Roland Warren is the President of the National Fatherhood Initiative, and he says that there is a clear difference between the way women and men think of their roles after they get married and have a family.
"I think, frankly, for men the 'wife and the kids' is all one package. We don't separate that out," Roland says. "That said, from a relationship standpoint, one of the relationships has to come first, it's just the reality of it. … There's a perception I'm hearing here that somehow you can wait [to work on your marriage.] Strong marriages are like strong muscles. If you don't exercise them, they atrophy."
Roland also says instead of looking at children as the building blocks of marriage, couples should focus on the primary relationship that provides children security—the marriage. "When a husband and wife work well together, they create this kind of basket, which provides security for children," Roland says. "That's the primary relationship. And I think if you can balance yourself from the perspective of putting that relationship first, building on that, that's the foundation that gives your kids security that they need."