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.
- 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.
- Show affection to your spouse. Kiss each other for at least six seconds.
- Speak words of kindness and appreciation to your spouse. There needs to be a ratio of 5:1…. kind words to complaints.
- 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.
- Remind yourself what drew you to your partner and keep that upfront/center inyour mind.