Is a marriage not necessary for healthy development of a child? Or do you believe marriage is a prerequisite for children?

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stacyer's profile pic

Posted on

The healthy development of a child is determined more by the commitment of two people to each other rather than formal marriage. A marriage in which the two partners are constantly arguing or hitting each other is not a good environment for a child. I believe it is more important that child receives support and role models from the support people of the mother rather than emphasizing the concept of marriage. A stable home life in which the child receives the things the child needs (e.g. food, shelter, love, support) is more important that the socially acceptable concept of marriage.

job518's profile pic

Posted on

Maybe it should be a healthy marriage promotes healthy development of a child. Surely we know that marriage alone does not imply that the children will develop in a healthy manner. We all know there are some twisted and very unhealthy marriages out there that could in no way be healthy for children.  Let's be realistic ... marriage today does not imply a lifelong commitment for many people. I think that the effort and dedication required to sustain a healthy marriage would be embedded in one's character such that it would also bleed into the healthy development of their children. Most people that are promiscuous and in unhealthy relationships are carrying characteristics that do not lean towards bringing up a child that is well-rounded and balanced. Others that lean toward a life of being single and more focused on their careers/ desires are just that. They are not usually going to give the dedication, willingly, that it takes...which is why they chose the path they did. Of course there is always the other side...my parents were divorced and I am more "healthily" developed because of it. I probably would have some major issues if I had to deal with all the disagreeing within the walls of my home, rather than not really knowing. Since we did not all live in the same house, I was sheltered from much of the bickering and "bad stuff" that comes along with divorce. Marriage should be a lifelong commitment which should promote healthy development.

cburr's profile pic

Posted on

The key elements in a healthy home environment are love, security, attention and intellectual stimulation.  No particular form of family has a monopoly on satisfying these needs.

It is surely more difficult for a single parent than for a couple, as that one individual must provide everything.  However, as noted above, a traditional nuclear family can be toxic and a single parent home can be wonderful.

I think that a gay/lesbian couple is just as capable of providing for a child's needs as a straight couple.  In such a situation -- or in the case of a single parent -- I do think it is important for there to be good role models of the other gender in the child's life.

 

lorrainecaplan's profile pic

Posted on

This is a provocative topic, and I can see how strong feelings might be expressed.  My own opinion is that in order to respond to the inquiry, we need to separate the developmental aspect from the moral aspect.

From a developmental point of view, it is best for a child to be raised by two parents.  I do not think it matters particularly whether this is a male and a female, two males, or two females.  My own belief is that there are essential aspects to the two-person family.  For example, a two-parent household is a child's first exposure to the idea that there is more than one opinion in the world, more than one way of being, more than one way of interacting, and so on. A child raised by one person has fewer and later exposures to differences in people.  Another reason the two-parent configuration is important is in its ability to model for a child how people are supposed to get along with one another and have empathy for one another.  Compromise and sacrifice are learned behaviors, and the child who is not exposed to these at an early age will have a harder time acquiring these behaviors.

Now, obviously, two parents who are not modeling these behaviors are not of great benefit to a child's development, particularly if they are modeling very undesirable behaviors, and in those situations, from a developmental point of view, having one good model would certainly be better than two bad ones. 

I find I cannot even bring myself to address the morality of the issue.  People are quite rigid about their positions, and this issue is one that is exemplary of the terrible polarization in our country.  But certainly, from a developmental perspective, two parents are the best. 

sharrons's profile pic

Posted on

I think ideally, a child will will thrive in a home with two loving parents.  However, I do not think that just because a child grows up with two parents guarantees that they will be happy and successful. For example, if the childs parents are in a bad marriage, the child would probably be happier if they were raised by just one parent.

