To the editor of THE EAGLE:
Good news. A Harvard trained researcher recently discovered that close to 75 percent of marriages "are making it." Only 20-25 percent end in divorce. Will this fact stop the marriage rate from declining? Or must marriage be the missionary work of our times?
These studies also show that families "active in their faith" are much less likely to divorce. Christianity Today says 31-35 percent of Catholic and Protestant couples are less likely to divorce. Jewish couples are 97 percent less likely to divorce.
For something as important as marriage and children, can’t professionals in family counseling talk to our high schools and speak about "how to get along with other people?". They can learn that bullies are cowards who were once bullied. They can learn the psychology of what kind of behavior works and what doesn’t. They can learn that their family matters.
Marriage often evokes our highest human instincts when part of the intention is to create a safe, loving and enriching home for children. Parenthood can be one of earth’s toughest but wisest teachers.
Caring families were once considered to be the glue that made society strong. Families can appear in many different and varied forms as long as that caring glue is in place. Grandparents are often beacons of unconditional love that the child knows are there for them when sickness or tragedies occur.
Alcohol and drug use are deal-breakers in many marriages. When spouses abuse and harass each other, it is usually the addiction doing the wounding. Who knows how to reason or talk to an addiction? Often it takes a divorce to actually save lives or prevent jail time.
In 2006, The National. Institute of Drug and Alcohol abuse reported that the use of alcohol and drugs cost the nation over $600 billion annually and 80,000 people die each year from their own abuse. Some of these hard facts should be offered to our high schoolers or earlier. Their intelligence and intuition may kick in and offer them another direction.
Whether a family is active in its faith or not, a child can be taught to value being a member of a larger unit, even a school. A child can also be taught that we live in a universe that exerts a caring power far greater than what any of us can imagine, that we are all part of a global family, each human puzzle piece important to the whole. When children know there is an essential purpose for having been born on this planet, they can wake up each morning grateful because of it.