Seun is a first time mum in a marriage barely 2yrs old and she already feels life as she knows it is over. Amidst feeding an always hungry son, changing ever soiled diapers, bathing and laundry, she barely has time to hear herself think not to talk of listening to her husband’s chit chat after work or any intimacy.
Seun is me and might be you right now; you just had a baby, maybe not your first or maybe even your fourth, but you realize that for the past 3 to even 9 months after child birth, your affections and attention have been solely for that child. Your husband might not be vocal about it, but believe me, he hurts.
So what do you do when you realize that your marriage is between you and your partner and kids are just an addition and not the cornerstone? YOU SPICE UP YOUR MARRIAGE!
How do you do this, let me give you 5 steps on how to get those feelings oiled and ready;
Don’t Talk Kids All The Time
Yes, I said that. I know it’s very difficult not to rave about your kids seeming awesome accomplishments of getting down from the bed solo or taking first steps, but you need to stop. Ask your partner how their day went and listen to them talk. Empathise with difficult moments and share laughs over jokes. You can both agree to have baby talk during a set time period and all conversations relating to kids should be restricted to that.
Compliment Your Partner Frequently
After years in marriage and with the arrival of kids, it is very easy to not see your partner in all their initial glory. However, always consciously remind yourself to look for the good every day in your partner, it might just be something as easy as “thanks for the meal, I understand how stressed you are” or “How was work, your office doesn’t know how lucky they are to have you all day”. Everyone loves to be appreciated. It brings out the best in us.
Talk: Always Talk
There is nothing like too much communication. Look for a time when you and your partner are less stressed, it might be early mornings or late evenings after everyone has been tucked into bed. Talk about your frustrations, sex, anger, disappointment and appreciation of each other. This is not a time to argue or accuse, talk plainly and be open to listening and understanding your partners’ point of view. Most troubles in our mind are as a result of misinterpretation of our partners’ words or actions and this can be cleared up with a simple, “Hun, when you said xxxxx yesterday, I felt unappreciated because I understood it to mean yyyyy”.
Go on Dates
This simply means take some time off parenting and just be you two again. It doesn’t have to be an expensive outing, you can just go to the beach or take a stroll around the neighbourhood and sit in that bukka on the other street. Listen to street convos and take in the sights and sounds around you. Look for someone reliable to watch your kids or make plans with another couple where you 4 swap babysitting duties for couple date nights.
Never Forget Intimacy
Get a red-hot marker and circle at least a day each week when the cookie must crumble. This doesn’t mean it can’t crumble every other day. But with all the activities involved in taking care of kids, you just might forget to get intimate. However, when your calendar reminds you that something should go down, whether it be a quickie or a full blown out hours session, it’s easier to go through the day.
These rules are not fixed, but they have worked for me and I believe they will work for you too. Give them a try, add your own kinks to it and see your marriage come back to life.