There seems to be a disturbing trend among home/unschoolers. One that we must look at if we are to maintain marital bliss.
Making time for marriage.
When we devote our entire being to the children, we tend to lose sight of our spouse and that’s not healthy, for either spouse. We MUST make time for them or the marriage suffers. Taking time with our spouses doesn’t mean we have to neglect our parental duties, it means we are working to nurture the support system we rely upon for our own sanity. For some of us, our spouse is our only support and if we neglect them, they become bitter and, eventually, fed up.
Next stop, divorce court and the ugly battles to follow.
How do we make time to nurture ourselves, our marriage AND the kids!?
It’s not going to be easy but, it’s doable.
The first thing we have to remember is this: If we don’t nurture ourselves, how can we expect to nurture our children or our relationships? Take time to learn something every day. Even if it’s just the proper way to iron a shirt! Trust me on this, you MUST keep up on your education and your skills because there will come a day when you’ll need them. The children grow up, move away and you’re left with a hole in your life where your job should be. If you’ve divorced…. the hole becomes a bottomless pit.
Spend time talking to your spouse regularly. Even if it’s while they are in the shower! Mike and I spend a few minutes a day, in the morning and evening, talking about things from how we think the kids ae doing to how we need support for something or another. We insist on time with each other because we know the importance of communication in a marriage. It is the glue that holds it all together and, when we DON’T take time for each other, we end up feeling resentful and arguments ensue.
Take, for example, this recent conversation I had with my husband Mike.
me “The boys are getting on my last nerve today with the fighting. I’m so pissed right now that I could scream!”
Mike “What do you expect me to do about it?”
Me “well geeze, I was only venting, what’s with the attitude?”
Mike “You’re always complaining about the kids, what do you want me to do, babysit them, pay the bills, clean the house, walk the dog AND take care of you? I’m not Superman!”
Me “what are you saying, that I don’t do anything??”
Mike “Yes, as a matter of fact, I am!”
An argument and tears ensued. Our second “real” fight in ten years of marriage.
What we SHOULD have said was “I’m overwhelmed and need to vent” or “I’ve had a rotten day and need snuggle time” but, because we went for a week or two NOT communicating, we felt that the other was neglecting us. We, eventually, said we were overwhelmed and needed a time to ourselves. but not before it got ugly, in front of the kids.
MAKE time for each other. I know there aren’t enough hours in the day to do everything you want to do. The kids need to be nurtured, laundry needs done, dishes washed, dinner made, vacuuming, ect but you HAVE to find time for you and your spouse! Even a few minutes of “I’m overwhelmed” or even just silently hugging each other can be a booster for your mental health. There are nights when Mike comes to bed, thoroughly exhausted, and we just snuggle till he falls asleep and then I’ll get up and finish dishes or some other chore that didn’t get done.
People talk about making a “date night” is mandatory for a marriage. From my experience, it’s not a “necessity” but more of a “nicety” Sure, a night on the town is nice but, most of us can’t afford it!! Mike and I had a night at a motel once, when the kids were little but we spent most of the time sleeping!!
Communicate with your spouse. That’s key to your relationship and, guess what, if you’re showing your children that you have a stable, loving relationship, they too will develop the capacity to have the same with their spouse!
Tell me, what are your thoughts on this?