So, there have been debates on here about whether the order of priorities should be
In other words, should children be the priority over the spouse or the spouse be the priority over the children.
Many people tend to become exasperated by the notion that one should put one’s spouse before one’s children. I think there are a lot of misconceptions about this, and I think it’s important to clear it up.
First, let’s talk about what putting spouse first doesn’t mean. It doesn’t mean allowing a spouse to abuse children (or anyone). It doesn’t mean catering to a spouse’s every whim while the helpless children fend for themselves. It doesn’t mean you would rush to save your spouse from a burning building before you’d rush to save the children.
Anyone who is mistreating people—especially the children—must be dealt with appropriately. In situations where a spouse is abusing or mistreating the children, they must be stopped. That may mean admonishing them, telling them their behavior is unacceptable, or even throwing them out of the house. Putting someone “first” never means allowing them to hurt others or do wrong. Also, whomever a spouse is mistreating needs to be defended and protected, especially if it’s the children.
In situations where a spouse is not abusive or acting detrimentally toward the children (or anyone), putting a spouse first can be described like this. Children are helpless and need continuous care. Taking care of their needs is going to take most of one’s time when the children are small. The spouse, who can take care of themselves, will naturally have to have some of their needs or wants placed on the back burner and prioritize the immediate needs of the children. However, as children get older this changes. They become more and more independent, and eventually will leave the nest and form their own lives with their own spouse and children. The relationship of the spouses will remain. If spouses focus solely on the children and forget about each other, their marriage will possibly crumble after the youngest child turns 18.
(Part 1 of 2)