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Are We There Yet?

“Marry your spouse, not your kids”

Don't put your kids first. At least, not before your spouse. That's advice from David Code, Episcopal priest, family coach and author of a new book titled, "To Raise Happy Kids, Put Your Marriage First."

In an e-mail interview with's Parent Paper, Code wrote about the common mistakes that couples make when it comes to parenting. Families nowadays are now child-centered, he said, as opposed to "marriage-centered." By focusing more on the kids instead of each other, couples sometimes drift apart.

"Parents are avoiding their spouses more than ever in marriage," he wrote. "They claim they're too busy to spend time with their spouses, but when they drift away from their spouses in an 'emotional divorce,' they never remain alone. They often shift their attention to their children, projecting their distress and neediness onto them."


As a result, some parents depend on their kids to fulfill their own emotional needs, according to Code. These parents also tend to avoid conflict, he said, so instead of resolving problems with their spouse, they distance themselves and the children become the center of their world.

With all the talk these days about "helicopter parenting" and the problems associated with over-parenting, what are your thoughts on this issue?

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This blog is intended to provide a forum for parents to share knowledge and resources. It's a place for parents young and old to combine their experiences raising families into a collective whole to help others.