Keep the Love Alive … After Kids
By: Diedre Anthony
Having kids totally changes the dynamic of marriage. Between the dirty diapers, late night feedings & tantrums, it can be difficult to keep the love alive with your spouse. When you can barely keep your eyes open after an exhausting day with the kids, the last thing you feel like is making time for your spouse. However, love is more than a feeling, it’s an action. Making your spouse a priority, even when your time together is limited, is vital for a healthy marriage relationship.
December 31, 2015 marked six years that my husband and I have been married. Every year, we like to take some time to reflect on our relationship. For this post, I decided to interview my husband. He wanted to share some helpful tips with you all.
Diedre: Justin, how have we kept the love alive?
Justin: It helps to clean stuff up.
Diedre: Can you elaborate?
Justin: Deep sigh. Dishes. Tub. Bathroom. Humor. Laugh with each other. I like seeing my wife smile. Make dinner at home with her favorite beverage. Admit when you’re wrong.
His answers were short, sweet and to the point.
I agree with my husband, but I’m going to give you a bit more detail..from a mother’s perspective.
Keep the romance alive through date nights (hire a babysitter), candlelight dinners at home and quiet time talking in bed before going to sleep. Sometimes we get stuck in the monotony of work (inside and outside of the home) and our duties of parenthood. Our spouse becomes our partner in handling life’s debacles but ceases to be our lover and friend. Having date nights keeps the love alive.
Stay in shape.
Okay, this may seem like a weird tip, but when you’re in shape, you feel better about yourself. You also have more energy to keep up with the kids! Not to mention fewer trips to the doctor and contributing to your overall health. Motivate each other!
Talk to each other, not at each other.
Raising kids together is beautiful, but also tiring! Sometimes we look at our spouse as the person who can help run errands. Can you take out the trash? Can you run to the bank? I thought you’d have dinner ready?! Taking time to communicate makes your partner feel valued. If you are frustrated, communicate why you are frustrated.
Timing is everything.
This tip goes along with the last one. For example, if I’ve just gotten home from work, and my husband is frustrated because I’ve spent too much money this month, discussing it with me while I’m juggling bath time and preparing for the next day, is the worst possible time. If he catches me after the kids are in bed and helps me fold a load of laundry while we talk, I’ll be more receptive to what he has to say.
Connect with other adults.
Sometimes you feel as if you’re alone. All you do is yell at the kids, and your spouse annoys you. Getting together with other couples who have kids reminds you that you aren’t alone! Adult interaction goes a long way, especially if you can do it together!
Compliment your spouse.
You think he knows you find him attractive because you said yes. He thinks you know he appreciates you because he doesn’t complain when you cook. Who doesn’t like to hear nice things about themselves? Don’t let your spouse think you’re taking him/her for granted. Tell them what you love about them!