They say that opposites attract; when it comes to balancing marriage and parenting, that can be a good thing. With each spouse bringing different skills and talents to the table, as a couple, you can learn from each other and have a rich experience together.
For example, a more outgoing wife can help a more introverted husband to get out more, and the more organized husband can help the less organized wife get more things accomplished. And the list goes on.
Together, a husband and wife can help each other grow. While this can be a thing of beauty in a marriage, when it comes to parenting, sometimes being opposites isn’t a good thing.
Perhaps he is sterner, and she is more lenient; he is more consistent, she is more flexible, or perhaps they are not certain of who comes first: spouse or children.
When you bring two different people, with two different childhoods and backgrounds together into co-parenting roles, it can get messy.
How do you manage parenting and marriage? How do you handle discipline problems? When your child gets a citation at school, how does each parent want to handle it at home?
What about how much time to allow them to spend at friends’ houses, or how much time to allow them to use electronic devices? What about chores, or money or using your cars? Truly, there are many, many things to consider.
Balancing marriage and parenting is not for the faint-hearted.Putting your spouse first in marriage and managing your relationships after kids takes a lot of time and patience.
We can’t raise our kids the way our parents brought us up, and that makes it even more challenging to balance your marriage with the joys of parenthood, especially when we’re spending most of our time with at least half an eye on our little ones.
According to the Institute for Divorce Financial Analysts, basic incompatibility issues and differences over parenting factor into many couples’ reasons for splitting up. It’s important not to take it lightly.
How can you balance marriage and parenting while finding enough time for both? Well! There are ways to balance marriage and parenting. Let’s understand them, one at a time.
One can easily balance marriage and parenting but have to follow certain rules to achieve that not-so-impossible task like a pro.
So how can marriage with children coexist in a more harmonious way? How to make a relationship work with kids? It is possible to do both and do them well.
Balancing marriage and parenting requires your willingness to work on your marriage. To stay lovers while raising kids can seem like a cumbersome task with so much happening around you that you seem to drift a little away from your sweet marriage.
However, with the right approach, truthfulness, and trust in each other, you can easily manage marriage and parenting without having to worry about your marriage breaking apart.
Marriage after kids is an overwhelming experience that is common for many couples. It is mainly because couples tend to neglect their relationship amidst all the chaos of career, household, family, and so forth.
So, how to keep a balance between marriage and parenting? Is there any solution for marriage after children or to solve marriage problems after kids?
The dynamics of marriage and parenting are changing entirely. Here are some tips for balancing marriage and parenting without going crazy:
1. Teach your children independence
Not only will it help them gain confidence as he starts making his own breakfast, cleaning their own room, and even playing on his own, it’ll reduce stress on the parents and give mom and dad more time with each other.
It might seem scary at first but graduallyincreasing the amount of freedom or independence for your kids only helps them learn the necessary skills required for surviving alone or with others.
Marriage and parenting can co-exist hand in hand. Try the above tips; if it’s still unmanageable, then get professional counseling to help your specific case.
2. Agree on your core values
Love. Family. Work. Happiness. Whatever your core values are with regards to parenting, write them down. Keep those in front of you, so you always have them to come back to.
Hopefully, these core values will be a good baseline to help you both cover most of the basic issues with regards to parenting; this can go a long way in helping you achieve balance and harmony in your marriage while you go about parenting.
Remember to raise happy kidswhile putting your marriage first. Putting your marriage first or putting a spouse before children can prove pivotal in balancing marriage and parenting.
The habits that you practice every day make a strong impression on your kids. Spending quality family time would help your kids to learn the act of balancing things in life and obviously brings you closer to them.
4. Don’t fight in front of the kids
It’s really hard not to disagree on parenting decisions when you’re in the moment with your kids right there, but you need to make it a priority.
Maybe your 9-year-old son is very impulsive; it drives dad crazy, and he wants to yell and punish him by taking away a privilege, but mom is more patient and thinks a less strict punishment is in order.
Instead of talking it out in front of your son, excuse yourselves for a few minutes. Talk it out away from your son. Come to an agreement and then discuss it with your son.
This will help you work out your differences and also be a more consistentparenting team for your son.
After being married for a while, you might find the only time you fight with one another is when communication breaks down between you. You need to practice your communication skills — both how to talk and when you should broach a subject.