Also, their are many single people who are quite capable of raising a healthy well-adjusted child.

mshurn's profile pic

Posted on

A good marriage between responsible adults who love their child and are committed to that child's well being would certainly promote the healthy development of that child. However, it is not marriage that produces this desired effect. It is the behavior and commitment of the parents. If marriage itself guaranteed healthy development in children, there would be far fewer abused, neglected, and damaged children in our society. Marriage is an institution, and institutions are only as good or effective as those who compose them. The bottom line is that healthy, well adjusted children are the products of good parenting. Being married does not make one a good parent.

drmonica's profile pic

Posted on

Marriage is certainly a beneficial state of affairs for raising a child, but it is not a guarantee of a healthy environment. Children raised in two-parent homes are statistically less likely to abuse drugs and alcohol, for example. However, a child raised in a two-parent home that is filled with conflict can suffer greatly, just as a child raised by a single parent is not necessarily doomed to become a high school dropout or a drug user. The reason why marriage is a state-sanctioned institution is because the government wants to encourage two-parent families, as well as tax the institution.

akannan's profile pic

Posted on

This topic will evoke some powerful discussion.  No one would doubt that all children need security and a feeling of safety in order to facilitate a healthy development.  The ideal of a couple in marriage and committed to both one another and the development of their children is vitally important.  However, there are ways for parents who do not find themselves in such an ideal to still provide for a foundation which will advance a healthy development of the child.  While there will be some gaps and a disparity that a child might experience between what should be and what is, there are many parents who are able to bridge this chasm with their children through dialogue, affection, and/ or Herculean efforts to ensure that their children do not suffer because of this disparity.

amy-lepore's profile pic

Posted on

I'm not sure I agree.  For healthy development of a child, the first thing that child needs is security.  Without a two-parent household (two people who are committed to stay together "until death do us part"), that security is threatened.  There is always the possibility that one of the "parents" will leave or find someone else when the marriage commitment hasn't been made.  Does that mean that all marriages work?  Of course not.  People who are married also get divorced and have affairs, but it is not as flippant as if the commitment to stay together through thick and thin had never been made.

xamiixamm28's profile pic

Posted on

For me, marriage is really nescessary because the child needs tender love and care from both parents. A good status of the marriage helps and supports the child to develop a healthy character especially when he always experience an all-love atmosphere thru his/her parents. The child will develop a positive outlook in life because he is living in a very happy family and it also makes the child to be more stronger by the guidance and advices of his supporting and loving parents.

jessymayyo's profile pic

Posted on

I'm not sure I agree.  For healthy development of a child, the first thing that child needs is security.  Without a two-parent household (two people who are committed to stay together "until death do us part"), that security is threatened.  There is always the possibility that one of the "parents" will leave or find someone else when the marriage commitment hasn't been made.  Does that mean that all marriages work?  Of course not.  People who are married also get divorced and have affairs, but it is not as flippant as if the commitment to stay together through thick and thin had never been made.

Just because people arn't married doesnt mean they're going to find other people. They may just not have to monoey to get married, or dont want the hasstle. Once again you're reply suck...

loraaa's profile pic

Posted on

I think..

marriage necessary for healthy development of a child and prerequisite for children...

ngyunhui's profile pic

Posted on

 

 

 

In the US we are confronted over and over again with the claim that marriage is necessary for the health and well-being of children. Just last week, the New York Times magazine ran an article suggesting that while monogamy is not important for marriage, keeping marriage together for the kids IS the most important goal we can have. Quoting gay sexpert Dan Savage, the article argues:

Given the rates of infidelity, people who get married should have to swear a blood oath that if it's violated, as traumatic as that would be, the greater good is the relationship... The greater good is the home created for children. If there are children present, they'll get past it. The cultural expectation should be if there's infidelity, the marriage is more important than fidelity."

thatloser's profile pic

Posted on

My best friend's moms are gay so technically they are not married. She seems heathly to me.

danielle615's profile pic

Posted on

I think a child needs a secure married enviornment. This doesn't necessarily mean you and your spouse get along perfectly because if you try to seem perfect you will give false hope to your child saying that every marraige is perfect. If you are dating and have a kid I also don't think that is very structured but if you love your child equally and show it so much love, no matter what condition you are in that child will be fine; divorced, dating, married, single, or widow.

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