Our understanding of healthy relationships comes from watching our parents. Asking a child “what is marriage” is a revealing experience. Children tend to see the basics in things much better than adults, and they are always observing and learning.
This adorable little boy, Jesse, must have happy parents (even more brownie points to them for giving him the opportunity to be on Sesame Street!). The first thing he notes is that married people kiss and hug. They show each other affection every day. Physical signs of affection are essential to a young child’s development and is their most basic understanding of love. Physical intimacy continues to be a core human need and is part of the foundation of healthy relationships. Give your spouse hugs and kisses. Cuddle up, stroke her hair, take his hand and give it a squeeze. Physicality shouldn’t always be a prelude to sex, but it is certainly a part of sexless marriage help. Touch (all kinds) is therapeutic and should be part of your everyday interactions. Scientific studies have shown that touching and intimacy release chemicals in your brain that promote relaxation, warm feelings, and bonding with your partner.
Grover has some great insights about marriage, too. He points out (and Jesse agrees) that marriage is about living together, being friends, and helping each other. While the online marriage counseling field often goes into detail about marriage skills and our smallest interactions, sometimes it’s helpful to step back to think about the basics. Kissing, hugging, friends, helping.
How might your kids answer the question “What is marriage”? Why not try asking them–it could be very revealing.