Many couples first enter marriage counseling during the stage when they’re just beginning to have babies and raising young children. As wonderful as it is to become parents, and as much as seeing the children you create together can make you fall even more deeply in love with your husband or wife, the transition can be understandably rough.
And for many, this is when their sex life and romantic connection begins to wane drastically. One or both parents are typically sleep deprived when the kids are very young, and as the children grow, there is homework to help with, extracurricular activities to carpool them to, as well as all the endless other aspects of life that need taking care of day in and day out.
In the shuffle and overwhelm of it all, even the most loving of wives are likely to find themselves sometimes wanting to shout to nearly anyone passing by something along the lines of, “I hate my husband!”
So when and how the heck can parents find some romantic time to share and become lovers again?
Here are 6 ways to fall back in love with the man you married (and vice verse) — even when you really feel like screaming, “I hate my husband!”
Note: My definition of romance is anything you do that makes your partner feel closer to you.
1. Think small when it comes to romance
Being romantic on a consistent basis doesn’t take much time. The problem is not time or a lack thereof — no matter how much you want to resist believing this statement — but rather that you’ve stopped thinking about romance.
Think of little things you could do that take only seconds, including things like expressing words of appreciation as you leave for work, sending a sweet and sexy text during the day, or bringing home your partner’s favorite dessert to enjoy together kid-free after dinner.
2. Remember that you have the power to uplift each other
Often, we fail to remember or even think about how positively powerful we are. A simple decision to express yourself in a romantic way can send positive vibes to your partner that could last for quite a while. It’s easy to forget this and feel consumed by the many heavy circumstances and tasks of your life, but pausing to do or say something simple and romantic for the person you love is actually a great way to counteract that feeling that it’s all too much.
3. Don’t wait until you “feel like it”
Odds are good that your parents didn’t openly show their romantic side in front of you, at least, not on a consistent basis. If you wait to do something romantic until you feel like doing it, you probably won’t be showing affection to your partner any more often than they did.
All good things need to be consciously and purposefully created and nurtured in life, and romantic relationships are no different.
4. Pick a time
Since you’re thinking small, pick a time every day, or at least most days, to do or say that romantic thing. Since it takes seconds or, at most, minutes, you will still have plenty of time left in the day to be a good parent and take care of business.
5. Show your kids how romantic you are
Children with parents who are romantic with each other are far more fortunate than parents who do everything for the kids but not much for each other. According to Margaret Heldring, president of the Society for Family Psychology, “Showing affection when your kids are around strengthens the love you have for each other, but it also reassures your children.”
6. Think big every once in a while
Every so often, get that babysitter for the night (or even for the weekend) and plan something that takes both of you out of the realm of parenthood for a longer period of time. These tips will go a long way toward making the intimacy in your relationship stronger and more joyful, which will in turn spill over to strengthen your entire family unit.
If you hate your husband are are having conflicts and strain in your unhappy marriage, seek out the help you need to sort through these issues and process them so that you can get on with the creation of a romantic long-term relationship and stop hating your spouse. Some strain and conflict is inevitable in any marriage, but don’t let that stop you from being the romantic couple you still are at the core!