Posted: 1:41 pm Thursday, July 17th, 2014

Your kid is the reason for your infidelity. Really? 

By Gracie Bonds Staples

Rather than losing your spouse to the 7-year itch, you might need to worry about losing him or her once you add a kid to the picture or so says a new study.

The Modern Love Report, commissioned by USA Network  and released today, reveals that once baby is on board, parents are far more likely than non-parents to abandon ship. Parenthood is arguably the driver of infidelity – 55 percent of couples married with children say “marriage is more difficult than I thought it would be,” vs. only 34 percent of childless married couples that feel the same. The MODERN LOVE REPORT was conducted in conjunction with the premiere of USA’s new original drama series, SATISFACTION, which examines marriage at its midpoint through the lens of one couple who grapple with the question “What do you do when having it all is not enough?” The series premieres at 10 p.m. tonight on the USA Network.

But seriously, is your kid ever to blame for a marriage gone bad?

25 comments
GrantD
GrantD

I'm not sure I follow... First, provide me with your definition of "infidelity" and then tell me what, exactly, that has to do with a "marriage gone bad"? Feel free to offer your viewpoints but, to me, infidelity is when one, or both, spouses find a little "extra on the side" without the other spouse knowing or condoning. 

Back on topic, however, I simply cannot fathom why kids should be blamed either way. 

I realize you are the designated writer since Theresa apparently cannot fulfill the blog 100% of the time but the title of the blog vis-a-vis the body seem non sequitur. Losing someone to a "7-year itch" goes far beyond simple infidelity.

zanderae
zanderae

Whether or not it's "the child's fault" is pretty much beside the point.  The fact that a child exists is sometimes too much for people to deal with, long-term.  Let's face it, y'all, parenthood surely has its unparalleled joys, but at the same time it's a heavy burden.


I can't tell you how many people have approached my husband - or me - and have said very quietly and with awe in their voices, "you didn't have kids?  I wish I hadn't....I mean, I love my kids, but....."

There's a whole lot of regret out there.  I know there are certain folks who post on this website who will slap me down for saying this, because god knows that every sperm is sacred and that every child is wanted and valued.  Yeah, OK, y'all think what you want to.  We all want to believe that All Families Are Good and that Children are Always a Well-Timed Gift of God.  But, at the same time, we all know that's not always the case.


I know perfectly well that I would not have been a good mom.  Period.  I never wanted to be a mom. Period.  So I'm not.  And my husband basically raised his younger brother, so he had the experience of watching a child grow, mature, flower.  And, having said that, we know people who can't imagine their lives without their adorable kids.  But, at the same time, we know people (as y'all likely do, whether some of you admit it or not) who got into something they thought they could deal with, but they struggle with it.  Most of these folks do the right thing.  A few of them don't.


I'm not about to wade into the treacherous waters about whether one should suffer for the rest of one's life for a mistake (with the exception of murder, rape, etc - none of which is germane to the subject here).  Since there's another life at issue here, answers are not easy.  But I can say, straight up and without fear of contradiction, that the arrival of children - innocent though they may be - can kill a marriage or a commitment.

Ralph-43
Ralph-43

If the responsibility of children, the decrease in female sexuality, and the financial pressures drive the husband (presumably more frequently the husband) away, then there is a major problem with education, maturity, and thoughtfulness prior to undertaking the pregnancy. Those who block birth-control and therapeutic abortion have to take some of the blame in forcing unwanted pregnancies and unwanted child care.  I think we all recognize a resistance to accepting maturity among the millennials and hope that they will avoid pregnancy and creation of a dysfunctional family unless they have though this through completely.  Or - maybe we should accept the new morality - that does not frown on infidelity but may actually admire certain aspects - a topic for future discussion.  

parbogey
parbogey

Ok.....this is really a lame topic even for this blog and I usually enjoy most of Theresa's blogs....

PrimeMinisterIV
PrimeMinisterIV

But seriously, is your kid ever to blame for a marriage gone bad?


I can easily see how this can happen.  Marriage is a challenge.  It is even more challenging when a child enters the picture.  ALL marriages change, for better, worse or somewhere in between,  when a couple has a child.  There are issues/problems that arise or escalate ONLY when a child enters the mix.  Sadly, many couples don't survive after the change.  

thekimmer
thekimmer

'Your kid is the reason for infidelity'  'is your kid ever to blame for a marriage gone bad'.


That is a very misleading way to characterize this.  I suspect you know that and did so just as a hook.


Its worse than posing a question if banks are to blame for bank robberies or women are the reason for rape.

FRMRTCHR
FRMRTCHR

The children themselves are not to blame for breaking up marriages.  It is usually the parents' attitudes to the children that break up them up.  Parents are responsible for their children and must devote a great deal of time to rearing them.  But the children should not become the most important people in the family (unless illness dictates that they become the focal point for a while.)  The husband and wife should keep in mind that they are the two most important people in the family and spend time nurturing that relationship.  Without that nurturing and emphasis on the marital relationship, that marriage is pretty much doomed.

