Are you deciding to stay in an unhappy marriage just so your kids can be happy?
While this decision may come from a good place, it might not be the best one for you or your kids' future.
Marriage in real life is nothing like it's depicted in the movies. When you realize a little too late that you and your spouse are not compatible or your values aren't the same, then you find yourself at a crossroads.
Should you get a divorce or stick it out for your kids?
In instances where there's room for forgiveness and rebuilding your relationship, staying married for the kids may work. But in most cases, no matter what you do, the two of you just won't be able to picture the rest of your life together as a happy couple.
And when there are children involved, it's important to prioritize their needs because this could be something that shapes a huge portion of their lives. But you should know that staying together instead of choosing your happiness can be detrimental for your kids too. Here's why you need to think long and hard before deciding to stay in a broken marriage.
Setting a Bad Example
The one thing people often forget is that kids learn from their surroundings. They subconsciously pick up behaviors and internalize what they see happening around them.
It's impossible for you to fake your happiness with your spouse because even if you do, the atmosphere of the house will tell another story. Your kids will be able to sense the palpable tension and think that that's how normal marriages are supposed to be.
They'll have the wrong expectations from the institution. They may even mix up the concept of happiness and healthy relationships because you'd be setting a bad example for them. Your kids will grow into adults and may repeat the cycle that you started. They could stay in toxic relationships because you've taught them that leaving is not an option.
An Unhappy Home Results in Unhappy Kids
When you choose to stay for your children's happiness, you don't realize that your unhappiness will somehow affect them as well. You'll distance yourself from them so they won't find out that something's wrong and end up significantly damaging your bond with them.
They won't have any concept of self-love because all they've learned from you is that they shouldn't put themselves first over someone else's happiness. They'll end up making decisions that will hurt them only to please other people.
When they're able to put two and two together and realize you stayed for them, they'll start believing that they're responsible for your unhappiness.
It Will Put a Strain on Your Mental Health
When you use all your energy every single day just to keep up the façade of being in a happy marriage for your kids, you'll break, both emotionally and spiritually. And when you're in a constant battle internally, you won't be able to focus on your parenting. And if you are, you won't be able to do it right.
Living a lie just so your kids can grow up with both parents under the same roof will damage you beyond repair. Don't miss your chance of finding true happiness just because you think the benefits of parents staying together outweigh the cons.
When you're not happy and you know there's nothing left to work on, then you need choose yourself and leave. Figure out a way to co-parent so your kids can have a better future.
Atlanta Family Law Group is a family law firm that focuses on divorce and child custody cases. We can assist you in this difficult time. Contact us at (404) 963-9452 to schedule a consultation to discuss how we may be able to help you get out of your unhappy marriage.