Our Statement of Values
What we believe about Relationships
- We form, grow, and live our lives in the context of relationships and community.
- Healthy relationships foster health and wellness.
- We all need education about how to have healthy relationships.
- Success in our relationships is how we will ultimately evaluate our lives.
What we believe about Marriage
- All marriages have rough periods and need community support.
- Healthy, life-long marriage has strong value for individuals, families, organizations and communities.
- Life-long commitment is especially difficult in today's throwaway culture.
- Marital commitment brings obligations to work on a troubled marriage before giving up.
- Children have an important stake in the health and endurance of their parents' marriage.
What we believe about Divorce
- Divorce is usually an attempt to solve a problem that people think can’t be solved in any other way.
- Divorce not only splits up a marriage, it splits children, families and communities.
- Some divorces are necessary in order to prevent further harm in a destructive relationship.
- Some divorces are ultimately unavoidable because one party decides on divorce despite the wishes of the other party.
- Some people behave destructively enough over a long time that they lose their claim on their spouse’s commitment.
- However, many of today’s divorces could be prevented if both parties took steps to work on their marriage before it was too late.
What we believe about Parenting
- Parenting is about the quality of the relationships parents develop with their children.
- All parents deserve the chance to learn the concepts, skills and strategies to be effective parents.
- Parents need to work together for the benefit of their children.
- Divorce does not absolve parents from the responsibility to collaborate in the interests of their children.
What we believe about Children
- Children have two fundamental relationship needs from parents - love and nurturance & structure and discipline.
- Children do best living in intact families with both biological parents in the home.
- Relationships with both parents are important to children's identity, self-esteem and success.
- Parents may divorce one another, but children shouldn't be expected to divorce a parent.
What we believe about Healing
- Human beings have the capacity to move past anxiety, mistrust, and hostility and relate to each other from their best selves.
- Healing needs to address the needs of the whole person, including their relationships and spirituality.
- Restoring a marriage must not come at the expense of one of the partners.
- When both spouses devote themselves fully with proper help to restoring their marriage to health, they can usually make it.
- All people need healing professionals from time to time.
What we believe about Spirituality
- Love and fairness must go hand in hand.
- Healthy spirituality means having healthy attitudes and behaviors.
- Spirituality is based in our capacity for relationships and connectedness.
- The willingness and ability to forgive is essential to personal and relationship health.
- Spirituality is how we live out our values, beliefs and faith.
*Several sections of this Statement of Values are adapted from the Minnesota Couples on the Brink Project, University of Minnesota.