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5 big ways children change the lives of married couples

Posted 8:03 a.m. Monday

Tying the knot and getting hitched is one thing. Having children once you’re married is another.

Some stories have been written in the past about how children may be making people less happy (they increase stress, destroy schedules and change your lifestyle, reports say). In fact, The Los Angeles Times reported that Americans are having less kids because they fear their marriages will crumble under all the stress.

But that’s not the whole story. According to the U.S. Census, there are more than 115 million families in the United States. And those parents couldn’t be happier. A report from LiveScience found parents are typically happier than nonparents because they find happiness in seeing their kids grow up and succeed in daily activities and school, among other reasons.

Here are five ways having a baby can bring positivity to a parent’s life.

Children will freshen up your marriage

Having children will certainly change a marriage, but that change isn’t always bad. According to Focus on the Family, having children will challenge parents to make decisions about their children, which will require critical thinking and compromise between two spouses.

Bringing children into the home will cause a little more stress, but married couples will find more purpose and drive, Focus on the Family’s Steve and Candice Watters explained. Whatever was stale before will become vibrant and colorful.

“What couples don't hear enough … is that letting their love spill over into a new life can give them a fresh sense of purpose in their marriage,” the Watters wrote for Focus on the Family. “Parenting requires couples to adjust expectations about their sex life, their sleep patterns and their ability to embark on last-minute dates, but the parenting mission can mature and sweeten a marriage over the years when a couple commits to do it 'as unto the Lord.'"

When dads bond with children, the marriage is strong

We’ve heard before that a successful marriage is dependent on how happy the woman in the marriage is. That’s something dads can help with by bonding more with the children and taking on some responsibility.

According to Health Day, women in marriages want their fathers to be more involved in raising their children, and part of that includes bonding with them and instructing them about household chores. And when children do those chores, it makes for a happier wife.

And as mentioned earlier, a happy wife is a happy marriage.

Children make us better

Children unite parents, both of who are looking to raise children the right way. By uniting, it’s making married couples into stronger people and helping them grow, according to Psychology Today.

“Rather than resigning yourself to the dissatisfaction predicted in the longitudinal studies, you could, like some I've people seen over the years, decide to embrace children as an opportunity for self-growth,” Psychology Today reported. “You could use building a family as a chance to feel closer.”

You'll be more productive

According to a study from the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, parents who have two or more kids are more productive at work. The study looked at the lives of 10,000 parents and how their productivity increased when they had more than just one child.

The study said parents often slow down when they have one child in order to raise them best. But as they have more children, they tend to be more productive since their previous older children can help them raise their newborns.

"It's all about timing," Christian Zimmermann, one of the study's authors, said to TODAY.com. "It's really when the children are younger that there is an impact, but if you consider the whole career of the person, then on average, the person [who has two or more children] is doing better."

You'll help fight child homelessness

America is at an all-time high for child homelessness. But parents can help solve that problem.

According to a study the National Center on Family Homelessness, single parenthood is one of the drivers of child homelessness in the country, mostly because it's hard for a single parent to afford a home and raise kids. But married couples tend to make more money and be more productive, which cuts down on the amount of homeless children in the country.

"Why would marriage have such an effect on child poverty?" asked Leslie Ford of The Daily Signal. "Because two parents working together generally can support a family better than one parent working alone. Marriage keeps parents, particularly fathers, and their resources connected to their children. Also, married households bring in significantly more money not only because there are two parents, but because married men tend to earn more and work more."

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