A good friend, husband and parent, whom I respect very deeply, sent me an email in response to this post which I asked if I could share, because it was so wonderful:
So… in your blog you do mention how much you appreciate the one book that took into account the loving relationship that began the pregnancy. I want to say how much more important I think that relationship is.
I count my wife and I as very fortunate that we had the experience of being married nearly five years before our first (of four children) was born. We adapted and built a relationship based on just we two. Rocky sometimes (we were young) but it worked. And all through stress, we knew we had something to return to on the other side. When kids are young and needy, it is natural to turn all your attention and devotion toward them. But it is a trap. Without a focus on what you once meant, now mean, and will ever mean to one another, your children will have no secure base.
You, to each other, are more important to your children, than you are separately to your children. I’m not looking up this approximated quote but, “The greatest gift a man can give to his children is to be hopelessly in love with their mother.” And vice versa. Inspire your child to explore the world and find the love you have.