Let’s face it; marriage isn’t easy. It’s no secret.
But, marriage with children? That’s even tougher.
From a lack of sleep in the first few years to financial worries later down the road, kids can put a lot of stress on marriages. It can take a lot of time and energy to keep your relationship flourishing.
One key thing to remember is “happy parents, happy kids.” Here are a few tips and tricks to keeping a healthy happy relationship when you’ve introduced kids into the mix.
Make Time to Be Alone
While you want to maintain your focus on your kids, it’s important to make time for just the two of you. After you have found a family member, neighbor or friend you trust to watch your child, make plans to have a night to yourselves. You don’t even have to go out! Sometimes making plans for an empty house goes further than making plans for a night on the town.
Enjoy the time together, watch a movie, read, go on a jog, or even a hike. Whatever it is, do it together. This time alone gives you an opportunity to refocus on your relationship. Make alone time together a habit, scheduling it out once a month or every couple of weeks! It is great for your kids, too. The older they get, the more they will also crave alone time.
Disagreement is Okay, but Do it Well
We know you’re probably asking what that even means. It’s simple. Don’t fight dirty, be willing to compromise, resolve the argument and reassure the kids that you’ve made up, and keep it separate from the kids.
We’ve all seen our parents argue while growing up, but if it happens a lot, there are negative consequences that can impact your children. Make sure your children feel you have energy for them and that they live in a safe environment. Kids might start blaming themselves if it becomes a habit to argue in front of them, as well. Most times this isn’t the case, but having them believe it and blame themselves is not healthy for the family as a whole.
Communication is Key
The biggest secret to a long, successful relationship is talking and communicating. Especially after kids are brought into the mix, finding time in your schedules to talk can be complicated. Find time to talk to each other, have a midweek check-in or talk before bed each night. Similar to finding a time to be alone each week, communicating ensures that you are still sharing how important you are to one another.
Keeping your marriage healthy and happy has proven to have positive effects on kids. Families with poor marriages have been shown to lead to poor psychological, behavioral, and academic performance and interpersonal skills. Like we mentioned earlier, “happy parents, happy kids.”