Wednesday, September 19, 2007

BEING A WIFE & MOTHER and building a strong MARRIAGE

This post was one I did as a Guest Commentator for Multi-Tasking Mom's.
Hi ! My name is Susan and I blog as Penless Writer.

I am honored to have been asked to be a Guest Commentator for Multi-Tasking Mom's. I begin by quoting a past Pastor of ours who use to say "Commentators are nothing but Common Taters"!!!! I think I easily fall into that category.

When first asked to participate my reaction was, "It's been so long since I've been an active, hands on Mom I'm not sure I qualify". On further reflection, I believe living so many years (69), active mothering for over 35 of those years, being a grandmother for 21 years, and being just Mickey & I as Empty Nester's for the past 18 years I do have something to say.

Any of you who read my blog know that I am the mother of 4 adult children and that there is a 15 year age span between my first born and my fourth born. This explains why I held the active mothering position for those 35 years. It also explains why I have granddaughters 21 and 12 years old and a grandson 8 years old. You also know that we are a very close-knit family.

All this mothering experience aside I am going to comment on

BEING A WIFE & MOTHER and building a strong MARRIAGE.

I believe strongly in the family. The family is the first institution God set up. It all began when God created Eve to be a help mate for Adam. God created her to complete him. That's an awesome thought isn't it? Adam was not complete by himself alone. I believe our first, and most important role and love, after God and Jesus, is to be our husband. We are first husband and wife and we will be husband and wife long after the children are gone from the home.

I have seen too many woman take their role of mother and motherhood to such a degree that it becomes the center of their world. Consequently the husband is pushed off to the side and into second place. They begin to live separate lives to a certain extent. The woman is concentrating all her time and effort on the children, with the husband on the side lines. The man is concentrating all his time and effort on his job. They begin to grow in separate and different ways. The wonderful husband-wife connection, which started it all, starts to fade.

My strong feelings in this regard came even before I was married or had children. I had two very loving parents and grew up in a good Christian home where I was taught good moral values, responsibility, truthfulness, hard work, etc. The one thing my family lacked was my parents lived two separate lives to a great extent. I determined, at a very early age, I wanted a marriage where my husband and I had a lot in common and were a strong family unit.

Over the years I've seen far to many mothers that have centered their lives on the children front and center. Then when the children are grown you find two adults looking at each other and saying, "Who are you? I don't know you any more. What happened to the love, fun, excitement we use to have?" The children leave and you have two strangers living together who do not share common interests or goals any longer.

So be sure to keep that guy you fell in love with front and center throughout your child rearing years. When you do this you will share a wonderful, full, exciting, "empty nest" life together.

Now, having said all this......I also have to add that.....ONCE A MOTHER ALWAYS A MOTHER. I tell my kids this ALL the time and they know it well. They are as important to me now, as adults, as they were when they were small children growing and finding out who they were and who they were becoming.

It truly is a balancing act....It's important not to fall in the ditch on either side of the road. Just remember to keep things balanced and not push either your children or your husband off to the side. Always remembering that JESUS CHRIST is the most important person to keep front and center.


Just one more comment, from this "common tator".

If you are a single-mom, as I once was, I have this advice.

When another man comes waltzing into your life your first concern has to be making sure he will be the kind of father you want to help raise your children. When Mickey & I were "dating" most of those "dates" revolved around doing things with and for my two little girls. I knew, without a shadow of a doubt, Mickey would be a wonderful father. Almost 49 years later I am here to tell you he lived up to all my expectations.

As a single-mom your first priority has to be to those children whether that means raising them by yourself or finding that right husband and FATHER.

BUT once you decide to entrust yourself and your children into the love and care of another man you must NEVER, and I mean NEVER EVER say anything like "Leave MY kids alone" or "Don't treat MY kids like that". This is of course UNLESS there is being physical harm done to them.....that's a whole different thing. But I'm talking about just establishing and making a good, caring, loving family. When he marries you and takes on the responsibility for the love and care of you and your kids you become a "family" and the word "ME or MINE" has to be set aside forever. If there are disputes about the discipline of the children you must never discuss that in front of the children. Rather, later, in a private setting between the two of you discuss with him then, "I don't think you should have......." or "I think you were being to hard on......" This is good advise for all marriages. Put up one standard to the children at all times.

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