An ideal Marriage is never Ideal, because marriage as we know it is a very recent construct and has only been around for less than 300 years. We know Marriage as a union between a Man and a woman who love each other, need each other or are somewhat bound to each other for a long time. Now a days some people consider a union between a man a woman a “traditional Marriage” or a contemporary marriage, people in the pre-Victorian Times had a different concept of Marriage, Usually a dominant male and a submissive female or females, and/or countless mistresses.
Even in the Antebellum South we had a dominant Patriarch and his wife and countless slave mistresses. I think the Ideal marriage is a mutual relationship where both the Male and the Female benefit and in which the children are the main focus of the relationship. Queen Victoria’s reign is where we get the modern concept of marriage from. We can still say that it was common for men to have mistresses during this time. It was although common, but frowned upon slightly. For the man in this relationship it is indeed ideal.
Woman rarely venture out of the house alone and if they do it would be seen as scandalous. An unescorted women out on her own during that period is usually a prostitute. (1) In the South before the Civil war was a very savage place with savage peoples. The white landowning class held most of the power and most of the money. There were very few things a white man could not do during those times. The entire lives of the slaves were controlled by the slave masters. The owners chose what they ate and wore, to who they can be in a relationship with. Individual rights of the slaves were not at all important.
A master could do as he pleased with his slaves, rape, murder, torture, as long as he did not harm another man's property he was fine. (2) Males in these societies had the most powers. They were seldom forbidden from performing heinous acts and far fewer were held to account. Now the perfect Marriage would have to be mutually beneficial, because a relationship can't be sustained if both parties are not happy and fully satisfied. A man should be competent enough and have the initiative to better himself and bring home the bacon. A woman should help the man if he is struggling.
These maybe stereotypes but they exist because men and women are indeed different in their psychology. In my humble opinion if a Man just leeches off his woman, he is no man at all. If a woman wants to be independent and make her own money, then her man should encourage her. It does not matter how many kids you have, as long as you can support them and give them all happy and productive lives you can consider yourself a good father, or mother. A relationship more than likely leads to kids and I think that an Ideal relationship should be like buttresses for the kids well being.
If your kid is not doing well or is being bad you are doing something wrong. If you are a single parent you should find someone who is a food mother/father figure for the kid. I personally don't date single mothers, dating a single mom is like finishing someone elses saved game. So in conclusion I think that you should do whatever it takes to be in a good relationship which not only benefits you but is a good bedrock for future children. You should not be in a relationship who can't support themselves and you.