Preserving the Spark in Your Marriage After Becoming Parents
One of the leading questions facing parents is, "How do we keep our relationship alive after kids?" It can be difficult to maintain your love when you're up all night with a baby, juggling end-of-school activities, and working a full-time job. Additionally, finding quiet time for the two of you to relax and talk seems impossible amidst the additional chores like changing diapers. However, despite the challenges, it's not impossible to keep your marriage alive. Choosing love is a conscious decision, and prioritizing it is as important as anything else in your lives. Romance after kids is not only possible but also requires effort from both partners. Here are five suggestions that can help:
Spoil your partner, not your kids: One of the best things you can do for your kids is to put your spouse first. This mindset provides children with a strong sense of safety and security, while also demonstrating what true love looks like. By prioritizing your spouse over your children, you're benefiting both your kids and your partner.
Keep dating: Dating was how you met and fell in love with your partner, so why stop after marriage? Weekly dates are not a luxury; they're a necessity. When you continue dating your partner, you keep the flame of intimacy alive. Intimacy serves as the glue that holds a healthy relationship and marriage together. Keep your dates simple, such as watching a movie at home cuddled on the couch or going out for a quick coffee and croissant. Prioritize your relationship by making time for regular dates.
Touch your partner frequently: Remember how you used to touch your partner all the time when you first fell in love? After kids enter the picture, couples often stop touching as frequently, leading to increased stress and more frequent conflicts. Your kids need to see you touching each other. Don't shy away from public displays of affection. Although your children may act grossed out, secretly they feel more secure when they see their parents being affectionate.
Stay on the same team: Avoid competing with your partner over who does more. Parenting is a challenging job, but it becomes easier when you face it as a team. Replace complaining with praising and encouraging each other. Focus on what's right with each other instead of what's wrong, and you'll develop more respect and appreciation for one another. Make it a habit to ask your partner at least once a day what you can do to help. Offering assistance goes a long way in making your teammate feel supported.
Establish a parenting style you both agree on: Parenting is tough, and it's rare for both partners to start out on the same page. It's essential to communicate your parenting weaknesses and strengths, discussing how you can use your differences to strengthen your family. Strive to stay united in your parenting approach, so your kids cannot manipulate you or drive a wedge between you. While it's natural for parents to have disagreements, try to be honest and communicate privately about your thoughts. Parenting should be seen as an opportunity to work together and strengthen your bond as a couple.
Your love life, like your marriage, will go through transitions, and having children is one of those significant transitions. Choose romance not only on special occasions but every day. By practicing these suggestions, you can fall in love a little bit more each day, actively caring for each other and never giving up on the beautiful union you created when you said, "I do."