But, what do I do? My kids need me. My partner is an adult.
Finding the right synergy and balance between your partner and your kid can be daunting to say the least. It can be difficult to meet your partner’s needs effectively which inevitably forces us to choose. The day you professed your commitment to the love of your life you vowed to have and to hold your mate through sickness and in health until death do you both part — or something like that, right? It seems pretty easy to stay wrapped in the warm fuzzies of that euphoric experience. It feels impenetrable. Nothing can invade that romanticism or separate you from the wonderful feelings that kind of love can bring. But wait, there is one thing I can think of…babies (yep, those cute little wrinkly, cuddly, chubby cheeked, dreamy eyed babies). Even though we love to love on them, I humorously refer to them as “blockers”. They can unintentionally “block” connection with your partner.
When they make their debut, suddenly those googly eyes you only had for your partner have to share screen time. Naturally, (well, because they are babies and can’t do anything for themselves) your attention may shift completely from your partner and totally to the baby. And reasonably so, that’s your beautiful baby, but this shift can leave your partner in a confused state of, “What the BEEP!?” Some may argue, your mate should be understanding and adjust to the change that babies introduce to your dynamic. Understandable. However, there are major risks to completely turning your attention from your partner to your baby for extended periods of time. Striking balance is key. Your baby won’t be dependent forever. Also, finding synergy can have great benefits for you, your baby, and your partner. Everyone could win this unspoken battle.
1) Continue to date your partner. It doesn’t have to be anything fancy or elaborate. A date could mean once the kids are asleep, you all watch your favorite movie, play a game, chat, or just cuddle. Find that safe space to sustain your relationship.
2) Send flirty text messages. Keep the fire ablaze at all time! Exchanging loving or flirty messages can keep you connected even when you are away from one other.
3) Share parental duties. Find equity in sharing parental responsibilities. Often times when one partner feels overworked or overwhelmed, it can cause resentment which can stifle connectedness. Lean into your partner so you will know how and when to optimize your purpose for them.
4) Be intentional. You know you best. Find unique ways to spend quality time with everyone individually and collectively. Make it a priority. It’s not easy striking balance, but it is doable if you remain intentional.
My husband and I have been victims of focusing on everything else and forgetting about each other. Children aren’t the only distraction that can drive a wedge between your relationship. Work, people, and other misplaced priorities can pose threats as well. However, when you make a concerted effort to create dedicated space for your partner, mate, or significant other, everyone thrives and wins.