5 Ways To Maintain A Happy Marriage While Being A Parent
Having kids is one of the most amazing life experiences, but the nature of parenting can also place a lot of stress on one’s marriage. It is common for both husband and wife to neglect the marriage itself amidst the busyness of changing diapers, feeding the kids, picking them up from school, and mediating their fights.
However, this does not mean that the marriage should have to suffer as a result. If you are finding it challenging to maintain a happy marriage, here are some tips to help:
Set Aside Date Nights
It is a great idea to set aside one night every week (or one night every few weeks, depending on your circumstances) to go out for a nice meal or to the movies, without the kids. This allows husband and wife to take their minds off the kids, albeit for that brief few hours. Exclusive one-on-one time is essential in keeping the sparks alive, and it does wonders to the mental state of husband and wife to have such moments where the focus is solely on each other.
Keep The Communication Lines Open
It is crucial for husband and wife to constantly check in with each other to find out where each other is mentally and physically. Hard as it may be, try to set aside at least some time to have high-quality communication with each other, such as whenever the kids are at preschool, or after they have gone to sleep. Constant communication is important so that each partner has a firm understanding of where each other is presently at, and it also prevents unhealthy thoughts from festering alone. Lastly, it also helps provide much-needed emotional support where needed.
Always Respect One Another
It is important to always maintain a healthy respect for each other, knowing that he/she is both your marriage partner as well as the parent of your children. Acknowledge that your partner is putting in his/her best effort into the family, just as you are. When you accord respect to your partner and view him/her as a great husband/wife, as well as a great father/mother to your children, your children will also sense the mutual respect and it leads to a healthier and more harmonious family dynamic.
Accept That There Will Be Conflict
In the absolute chaos that parenting can sometimes bring, emotions can sometimes run high, leading to disagreements and even fights between husband and wife. Such conflicts are inevitable because parenting is highly emotional and highly charged in nature. In the interest of the entire family, parents should learn to fight fairly and not let a random fight adversely affect the mood of the entire family, and see the bigger picture and move on quickly from the disagreement, knowing that there will inevitably be many other conflicts further down the road to tackle.
Keep It Light And Funny
A keen sense of humour goes a long way in keeping the marriage enjoyable, especially in periods of frustration and high stress. Learn to look on the lighter side of things. Keep the atmosphere light and jovial. Crack as many jokes as possible. There’s nothing more wonderful than sharing a laugh as an entire family, and it goes a long way in promoting family harmony.
Marriage is a marathon that often lasts more than 40-50 years. A marriage is often severely tested when you are raising young kids, because that is the period where parents are often at their busiest. Maintaining a happy marriage is one of the most important factors in building an enjoyable and long-lasting family life together.