Drawn by Fire: Those Darn Kids

Cartoon of parents going trick-or-treating with their kids
Parents with kids going out for Halloween
Paul Combs/Drawn by Fire

From Mike and Anne Gagliano:

Children are indeed a blessing that adds immeasurable sweetness to any home. But they are not the structure nor the foundation that holds it up—your marriage is. Your relationship needs to be solid or the house may fall apart. A strong marriage is the best gift you can give your children. To do this, remember that you are a spouse first, a parent second; never relegate your marriage to a lesser position for any reason, not even for the kids, or you risk losing both. It is crucial that you prioritize how your time is managed and ensure the most important stuff wins. Always keep your first family first, and within that choice, keep your first relationship first.

Tips to Keep the Fire Burning

Save some resources for dates, time to be together, and energy for passion. If you neglect your marriage as you pour all your best efforts into the kids, you may lose each other along the way. Nobody wants to be married to somebody’s ‘mom’ or ‘dad;’ that’s not sexy. Remember that you’re a spouse too. The kids aren’t meant to be your best friend, fulfill your dreams, or make you complete; that’s your soulmate’s job.

Keep in mind:

  1. Your bedroom should be viewed as yours; put a lock  on the door for intimate time.
  2. Do not overschedule the kids. Allow for family time.
  3. Be a united front; let your children see that you stand together and aren’t easily divided.
  4. Do your best to keep arguments private and away  from your kids.
  5. Divorce impacts children in profoundly negative, life-altering ways.

Learn more about Anne and Mike’s book, Challenges of the Firefighter Marriage.

Relationships by Fire Calendar


34 Lessons…34 Years, Part 1 | Part 2

To see more Drawn By Fire cartoons or to purchase prints, go to:


Drawn by Fire: The Mask

Drawn by Fire: The Elephant in the Room

Drawn by Fire: Political Inferno

Drawn by Fire: Den of Vipers

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