The struggle for homeostasis is something that parents are constantly striving towards. I have been a parent coach for several years, and I have noticed that it is often difficult to separate the marriage from the Parenting. You can be a parent and not be married, and you can also be married without being a parent, yet this is hard to do when you combine both. How do you maintain a healthy balance after many years of being together and being parents?
Help each other out
In our household, the dishes are typically done by my husband, he enjoys this task, and I do not. My contribution is that I will unload the dishwasher afterward. I do not know how we created this routine, but it happens to be our schedule. My husband is appreciative when I unload the dishwasher, and I love knowing that we won’t have a pile of dirty dishes left overnight. Small gestures like that will help you appreciate each other. Think about ways that you can lighten the load for your spouse to make their life easier. Parenting can burn you out if one person feels like they are the sole executor of all parenting tasks. Ask the parent responsible for making the appointments, driving to places, or homework how they might need help with lightening their burden. Those are some ways you can help in the area of parenting. When it comes to the marriage, things might look a little different, but the same principle still applies. Marriage is a two-person set-up; if one person feels like they are always initiating intimacy time or scheduling date night, that person can feel like they are the only one invested in the marriage. Reciprocate back and forth with who makes arrangements for spending time together; it is important you both feel supported with the marriage.
Maintain communication throughout the day with each other. Communicating about the children is extremely important, but it can also be very draining. Dedicate time to talk about parenting issues and then move on. Focusing on only the parenting aspect of your relationship with neglecting the interpersonal and individuality of each other can lead to heavy resentment. Stay in contact throughout the day with small check-in that can be done via text. It’s not to start a conversation but to let the other person know that you are thinking of them.
Put the Relationship ahead of Children.
This is always a controversial statement when I say it. I love being a mother, and my children are the two most amazing souls to me. I have to remind myself that my husband and I had eight incredible child-free years together before deciding to grow our family.
Marriage and Parenting is a symbiotic relationship, and neither can be neglected. Our children are the outcome of our relationship to the reason for our relationship. Work on making your relationship a priority and not all about the children. Parenting comes in different waves, do not get caught up in a particular tide, and neglect each other.
Yes, you’re a parent & no, the marriage is not Dead. Depending on which development stage your child is in, it may be necessary to put the Parenting ahead of the marriage. As children move through the developmental stages, the level of parental engagement changes, and you have to adjust accordingly. As you make these adjustments, it should be noted that the stronger your marriage is, the more successful your Parenting will be.
Beatrice (Bea) Moise, M.S., BCCS., is a Board-Certified Cognitive Specialist, Parenting Coach, Writer, and National Speaker. She is the creator of A Child Like Mine, LLC, a company created for educating parents of children with unique behavioral and learning needs while giving them the tools they need to be successful at home. She is a respected and trusted parenting coach and consultant in Charlotte, NC, and surrounding areas. Helping parents of children with Autism, ADHD and other behavioral challenges. Bea is frequently featured on WCNC Charlotte Parenting Today, and has been featured on People of Charlotte, Peace & Parenting, Dandelion Seeds Positive Parenting & Ballantyne Magazine providing tips for parents. Bea has written for PBS-Kids, AAPC-Publishing, PsychCentral, Charlotte Parent Magazine, Autism Parenting Magazine, Carolina Parent, and Scoop Charlotte. Bea has a Bachelor of Science in Psychology; also, she also holds a Master of Science in Mental Health Counseling with a specialty of Applied Behavior Analysis. Bea and her husband have two children, Jacob, who is awesomely autistic, and Abby, who is simply marvelous!