Children will not go away when ignored. Marriages will.
THE MOST important relationship in a family is between the parents.
Divorce is the MOST disruptive event in a child’s life – emotionally, economically, and logistically. No child wants his/her parents to get divorced. Period.
Hence, parents invest in your relationship. Take these actions.
- Take time to be together regularly. Set a monthly date if necessary. Laugh. Have sex. Have fun together doing something you both like.
- Talk daily. Ironically, when my husband traveled for corporate America, we talked MORE because I set aside 30 minutes at the end of the day after the kids were in bed to talk to him, uninterrupted. I made it a priority to stay in touch with him. We had a rule — no fighting when he was on the road because it felt like a dead-end when we hung up, with nowhere to go.
- Go away together as a couple once a year, for at least an overnight. “As a couple” means without the children! Find someone to take care of your children – pay, trade, ask relatives or friends. I found people to care for our four children and a dog. Crazy people are out there! Some of them are childless & might enjoy the adventure. Others do it because they’re related to you. We did all of the above – paid, traded, and asked friends/relatives.
- GET TUNE-UPS regularly. You maintain your car and your house, do the same for your marriage with the same regularity. Without fail. Filling up your tank every week with gas translates to weekly dates as simple as reserving time together after putting the children to bed.We had a standard in-house date of dinner and a movie. I fed the kids early, put them in front of their movie while we ate. Then we put them to bed and watched our movie.
- Get professional help until you learn to communicate openly and heal your childhood wounds. Therapy, workshops and groups are all WAY CHEAPER than getting divorced. Invest in your marriage, it’s worth it.
We followed the above guidelines and are going on 30 years together, and survived raising four children, moving five times and financial crises.
The first 20 years are the hardest. After the children leave home everything seems so simple. I fell in love with my husband again after the children left home. It’s wonderful to be with my life mate and the father of my children.
We drove over many bumps in the road to get here, with unexpected stops and destinations. HANG ON for the ride. It’s worth it.Explore posts in the same categories: empty nest, marriage first, mothers, Self-care for mothers comment below, or link to this permanent URL from your own site.