Free shipping on all orders over $75🎄

To the married momma,

The number one thing you can do for your children is take care of your marriage. It’s not the amount of time you spend at the table doing flashcards to prepare for a test; it’s not how many organic meals they get prepared by your loving hands; and it’s not how many adventures you’re able to take them on. Are all of those things beneficial to your children? Absolutely. No argument. But there is not a thing more important to your children than a happy, healthy relationship with your spouse. Here’s why . . . 

I hear it so much. “Ha! What’s date night?”

“Sex?! LOL not after I’ve spent all day taking care of these kids and this house.”

“Vacation? Oh I could never leave my babies.”

“Kids come first, always. If they didn’t I would be so selfish.”

“It’s fine if we don’t nurture our marriage now, we can do it when the kids are grown and move out. For now it’s about them.”

But I’ve also heard from couples who are divorcing, whether with young children or after their kids are off to college, and they have the opposite to say. Your marriage cannot wait. It cannot be put on the back burner. Your children cannot be so prioritized that you forget the person you created them with.

Of course, there are the benefits to you as a couple when you focus on your marriage, but I know, as a mom of two myself, that we want everything we do to benefit our children as well. Are you surprised to know making your marriage a top priority will ultimately benefit your children more than making THEM #1?

When mom and dad make sure to put one another first, the marriage flourishes. From there, the couple is able to act as a united front and the solid rock on which a family is built. Making sure your marriage is healthy allows you to be a better, more focused parent. You can tackle the stresses and problems of parenthood together rather than acting alone. Children won’t be able to pin mom against dad when they aren’t getting their way, and boundaries will be more firm and non-negotiable. You also have the enormous privilege of teaching your children that while they’re loved and important, they are not the center of the universe. You were “beloved wife” before you were “Mommy” and you will be “beloved wife” long after those kids are gone and don’t depend on you anymore. But your spouse always will.

When you put your partner first, you get to not only show your kids the value of a partnership, but how they can expect to treat and be treated in a marriage. Your example of marriage should show your children why the possibility of a lifelong commitment is beautiful and even desirable. Whether you want to or not, you are teaching by example how your daughters and sons should be treated by their spouses, just by how you treat yours. Your marriage sets up the way they view and act in their own romantic relationships. Can you see the crucial importance in that? We have a responsibility to make sure those relationships are healthy, and to show how to deal with them when they are not.

Prioritizing your marriage can be done in the simplest of ways, or in the grandest. 

Go to bed together each night or spend an hour distraction-free in conversation after the kids are in bed. Learn each other’s love language and express love in that way. Apologize, forgive. Hold hands in the store and cuddle on the couch. Tell your spouse how appreciated he is, how loved he is, and how much you respect him. Check in by asking what you can do for him tomorrow, and if you hurt him in any way yesterday. Have sex, regularly. Establish “fight rules” so that when you disagree, nothing is said or done that is so damaging you can’t undo it. Drop the kids off with a family member or hire a trustworthy sitter and go to lunch on a Saturday. Spend time with other couples who prioritize their spouse too. Go to marriage workshops, even counseling if need be. Pray together. 

Allowing your marriage to fade into the background can hurt you and your family in many ways. But there is no downside to prioritizing it. You, your spouse, and your children will have nothing to lose and everything to gain when there is a flourishing marriage present in your home. So tonight, put the kids to bed, turn off the TV, pull out a board game and grab the ice cream from the freezer. Invest in your marriage. You won’t be sorry.

So God Made a Mother book by Leslie Means

If you liked this, you'll love our new book, SO GOD MADE A MOTHER available now!

Order Now

Erin Holland

I am a 26-year-old mother of two and Christian wife from Texas. I am the most "hot mess" of moms out there and I own that. I love Netflix and online shopping, as well as dancing barefoot in my living room while singing country music at the top of my lungs.

Brothers Fight Hard and Love Harder

In: Kids, Motherhood
Two boys play outside, one lifting the other on his back

The last few years have been a whirlwind. My head has sometimes been left spinning; we have moved continents with three boys, three and under at the time. Set up home and remained sufficiently organized despite the complete chaos to ensure everyone was where they were meant to be on most days. Living in a primarily hockey town, the winters are filled with coffee catch-ups at the arena, so it was no surprise when my youngest declared his intention to play hockey like his school friends. Fully aware that he had never held a hockey stick or slapped a puck,...

Keep Reading

Stop Putting an Expiration Date on Making Memories

In: Kids, Motherhood
Mother and son in small train ride

We get 12 times to play Santa (if we’re lucky). This phrase stopped my scroll on a Sunday evening. I had an idea of the direction this post was going but I continued on reading. 12 spring breaks 12 easter baskets 20 tooth fairy visits 13 first days of school 1 first date 1-2 proms 1-2 times of seeing them in their graduation cap and gown 18 summers under the same roof And so on and so on. It was essentially another post listing the number of all the monumental moments that we, Lord willing, will get to experience with our...

