Tuesday, June 23, 2009

On Jon and Kate

I've been in a funk all day, and I believe Jon and Kate are to blame.

Just in case you've managed to escape all of the Jon and Kate hype, I'll get you up to speed. Go ahead and skip the next paragraph if this is old news. It's like a choose-your-own-adventure, isn't this fun?

So Jon and Kate have a reality show on TLC called "Jon & Kate + Eight" which chronicles the real-life joys and struggles of raising eight kids - a set of twin girls (age 8?) and also sextuplets (3 boys, 3 girls, age 5). Trouble has been brewing for the couple in the last few months. On last night's show they announced that they are separated, and actually filed for divorce yesterday.

I'm not going to go on and on about this, but I just need to get some things off my chest so that hopefully I can move on and not let their situation get me down any longer.

The first time I visited Gary's parents' house, there was a small wooden sign in the bathroom that said, "The best gift a mother can give her kids is to love their father." I'm so thankful that Gary and I both grew up believing and witnessing that.

It was quite evident in the interview with Jon and Kate that their kids are first in their family. That sounds so positive and innocent and hard to find fault with. But it's so dangerous. Of course parents should love their kids. OF COURSE. But a husband and wife need to love each other first.

In last night's show, Jon said, "it's not good for us to be arguing in front of our kids." While I don't believe in regularly having blow-outs in front of our kids, I think it's okay for them to occasionally see Gary and I have problems. But what they also see is how we apologize to each other and make things right. I can safely say that their world has never been shaken by seeing us disagree.

Kate said, the separation/divorce is "necessary because [her] goal is peace for the kids." Peace is never going to be achieved when parents don't love each other and the family is broken. My heart breaks for Jon, Kate and all of the kids.

Both Jon and Kate justify their decision to end their marriage based on the fact that it's a good decision for their kids. No. No it isn't.

They repeatedly talked about how it's all about the kids. I think that's why they're in this pickle. They even referred to their home as "their house" - referring to the kids. Jon said they bought it for them - "the security, the room, the land... all for them." I think they need to worry less about the security the house has to offer and worry more about the security that a loving marriage and family has to offer. That's where the kids will find real security - in watching a mommy and daddy who can't imagine life without the other.

I remember reading an article called Truly, Madly, Guiltily several years ago that received a LOT of negative feedback. The author, Ayelet Waldman was chastised for admitting that she loves her husband more than her kids. People were so upset with her claim, calling her an uncaring and bad mother. It's an excellent article. It's always stuck with me, because I'm also one of the weirdos who loves her husband more than her kids.

But I have a confession.

Gary and I are each having an affair.

While Ayelet may have been scrutinized for admitting she loves her husband more than her kids, I'll admit that I love the Lord first, even before Gary. Gary would say the same thing.

I think there's just an order to things.

No matter what comes our way, Gary and I married almost ten years ago on the premise that NOTHING would break us apart. We made a covenant before the Lord and before our family and friends that isn't ours to break. The only way we can keep it is by loving the Lord first, and then each other. Loving our kids and ignoring our marriage might keep our kids happy temporarily, but it sure isn't going to do anything to strengthen that covenant.

I'm sad for Jon and Kate and the eight kids who are being dragged through this mess. I'm going to continue to pray for them, and can only hope that they come to their senses and cancel the show so they can deal with this, without all of the world peering in, hoping to watch them fail. Isn't that why the ratings have been so high?

Hang in there, Jon, Kate, and your cute little eight.


  1. Great post, Angie. I agree with everything you said. And you said it very well.

  2. What a scandelous love, Angie! The kind we all should have...
    The order in which we should have it...
    And just right.
    Good words, friend!

  3. We were just talking about the order of love in a family at bible study today...God, hubby, then kids! Your post was great and so true.

  4. This is an awesome and much needed post Angie!

    I'm so ticked every time I see them now. . .and yes, I'm very, very sad for the kids.

    BTW, the whole "it's better for the kids" nonsense is complete bull. I find it very hard to believe that's the real reason they're separating.

    And, as you said, even if that's how they really feel, it's totally misguided.

    Only when Christ is first can everything else take it's proper place. And, yes, after things are in their place, you love the kids by loving their father 2nd and their Father first.



