how beautiful she is. When you feel like it would be better to “go to separate kiosks,” remember that your just okay marriage is better than no marriage for your children.

It teaches our kids staying power.

By making your marriage work, by keeping your family together, you are showing your children what it looks like to persevere. You’re teaching them how to manage the ups and downs of life without throwing in the towel. You are giving them the power to stick it out when college gets tough, when a job is challenging, when life isn’t exactly what they thought it would be.

It gives our children happier lives.

Okay, we don’t want to make anyone feel guilty here, but experts have a strong rebuttal to the reasoning that says, “If my husband and I divorce, I’ll be a happier person, and a happy mom is a better mom.”

Studies show the exact opposite. The adult may be happier, but there isn’t a trickle down effect to the children. Children get the short end of the stick.

It can get better.

If your marriage is in a tough place, remind yourself that the man you married, the one you loved enough to say “I’m in this for the long haul,” is still in there, somewhere. If you don’t give up, and make even small changes consistently, your marriage can get better.

Research shows that…

 Two-thirds of unhappily married spouses who stayed married reported that five years later their marriages were happy.

Most surprising of all, the most unhappy marriages reported the most dramatic turnarounds: Among those who rated their marriages as very unhappy, almost eight out of ten who avoided divorce were happily married five years later.

How can you stay together?

You can take a step in the right direction, even today, to fight for your marriage and keep your family together. Get started by visiting our iMOM Happy Marriage Tips section, then, look for more solutions in our Marriage Problems section.

And tell us, what’s your tip for keeping your family together?


What three countries would you like to visit one day?

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