Keep Reading

When Your Kids Ask, “Where Is God?”

In: Faith, Kids
Child looking at sunset

How do I know if the voice I’m hearing is God’s voice? When I was in high school, I found myself asking this question. My dad was a pastor, and I was feeling called to ministry. I didn’t know if I was just hearing my dad’s wish or the call of God. I was worried I was confusing the two. It turns out, I did know. I knew because I was raised to recognize the presence of God all around me. Once I knew what God’s presence felt like, I also knew what God’s voice sounded like. There is a...

Keep Reading

Go Easy On the Parents Who Refuse to Skip Naps

In: Kids, Motherhood
Two little boys and their sister walking down a gravel road, color photo

Greetings from a mom who is done with napping children. It’s great to have the flexibility during the day for longer activities, meeting friends for playdates, or day trips to faraway places. It’s a new life . . . the life without naps. The freedom to make plans and keep them. But not that long ago, I was something very different than the flexible, plan-keeping, up-for-it woman I am today. I used to be the mom who refused to skip my child’s nap. Yep, that one. Here’s the thing, for a lot of parents, It’s so much more than just a...

Keep Reading

My Heart Isn’t Ready for You to Stop Believing in Santa

In: Kids, Motherhood
Little boy standing in front of lit christmas tree

“My friend doesn’t believe in Santa anymore, Mom,” my son said out of the blue the other day. We were driving in the car, and when I met his gaze in the rear-view mirror his eyes searched mine. Immediately, my heart sank.  This sweet boy, he’s our first. Thoughtful and smart and eight years old. A quick Google search tells me that’s the average age kids stop believing in Santa, but as his mom, I’m not ready for that—not even a little bit.  I can still hear his barely 2-year-old voice going on about reindeer as we lay together on...

Keep Reading

Motherhood is a Million Little Letting Gos and Fresh Hellos

In: Kids, Motherhood
Mother sitting with child on her lap by the setting sun and water

I missed my grocery-shopping buddy the other day. Mondays are usually the days my littlest and I knock out our grocery list. In the past, we’ve dropped the kids at school and then headed to the store. I grab a latte, and she chooses a hot chocolate. But that day, they were all in school. That day, she sat in her kindergarten class, and I went to the grocery store. Alone. A new rhythm. A changed routine. A different season. I listened to a podcast on the drive. My podcast. Then I grabbed a drink. Just one. I got the...

Keep Reading

Dear Kids, This Is My Wish for You

In: Kids, Motherhood
Mother hugs three kids

To my kids, The world you’re stepping into is unlike anything I experienced at your age. It’s fast-paced, interconnected, and sometimes overwhelming. But within this chaos lie countless opportunities for growth and joy. My wish for you is that you find the perfect balance between embracing the modern world and staying true to yourselves. Change is one thing you can always count on. Embrace it because it’s often the motivation for growth. Embracing change doesn’t mean letting go of who you are; rather, it’s about evolving into the best version of yourself. Remember, you don’t need to have all the...

Keep Reading

Dear Daughter, Stay Wild

In: Kids, Motherhood
Mother and daughter on beach, color photo

I can’t really put my finger on it. Or manage to find all the words. But there’s just something about that girl. Maybe it’s the way her hair sits tangled. Curled up at the end. The way she moves. Dances. As if everyone was watching. Or no one at all. RELATED: There is Wild Beauty in This Spirited Child of Mine It could be the way she smiles. With her heart. The way only she can. The way she cares, loves. For everyone. For herself. You see, she is beautiful in the way only wild things are. The way they...

Keep Reading

You’re Becoming a Big Sister, But You’ll Always Be My Baby

In: Baby, Kids, Motherhood
Pregnant woman with young daughter, color photo

The anticipation of welcoming a new baby into the world is an exciting and joyous time for our family. From the moment we found out we were expecting to just about every day since, the love and excitement only continue to grow. However, amidst all the preparations for the new addition, I cannot help but have mixed emotions as I look back at old videos and pictures of my firstborn, my first princess, my Phoebe—for she will always hold a special place in my heart. As the anticipation grows, my heart swells with a mix of emotions knowing we are...

Keep Reading

Cowgirls Don’t Cry Unless the Horse They Loved Is Gone

In: Grief, Kids, Loss
Little girls Toy Story Jessie costume, color photo

The knee of my pants is wet and dirty. My yellow ring lays by the sink—it’s been my favorite ring for months. I bought it to match Bigfoot’s halter and the sunflowers by his pasture. Bigfoot is my daughter’s pony, and I loved him the most. The afternoon is so sunny. His hooves make the same calming rhythm I’ve come to love as I walk him out back. A strong wind blows through the barn. A stall labeled “Bigfoot,” adorned with a sunflower, hangs open and I feel sick. I kneel down by his side as he munches the grass....

Keep Reading