Posted by: chrisdavis | January 2, 2012

Reflections of a Homeschool Pioneer, Priority #1: No Child Marriage Left Behind

I promised to begin the New Year thinking about my nearly 30 years’ involvement in homeschooling and share what I believe are the most important truths every homeschooler must consider.

And, I promised to share both from my successes and my failures.

I also promised to try to put these truths into some sort of priority order. So, here goes #1 (this may seem like an unusual #1, but I suggest that you consider it carefully)…

When I ask parents what they believe is most important for their children to learn, no adult has ever responded, “I want my children to grow up with a really healthy idea of what a good marriage looks like.”

Allow me to be blunt:

Homeschool parents often forget that their children are not the most important individuals in their home.

Every one of us has a finite amount of time for relationships. Homeschool parents tend to focus on their children: we fret over curricula, we worry about reading, we plan and we plan and we plan some more. Then, we homeschool. We pour ourselves into our kids.

Our spouses get what’s left over, if there is anything left over. Bad idea.

How would your children characterize their parents’ relationship? Do they happily roll their eyes at your show of affection? Do they have to sacrifice some parental time because Dad and Mom truly believe time spent with one another is more important than time spent with their kids?

If you are homeschooling, your kids are probably around you most of the time. They watch and learn—not so much by what you say as what you do (or don’t do).

Here’s a scary thought for some (and a positive thought for others): Your children will probably relate to their spouses in much the same way you relate to yours.



  1. Excellent reminder! I’m looking forward to more of your insights as usual, Chris. I have a sensitive thumb on the pulse of homeschooling.

    • in the immortal words of Charlie Brown, “Oh good grief!”

      YOU have the sensitive thumb, not “I”.

      • Thanks. More coming soon…

  2. We are the first teachers of life as we pattern it for them. The children have been entrusted to us and it goes far far beyond academics. Huge job and it will drive you to the feet of Jesus. Great article, Chris.

    • Zanetta: Hope your 2012 draws us all closer to our Father.

  3. I do agree with you, but unfortunately throught some bad choices of mine, I have never been married. I was with my son’s dad for about 5 years and had my wonderful son as a result.

    This is a difficult issue especially when at church they preach about fatherhood. I can’t help but wonder what my son is thinking, since his dad has chosen not to be in his life (or VERY minimal involvement).

    I would urge the married people out there to say special prayers for the single parents, no matter how they got that way.

    Thank you for the article. I do agree and I do so wish that years ago I would have been wiser and not chosen my own route in life. But, I am forgiven and God is wonderful to me still.

    • Cindy, thank you for the transparent nature of your comment. I can say, along with you, “…I do so wish that years ago i would have been wiser….But, I am forgiven and God is wonderful to me still.”

      We need less judgement and more prayers for one another, especially for those children whose parent(s) choose not to be in their lives (or are not for whatever reason).

      Having grown up without a father, and having lost my mother as a young teen, I pray that every Mom & Dad value their relationship with one another above all else (except, of course, for their personal relationship with their heavenly Father).

      Again,thanks for your comments. CHRIS

  4. A good reminder, Chris. And boy, I get what you’re saying. It’s easy to have a child-centric home but thankfully….we’re getting this. (It only took about 17 years. Ha.)

    I hope you write more frequently….I always love hearing your insights.

    Cindy- I too appreciate your transparency. Single parents are our greatest unsung heroes. Thanks for sharing.

    • I have embarked on a series of sorts. We’ll see what comes out of it.

  5. wise words.
    the marriage relationship is foundational – especially (as I’ve heard you say often) for how sons treat their mothers…
    looking forward to reading more.

    • Good to hear from you, Rob. When are you joining me in Israel???

  6. Good article! We always joke with our children when they make faces and groan when my husband and I show affection to each other. We ask if they’d rather witness the alternative…stops their complaining every time 🙂

    • Love it, Catherine! Keep it up…

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