Let’s be honest. The relationship we have with our spouse is different than before we had children. Our time and energy is split, we have more responsibilities, and being intimate can sometimes feel like just another chore on the “To do list”.
Although it is true that our relationship is different, this doesn’t mean we shouldn’t strive to make it better; to work on our intimacy and make time to enjoy each other’s company, like we used to… without the kids.
The relationship between parents is the number one relationship that determines how children will experience their own relationships in the future, with co-workers, friends and spouses. Children look to their parents to see how people communicate with each other, how they show and accept love and how they resolve problems. For this reason, marriage must be made a priority. We must nurture it and learn ways to improve it.
How do we do this?
There are a few areas to look at:
How do you feel about yourself? Do you feel like you are healthy and in relatively good shape? Do you dress as you used to or are you feeling a bit frumpy lately?
Taking care of ourselves is often the most effective way to give us energy, make us feel sexy again and feel like we want to work on our marriage.
Do you schedule in regular date nights with your spouse, either inside or outside the home? Enjoying each other’s company is so important. Remember what you loved doing together and schedule it! Book the restaurant, find the hiking trail, play scrabble, cook a meal together, go for coffee and a dessert or just go for a walk and talk. Whatever it is be sure to schedule at least one date night per month.
Communication. Nothing breeds anger and resentment more than silence. It’s very important to constantly talk; talk about parenting issues, household issues, feelings, etc. An extremely useful resource is the book called, “The Five Love Languages” This is the best book my husband and I have found to help us figure out how each of us likes to be loved. It is, in my opinion, a must read for all couples.
Although life is busier with children, we must always remember that parents are the core of a family. Nurture your relationship well and give it the attention and focus it deserves. You and your children will be happier if you do.