My Marriage is on the Rocks
by Alexandra Spitz
Warning: sarcasm ahead – post to be taken light heartedly 🙂
It’s Saturday afternoon and my marriage is on the rocks. A few months back, my husband and I noticed a pattern. By Saturday afternoon, we didn’t know if we would make it. We were both exhausted and needed a break. We would fight over whose turn it was to take care of the kids and neither one of us had very much patience. We weren’t being very good parents. For those of you who have attended our toddler parenting classes, we were definitely closer to the 30% number by Saturday evenings!
We would have the occasional date night, which we were always so excited about, but we had avoided having babysitters too often to save money. Once we realized how much happier we were when we got a night out, we decided that spending the money on a babysitter every Saturday night would save us a lot in divorce fees after enough Saturdays of needing a break. Ok, that might be a slight exaggeration, but you get the point.
We now have a babysitter every Saturday and it has made a huge difference both individually and in our marriage! We both look forward to that time together and night out. Some nights we get dressed up and go out for a nice dinner, others we go shopping in lounge clothes and eat at a casual restaurant. It gives us a chance to talk about things we don’t get around to during the week with all of the chaos around here. When we have an event to attend, we already know we have coverage. We’ve even been able to lump in some overnights and weekends away since we already have some of the time covered!
If you find yourself at each other’s throats and it’s really just because you both need a break (we all do!), consider getting a regular date night on the schedule. If it’s not possible every week, start with every two weeks. It’s important that it’s scheduled in on a regular basis so you know you have something to look forward to. You can plan things far in advance or decide at the last minute what you feel like doing.
You know how important I feel it is to parent as a team and stay connected, and getting these dates scheduled is the best way to make sure that happens. Please believe me when I say that you ABSOLUTELY need to work toward this. If you’re nervous about having someone other than you (or your mom) taking care of your baby, plan your night out after baby goes down at night or during a daytime nap. Of course, you’ll have someone you trust to be able to take care of things should baby wake up, but this way, you can put your baby to sleep before you leave and the sitter will just be there while she sleeps. Stay close by at first just in case the baby wakes up and the sitter needs you. Over time, odds are you’ll find the sitter is completely capable and you won’t have to go out after bedtime anymore. But I’m all about baby steps (see what I did there?) in getting to your ultimate goal. So take it slow and do what feels best, but absolutely do it! It’s amazing what you find out about your significant other after you reconnect after having your baby.