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Relationship Counseling: Marriage After Kids
Relationship Counseling: How to Stay Close to Your Partner After You Have Kids
If you are a new parent, or just a parent in general, you are probably familiar with the juggling act that starts with your spouse after you have kids. You try to find balance between spouse time, parenting time, and family time, but it can seem almost impossible! (Related Article: Common Marriage Problems- What To Do). It is common for couples like you to seek relationship counseling. It’s not easy trying to do it all. Is it even possible to be an engaged parent and spouse at the same time?
It is possible for you to be a happy parent and have a happy marriage. But, that requires some strategy. Today, you will learn some helpful tips that can help you and your partner stay close while parenting young kids.
Finding Fun Together
Your kids will bring you and your partner joy and happiness. And they will also require a lot of energy, attention, and effort! It’s normal for things to seem overwhelming when you are busy raising young kids. However, just because the stress is normal does not mean that it has to prevent you and your spouse from having a happy, fulfilling marriage. (Related Article: Evolving Love).
Having fun together is an essential part of maintaining happiness in your marriage. In fact, research has found that the amount of fun a couple has together is a great predictor of how happy they will be in their marriage (Source). But how can you find time for fun when things just feel so chaotic? Family time together with your kids is also an important part of your marriage relationship, but finding time to have fun as a couple is also essential.
Let’s talk about some creative ways you and your partner can find time to have fun together, even when you are busy.
Small Moments, Big Potential
Creating trust and safety in your marriage will require some big commitments and actions. However, a strong marriage is also built on the small moments, too. Don’t overlook the small moments that hold a chance for connection with your partner. A great way to encourage this is to make an effort to ask your partner questions about their daily life. Showing a genuine interest in their daily life and well-being opens up an opportunity for vulnerability and connection, even when you are busy with the kids. (Related Article: How to Communicate Effectively).
Set An Example
Your children will learn many of their basic beliefs about relationships and love by watching you and your partner’s interactions. No pressure, right? That can seem like a scary task, but making an effort to demonstrate a healthy marriage for your children can go a long way in your family and your marriage. Talk openly with your kids about the importance of you and your spouse having time together. When you have time for date nights, explain to your kids why you and your spouse spend time together. Placing importance on your marriage for your family is a great opportunity for connection and healthy communication in your home. (Source).
Now that you have kids, it’s not easy to go on spontaneous dates with your spouse like you used to. And that’s okay! In this new phase of your marriage and relationship, planning ahead can be important. Don’t be afraid to plan a date night and babysitter weeks ahead of time, if needed. Dates don’t have to be overly complicated, expensive, or long. Just small moments of time together can go a long way. (Related article: Couples Therapy).
Additionally, pay special attention to the time you and your partner have together after your kids go to sleep. That can be a great opportunity to create a chance for quality couple time, especially if you have a hard time finding a babysitter for the kids. (Related article: Marriage Counseling: Your Marriage in The Preschool Years). Plan a movie night at home, cook a meal together, or just spend time talking alone. Again, your time together does not have to be elaborate to be special! Your quality time together is what you make it.
Relationship Counseling Can Help
This period of your life is a challenge. Relationship counselors are very aware of your unique struggles as a couple raising kids, and they are here to help! Relationship counseling can also be an opportunity to improve your communication skills and grow closer as a couple.
Written by Lauren Adkins