  5. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  6. I would also add one more person to that list. I believe that you have to truly know and love yourself before you can genuinely give that gift to anyone else (partner, children, or anyone). Last night's show was the only episode I've ever seen, and I didn't see much self-reflection, self-accountability, or self-love. Very sad.

  7. Angie -- I just read the article you linked and found it inspiring. I grew up the same way you did and feel very said for Jon and Kate.

    With a six-month-old tow I am still in the throes of babyhood, but look forward to the returning passion in every area.

  8. An Affair? How scandalous!

    Great post.

  9. Amen, sister! I agree with you. Even in Christian circles, I've heard the kids come first. But they don't. It's God, then Matt.

  10. It is hard for those who "have" a God-centered universe to understand those that "have not" one. The have nots will look internally and examine their own conscious for answers and guidance. Their actions will not make sense to those that have. The haves will look to His word for the next steps to take, the path to follow. With this in mind, TLC is using recent events for their own ratings. Jon and Kate are using it to continue their own personal gains, and I offer the following as proof. They did not file for divorce until Monday, the same day the episode aired in which they admitted that they were filing for separation because they did not want to preempt the episiode and lower the ratings. That paperwork was not drafted Monday and the episode was not filmed Monday and edited Monday and the whole thing did not fall into place Monday. It was planned out that way with a little TLC. It is unfortunate, because if anyone involved in this train wreck "had it" they would have pulled the plug on this personal tragedy "for the sake of the kids." And as those that get it, we need to pray for all involved that they may get it soon.

  11. I just stumbled across your blog through links upon links and am really enjoying reading.

    I totally agree with you on J&K - "the kids come first" line is exactly what has got them into this mess in the first place. I adore my children. But my relationship with my husband comes before them. And my relationship with my savior before that.

    Thank you for articulating it so well.

  12. Great post Angie. My husband and I actually watched the show Monday night together (I've watched it off and on over the last couple of years). It sparked some great conversations between the two of us. I've always said that when my kids are grown and have moved on I don't want to look up at my husband and say, "Who are you?" It is so important to have a relationship with your spouse... it is sometimes very difficult and life gets busy, but you must set priorities and stick with it.

  13. I'll add just one more thing to your post, which I agree with entirely...

    If Jon were really there for the kids, then what is the deal with suddenly going out and buying a 2 door sports car that his kids don't fit in? And then, being out late at a bar while the kids are home with a nanny because Kate is on a book tour? And, suddenly he shows up with a pair of diamond studs in both ears on the last episode? And, over the weekend he's looking at apartments which are not only in "Trump Tower" (very expensive and not big enough for 8 kids), but aren't even in the same STATE as his children? I find it hard to believe he's in it for the kids...I think he's having more of a midlife crisis.

    I'm with you on them getting refocused and realizing that the priority should be their marriage, and not their kids. Kids don't need a mansion to live in or fancy clothes...Lord knows I didn't have any of that. But having two parents who love each other and love God are the most important things that could ever be done for their children. I'm 32 years old, and my parents have been married for 33 years. I can say that they honestly still love each other, and wouldn't go a day without the other if they didn't have to. And if my parents suddenly filed for divorce, at 32 years old, it would absolutely shatter my world. I can only imagine how those small children feel.

  14. Wow - well and boldly said Angie. Thanks for sharing your thoughts and convictions...such a right yet unpopular perspective. Great reminders of the 2 wonderful gifts we have to offer our children that are above loving them yet in all reality ARE all about loving them fully - as we love Jesus and thus reflect Him to them and we love the one who God gave us her eon earth to most reflect that beautiful relationship we have with Christ.
    Thanks Angie - I love your heart!!

  15. I can't tell you how much I love this post.

  16. I am so with you. I posted about this a few weeks ago because I was so daggum upset about it. I never get caught up in stuff like this but I guess I was so sad because I thought they could/would be different. I can't imagine going through all of this on national television. My heart hurts for them, especially the kids. I wish they would cancel the show and go seek Christian councling.

    I am in totally agreement about the correct order of love...God, husband, children.


Thanks for visiting! And thanks a bunch for commenting!


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...