Maintaining your marriage and children can prove to be quite a back-breaking task for many. Naturally, there are issues you wish to communicate with your partner, but your kids demand your attention, especially during their infancy.
But, don’t start talking about a difficult subject at 3 a.m. when the kids won’t sleep, and you’re both exhausted. That’ll just end with both of you upset and fighting — not because you’re angry at each other, but because you’re tired and frustrated and don’t know any other way to express yourself.
It is always best if you could take the time to learn how to communicate and connect, rather than ignoring your partner and letting their statements go in one ear and out the other.
For being happily married with kids, self-care is one of the essential skills you’ll learn as both a spouse and a parent.
It’s easy to neglect yourself when you’ve got kids who depend on you and a spouse who demands what little attention you haven’t already spent on the kids, but if you want to balance marriage and parenting, you need to learn how to prioritize yourself once in a while.
You don’t have to neglect your other responsibilities or people in your life. Instead, make it a point to take time for yourself, even if it’s something small like taking 20 minutes to meditate or work out.
At the same time, you’ll also need to learn how to prioritize each other. Have someone babysit the kids and schedule a date night once a month or once every other week, as finances allow. You’re going to be tired and stressed out, especially in the first few months after having a new baby.
Making time for regular date nights gives you a chance to unwind and relearn how to prioritize one another, which can be a challenge with little ones at home.
It seems like everyone has an opinion on how you should be raising your kids. One thing we can all agree on, however, is that kids don’t play outside like we used to.
Even millennials who grew up in the 1990s had more freedom to explore and play — and fewer incentives to stay indoors. Unfortunately, this change has led to an increase in children suffering from childhood obesity.
The easiest way to solve this problem, or at least mitigate some of its effects, is to take time to play with your kids. Get outside and spend time with them on the playground instead of sitting on the bench and watching them play.
You might be surprised how much fun you have, plus it’ll help you get some cardio, too.
11. Don’t feel guilty about taking time
If you’re not the perfect parent, you might worry people are talking about you behind your back.
So what if they are? As long as everyone in the household is fed, clothed, and happy, don’t feel bad about setting aside some time for yourself or for you and your spouse to reconnect.
Self-care is not selfish.
And, self-care includes caring for your relationship with your partner or the ones you have with your children, in addition to caring for yourself. This is how you can balance your marriage and parenting at the same time.
12. Work on it every day
Finding the balance between parenthood and your marriage won’t happen overnight. Nothing worth putting in the effort ever does.
Take the time to practice and find your balance.
You will have to work on it every day and maybe even relearn a few skills, like self-care, you’ve forgotten in your quest to be the perfect parent or partner. Take care of yourself, take care of each other, and everything else will take care of itself.
13. Eat together
It is well known that a family who eats together stays together. No matter how busy your lives are, always sit down to eat together as it is the source of love, fulfillment, and a satisfying meal.
Besides, food is also known as a medium of deep connection. People are said to feel closer when they are eating the same food and eating together. This amazing family time will also help you all foster a deeper connection and build good parents and children relationships.
14. Build rituals
Every family has certain rituals. They usually come down from the husband and wife’s respective families that get replicated into their life after marriage. However, there should be certain stand-apart rituals of each family.
For couples with kids, try to build and honor the ritual for your family- something you’d like your kids to carry forward as they grow up and move on in their lives.
Fighting in front of your kids has a very negative impact. They grow up seeing their parents as their ideals, and when they see them fight, it emotionally scars them. This will either distance them from their parents or have them take a side.
There will always be rough times in marriage but with the right approach, you can balance parenting and marriage with ease.
This will not only help you strengthen your relationship with your spouse but also help build a strong and respectful relationship with your children, who in turn will grow up to become responsible in their relationships.
If you feel disconnected or frustrated about the state of your marriage but want to avoid separation and/or divorce, the marriage.com course meant for married couples is an excellent resource to help you overcome the most challenging aspects of being married.
Sylvia Smith loves to share insights on how couples can revitalize their love lives in and out of the bedroom. As a writer at Marriage.com, she is a big believer in living consciously and encourages couples to adopt this principle in their lives too. Sylvia believes that every couple can transform their relationship into a happier, healthier one by taking purposeful and wholehearted action.