How to Balance Parenting and Marriage
Today’s world is different from the one we grew up in.
We can’t send our kids out to play on their own — even going to school is dangerous — and the divorce rate is dropping, thanks to millennial families who don’t believe in that archaic tradition and are changing the very dynamics of marriage and parenting, entirely.
Parenting and marriage issues
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.
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.
Staying lovers while raising kids
One can easily balance marriage and parenting but have to follow certain rules to achieve that not-so-impossible task like a pro.
1. Communicate, communicate, communicate
We might sound like we’re repeating ourselves, but learning how to communicate efficiently is undoubtedly one of the most important relationship skills you can learn to help you maintain both your married life and your life as parents.
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. 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.
2. Prioritize yourself and each other
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.
Prioritizing yourself, your kids and your marriage are not mutually exclusive concepts. It’s a bit of a balancing act, but it’s worth it in the long run.
3. Play with your kids
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. This change has led to an increase in children suffering from childhood obesity.
Right now, more than 12 million children in the United States fall under the classification of obese.
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.
4. 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.
5. 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.
Want to have a happier, healthier marriage?
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.