Be an example for your children

Marriage is like a garden. Just like a garden, it takes hard work. And after all the hard work, there is a harvest.

Currently we are talking about the importance of ‘enjoying your marriage.’ I began by sharing that proactively enjoying your marriage will refresh you and your partner’s hearts and souls. You need to enjoy the blessings of achieving your goals. You need to enjoy all the fruit of your hard work.

The next reason for enjoying your marriage is for your children. And for any other children that are a part of your life. Children need to see and experience healthy examples of partnership.  They need to enjoy being a part of a family. This will especially help them in the future, when they marry.

Consider a recent article in the Mainichi Newspaper. “Around 38 percent of people in their 20s and 30s said they didn’t want a boyfriend or girlfriend, according to a recent government survey, highlighting Japanese young people’s lack of desire for romantic relationships.” The most common response to name reason for not wanting a boyfriend or girlfriend was “love affairs are too much of a hassle.”

What? Almost 40% of Japanese young people think that love is a hassle? This figure is amazing to me. Where did they learn this?

To be brutally honest, they learned it from the dysfunctional marriages of their parents and the friends of their parents. They learned it from their parents not enjoying one another. From watching wives complaining about and maligning their husbands. From watching husbands having love affairs with other woman and pornography. They have watched and learned.

They see all the hard work that their parents put into their marriage.  They see how little their parents enjoy one another. Is it any wonder that young people now say, “love affairs are too much of a hassle?”

How can you share the harvest of your marriage partnership with your children? Here are three ways.

1. Enjoy your partner. Show your children that you really like your partner. Say nice things about your partner in front of your children. Compliment and encourage your partner in front of your children. Thank your partner in front of your children.

2. Have fun with your partner in front of your children. Enjoy life. Don’t turn ‘play’ into ‘work’. Just have fun. Let them see the ‘hard work’ of marriage, and experience the ‘harvest’ of marriage.

3. Be romantic with your partner in front of your children. Yes, I am American. Yes, I know that Japanese have different opinions about displaying affection in front of others. But for God’s sake people, porn is available EVERYWHERE in Japan. Children need a healthy example of two loving adults enjoying romance as a part of their lives. Get over it and kiss your partner in front of your kids. Or hold hands. Or sleep in the same bed.

And their other ways. What ideas do you have for how you can share a harvest with your children?

It is time for harvest, and your children need to enjoy it. Share your harvest with your children. Prepare them for their future!

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