Parental Relationships Suffer after Children are Born

Hollywood has provided more than enough examples of parental relationships taking a turn for the worse once children come along. Though most would chalk this up to the stress faced by celebrity couples living in the spotlight, the truth of the matter is that parents, celebrities or not, suffer from a significant strain on their relationship once children are in the picture.

According to the latest research, over a third of couples surveyed start fighting with their spouses after they have children. Out of that third, two-thirds admit the reasons that they argue are due to how parents feel their child should be raised.

Life Changing Facts

Any parent will admit that life changes significantly after having children, but the latest research shows that the relationship between the couple changes just as dramatically. Household roles, overall attraction and the frequency of sex can change to the point where the relationship quickly deteriorates.

What Is the Fuss About?

The majority of couples who fight or split up after having children do so for trivial reasons, including:

  • Parenting roles
  • Chores and who will do them
  • Finances
  • Managing the household

Lack of Alone Time

Having kids also means a couple will have less time alone. Though most parents attempt to have a “date night” once a month, the majority of parents rarely have this luxury due to hectic home and work schedules. This strain on the relationship can lead to a dramatic drop in sex, quality time or even communication between the couple. In fact, as the couple eventually begins to turn their focus to their children, talking becomes fighting rather than actual communication. Some couples have even admitted in recent polls that after having children, they stopped having sex altogether.

Sacrificing the Relationship Is Not the Answer

Most parents feel that once kids come into the picture, they must sacrifice their own needs and the needs of their relationship for that of their children. Parents no longer take time alone for themselves or together with each other. Instead, they focus on the children, devoting all of their time to their needs.

Marriage counselors and therapists are in agreement about one thing: parents need to put their marriage first. It might sound selfish, but parents who spend more time putting their relationship first actually raise healthier and more well-adjusted children versus those parents who devote their entire lives to their kids. When children sense open love and affection between their parents, they will thrive. Children raised in homes where parents frequently argue or neglect one another do not.

Tips on Boosting the Relationship

Even if your marriage has started to decline after having children, there are ways to give it the reboot it needs. Though you will continue to focus on your children, you and your spouse must also focus on one another, which in the long run will dramatically change things for the better. Some things to consider include:

  •  Have regular date nights at least twice per month;
  • Share dreams, hopes and thoughts with one another;
  • Wish the best for one another;
  • Enjoy each other’s company;
  • Spend time alone after the children are asleep at night;
  • Be each other’s friend and support system;
  • Be open, honest and discuss parenting issues rather than argue about them.

Making your relationship number one makes for a happy family and a happy home.

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