Do you find it surprising that the majority of couples with young children (especially infants through pre- school age) experience the least marital satisfaction? It makes sense, right? There’s the exhaustion factor plus the countless adjustments and demands that come from just being a parent. Sex life takes a hit and time for each other becomes a scarce commodity.

I get lots of couples in my office seeking help to navigate these waters, and yes, I consider them dangerous waters. It’s a time when couples can really start moving away from each other, rather than towards each other. It’s a time when it’s easy to forget why you married your partner in the first place. This can put holes in the marriage that can sink the ship if you aren’t aware.

Prioritizing time with each other by making (and keeping) weekly dates. Yes, it’s an investment of time and maybe money but isn’t your marriage worth it? I see too many couples who have never gotten a babysitter for their kids and they act proud of it, while their marriage is deteriorating all around them. The best gift you can give your kids is to keep your primary relationship with your spouse primary.

  1. Create boundaries to honor your sex life. Yes, schedule it if that helps. It’s a key ingredient to keep you moving toward each other.
  2. Show affection to your spouse. Kiss each other for at least six seconds.
  3. Speak words of kindness and appreciation to your spouse. There needs to be a ratio of 5:1…. kind words to complaints.
  4. Set aside time daily to check in with each other by genuinely showing interest in your partner. If there is an issue needing discussed, assertively tell him using the words “I need to talk with you about…….Is this a good time?” If it isn’t a good time, mutually agree upon a time that is. Letting issues build literally can sink the ship.
  5. Remind yourself what drew you to your partner and keep that upfront/center inyour mind.


Seanne Emerton

Seanne is a Central Nebraska woman with deep roots. She and her husband still live on the land that has been in her family for six generations. While she loves to travel (especially to visit their grown sons and families in Denver and Boston), she loves returning to the open spaces of the Midwest. Seanne has been a marriage and family therapist for over 25 years. She loves the work and loves continually learning new ways to help strengthen relationships. She is the founder and owner of Family Resources of Greater NE, P.C. with offices in Grand Island, Kearney, York and Broken Bow. Seanne loves working with all kinds of people including facilitating individuals, families and businesses in growing their potential by using positive psychology. She is certified in assessing and coaching Emotional Intelligence and delights in building resiliency and happiness with her clients. Her side passion is designing and officiating personalized wedding ceremonies for couples as a Certified Life-Cycle Celebrant. She serves the Midwest area with her Celebrant work and loves the creative process of helping couples create a one-of-a-kind, memorable ceremony.