Claver
Claver

When a couple has a baby, they BOTH need to step up their game.  If neither, or only one, does then trouble is ahead - whether its infidelity or simply "falling out of love." Successful relationships require work and effort.  They both need to spend time focusing on the child; but, they also both need to make some time and extra effort for each other.

Laurie1113
Laurie1113

Dear Gracie, sometimes it's best NOT to poke the crazies right before the weekend.  Now they'll all be stirred up.

LogicalDude
LogicalDude

(Devil's Advocate)


Of course the child is to blame!  Okay, not personally, but generally. 

(Woman)

That baby pops out and it changes the woman.  She has that glow. Hormonal changes cause different curves to be enhanced. She is actually attractive, but doesn't feel that way.  She gets extra attention and she likes it.  She gets attention and a Flirt a couple times and BAM.  Infidelity. 

(Man)

That baby pops out and the guy is now less important in the woman's life. She is focused focused focused on this little baby and he's not number one anymore.  He's still happy, and when he goes out, he gets noticed and flirts coming his way. BAM. Infidelity. 


Now, if couples were open about it all and understanding, then divorce doesn't have to be the result.  

(me? Nope, no kids)


Rory_Bellows
Rory_Bellows

What about couples with no children? Do you blame the pets? That Falcons 4 - 12 season? Halloween on a Sunday?

TechMom1
TechMom1

There's a difference between correlation and causation. Is there a correlation between having kids and marriages that end in divorce? Yep. Are the kids necessarily the cause? Nope. 


A reader
A reader

A child is not to blame.  A mother becoming "too focused on the children" is not to blame.  "Not enough sex" is not to blame.


The person, male or female, who chooses to selfishly get their ego stroked by a third person is ENTIRELY to blame!!  Stop blameshifting people!


Often the person who has the affair is immature and narcissistic.  You add a child into the mix and suddenly the responsibility of  taking care of another human being overwhelms them and they split.  Unfortunately, love is blind so the other responsible parent does not realize what a bad idea it was to have a child with the narcissistic spouse (or partner) until it is too late.


And to answer the question “What do you do when having it all is not enough?” BOO HOO.  What do you do?  You grow up and you handle the responsibilities that you signed up for and you stop complaining.  Or you do not and you split and you become an absent parent and a deadbeat parent because "living the life and having fun" is more important than raising children to become responsible adults.

AtlantaMom
AtlantaMom

Perhaps the mom doesn't mind taking care of her husband while it's just the two of them.  But....once the children come along she expects a partner and not another child.

87GaDawg
87GaDawg

The question is whether the child is to blame.  Obvious.  No.  The child is not to blame.  The child didn't ask to be born.  The child didn't pick the parents.  The child is not to blame at all.


Now, what is to blame?  Lots of reasons.  Many times its just how men and women view sex differently.  Men often want the quickie with no emotion behind it.  Many women want the opposite.  Having a child doesn't create the problem, but it might expose it.  Still, not the child's fault.

skegeeace
skegeeace

Well, I guess we should all be childless and end the human race while we're at it. ::Eyeroll:: Excuses, excuses.

Moe_Green
Moe_Green

Wasn't there a rumor at one time that Theresa was having an affiar?

ByteMe
ByteMe

Really, people, isn't this what baby sitters and back seats are for?? ;)

jarvis1975
jarvis1975

"Blame"....I don't think you can blame a child.  It's not like they were intentionally brought into the relationship, but I can definitely see how a child can be a source of stress.  


The relationship is never the same, not that I think it's bad, but marriage is definitely different once the family consists of more than the husband and wife.

Lord Humungus
Lord Humungus

Absolutely. I've witnessed many couples who have children and the husband basically becomes a paycheck while the mother devotes all her attention to the children. Some people let them selves go physically. I know several women in my neighborhood where they simply cannot carry on an adult conversation about anything non-child related. And of course, how many people do we know that allow their kids to sleep in the parents bed with them? That's no excuse for cheating, it is what it is.

The majority of people are simply not too bright - lets be honest. If they can't figure out life how can they figure out marriage?

catmom-scout
catmom-scout

I can see this. If one spouse (typically the mom) becomes so focused on the children that she ignores her husband (not just physically, but emotionally), then I could see where it could lead to infidelity. Obviously, that doesn't make it right. But, yes, kids do change the relationship. Couples who are childfree by choice theoretically have more time to focus on each other. Of course, that's not to say CF couples don't grapple with infidelity too.

It's more complex than you're making it. It's not black and white.



AlreadySheared
AlreadySheared

@A reader And there we are.  Mom forgets that her husband comes first (and yes his wife comes first for the husband), fixates on her new child, and then decides husband is ENTIRELY to blame when he steps out for the attention/affection he no longer gets @home.

RichardKPE
RichardKPE

@A reader Everyone take note.  This person has perfectly summed up the attitude that causes infidelity (albeit unintentionally).