Anyone who regularly reads my blog (and really reads it) knows that I am a fierce advocate for LOVE, EROS and SEX as essential ingredients in a healthy relationship between adult couples, and that I am a fierce advocate for the well-being of children, especially for respecting their need for individuation, and for recognizing the uniqueness of their souls as paramount in our rearing of them.

That I am fierce about these matters is understood. That some people find that off-putting is understood. Nonetheless, the truth about most matters is not only out there, it's usually quite obvious for all to see, if one wants to see it.

This piece appeared in today's NY Times: "TILL CHILDREN DO US PART," by STEPHANIE COONTZ. Ms. Coontz is not against marriage, nor against having children (and, of course, neither am I). In fact, the piece in the Times doesn't really take a "position" about its subject matter; it simply describes the results of some research, just as the surveys about angry mothers did that spun off into the hot discussions that were on this blog last week.

Here are some excerpts from the Times piece:

"Over the past two decades, many researchers have concluded that three’s a crowd when it comes to marital satisfaction. More than 25 separate studies have established that marital quality drops, often quite steeply, after the transition to parenthood.
But does the arrival of children doom couples to a less satisfying marriage? Not necessarily. The drop in marital satisfaction was almost entirely accounted for by the couples who slid into being parents, disagreed over it or were ambivalent about it. Couples who planned or equally welcomed the conception were likely to maintain or even increase their marital satisfaction after the child was born."

Exactly. I would add that couples who have children as an outgrowth of their Love, Eros and Sex being at high levels - in other words, couples who are in love when they have kids - were much more likely to have children in a state of harmony, than those who have children to fulfill an image or an ego-driven agenda.

Here's more from the Stephanie Coontz:

"But keeping a marriage vibrant is a never-ending job. Couples often embark on such an intense style of parenting that they end up paying less attention to each other. In the long run, shortchanging adult-oriented activities for the sake of the children is not good for a marriage. Indeed, the researcher Ellen Galinsky has found that most children don’t want to spend as much time with their parents as parents assume; they just want their parents to be more relaxed when they are together. Couples need time alone to renew their relationship. They also need to sustain supportive networks of friends and family. Couples who don’t, investing too much in their children and not enough in their marriage, may find that when the demands of child-rearing cease to organize their lives, they cannot recover the relationship that made them want to have children together in the first place."

Yes! Yes! Yes! Yes! Yes!

Last licks from the Stephanie:

"As the psychologist Joshua Coleman suggests, the airline warning to put on your own oxygen mask before you place one on your child also holds true for marriage."

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