Give Your Children the Gift of a Good Relationship

Parents swinging child at beachIf you have a good relationship with your parents, does that mean that you will have a good relationship with your spouse? Likewise, if you get along great with your spouse, does it ensure that you will get along with the rest of your extended family? And perhaps most importantly for parents or potential parents, does the relationship you have with your romantic partner predict what type of relationship you will have with your children? That was the question at the center of a recent article. “We wanted to see how romantic relationships between parents might be associated with what kind of parents they are,” said Abigail Millings, lead researcher of a recent study from the Society for Personality and Social Psychology. Millings looked at 125 couples raising children between the ages of 7 and 8 and assessed how responsive they were to their partners and how this predicted parenting behaviors.

She found that in general, being emotionally in tune with and aware of those around you can help strengthen relationships. Parents who noticed their partners’ moods and emotional responses were more inclined to identify emotional needs in their children. For children, the benefits of positive parenting were especially evident psychologically, academically, and socially. The impact was particularly profound when fathers demonstrated high levels of emotional and physical involvement with their children. This effect also occurred indirectly through the relationship the father had with the mother.

Overall, the evidence shows that high levels of engagement and responsiveness between parents can lead to higher levels of emotional responsiveness and engagement between parents and their children. It’s highly unlikely that a couple will have children before they have a relationship. And that’s a good thing. Because according to these findings, learning adaptive and supportive relationship skills is a gift that can strengthen not only your relationship with your spouse, but relationships for generations to come.

Collins, Lois M. “Good Romantic Partners Are Likely to Be Good Parents, Study Says.” (n.d.): n. pag. Deseret News. 6 Jan. 2013. Web. 2013.

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  • Cindy


    January 18th, 2013 at 11:56 PM

    Relationships are not only interrelated but also good dynamics between partners can help them collaborate better as parents.That is bound to be beneficial to the child and for the relationship between the child and each of the parents.

  • kylie


    January 19th, 2013 at 4:24 AM

    I never saw my own parents have a stable relationship and honestly I haven’t had one in my own life either. How will I ever be able to give that to my own kids one day?

  • Cynthia Tough

    Cynthia Tough

    January 22nd, 2013 at 2:22 PM

    I know I blew it as a parent fought all the time, violent arguments with a husband who was an alcoholic verbally and mentally yelled at in front of our two kids we have all suffered with health problems now. It makes no sense to me now precious time with family lost now I need to seek treatment for my son I hope I can stop this from continuing into his future family.

  • Kate McGeever

    Kate McGeever

    January 21st, 2013 at 2:03 AM

    The relationship between the parents is also a role model for the child and how they will have relationships both when they are children and also later on when they are adults. If that relationship is a healthy one they will learn how to have healthy relationships from the very start.

  • Monica


    January 21st, 2013 at 3:52 PM

    I can’t tell you how much it means to me and has meant to my own children that I have a good relationship with my parents which I think has led to a great relationship between me and my own kids. I am able to give them love and support because I was taight how to give and receive both from my family grwoing up. My husband did not have that so it has been a little harder for him but he has come to see what a wonderful difference this closeness has and he only wishes that he could go back and have that now. It makes me feel stronger as a mom and much more confident in my own abilities to have had such wonderful parents that I can model my own behavior after and know that I always have someone to trust that I can turn to.

  • Colton


    January 22nd, 2013 at 12:35 AM

    A good relationship is so important for a child..My parents almost hated each other but did not divorce.They hardly spent any time together and all I saw growing up was there was either mom or dad but never both of them.That resulted in their being no family time and it hindered my growth.I have vowed never to subject my own children to such a situation and I hope and pray I can provide them with a much better family time through a good relationship with my partner.

  • Cynthia Tough

    Cynthia Tough

    January 22nd, 2013 at 2:14 PM

    I can understand what you went through unfortunately I was a parent who remained in an abusive relationship and now I see the emotional physical and mental effect it has had on both my children especially my son. I am hoping I can get him treatment. I regret not leaving someone who was an alcoholic who was violent toward mainly my son and myself, my daughter is doing ok so far.

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