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Learn my Fool-Proof Ways to Keep Marriage Strong After Kids….
My husband and I met on a little island called Okinawa almost 11 years ago. I was about to swear into the Air Force and leave for basic training when I met him, and he was a Marine stationed at Camp Foster.
If I had continued on my path to join the Air Force, I wouldn’t have seen him again, and made the decision of stepping down.
People thought we were crazy
Friends and family thought I was honestly crazy; I mean I had only been with him for a total of 3 weeks. But if you know, you know. Our 11 years of marriage can attest to that.
Now, I’m not going to sit here and tell you that it was all cupcakes and rainbows – it had its ups and downs. In our 11 years of marriage, my husband has been away for a big chunk of it due to his career in the military.
Not even a year into our marriage he had to deploy to Afghanistan and a short year later deployed there yet again.
After the birth of our first born he had to go to Japan for an unaccompanied tour and that was the most trying on us, especially him. He was away from his wife and son.
A few years after that our little Jaxson was born and he decided to make a crucial career change, to apply to become a Warrant Officer. And with that, he was gone another nine months.
In the midst of training to become a Warrant Officer, we found out that our youngest son had DYRK1A Syndrome, a rare genetic disorder. Time away, having kids, and one whom has a disability… you can imagine that we sure have our fair share of obstacles.
But that didn’t stop us. If you truly love someone you will make it work.
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Simple Ways to Keep Your Marriage Strong After Kids
These are just some of my simple fool-proof ways to keep marriage strong after kids! This is what has helped us keep strong after all of the curve balls that were thrown our way.
Go to a Movie
When we were a younger couple and before kids we would go out to see a movie every other week and pair it with a nice dinner to one of our favorite restaurants – Olive Garden. Just because you have kids doesn’t mean you can’t do it again. When we were stationed in Pensacola they had monthly date nights for parents.
We were able to drop off our kids for a few hours those evenings and pay an hourly fee. Totally worth it. We got to spend time with each other at dinner talking. I don’t know about you but going out to a movie with my husband makes me feel like young again.
Have a Night In
Can’t get a baby sitter or respite provider? That’s okay too. There are plenty of date night ideas for home. In my Cheap At Home Date Night Ideas I go into detail about how you can still have a romantic date at home. Whether it’s playing a board game, cuddling on the couch with popcorn and a good movie, it’s totally doable.
Our Saturday’s are spent cuddling together and catching up on our favorite TV show, Ghost Adventures. We’ll usually pair the TV show with a yummy and hearty buffalo chicken dip and tostitos.
Go to Lunch
I know life during the week can be difficult on everyone. We all have our obligations at work or in my case I have to shuffle our kids to different therapy or doctor appointments. I am constantly on the go when I’m not working from home.
When we go food shopping on Friday’s we make it a point (unless there are meetings or doctor appointments) to get together and have lunch at the club on his base. We still have our little one with us but it’s still nice meeting up together to take time to talk about our day.
Take Time to Talk
Communication is definitely key to a successful marriage. He’s emotionally and physically drained from work, and I’m drained with being both a caregiver and work at home mom. We like to share exciting things that happened at work, i.e. being promoted or in zone for a promotion or I landed another client.
Talking is also more about what we do throughout the day and what we are excited about. It is important to also share with your spouse how you feel about something and the other listen. There have been times where my husband feels like he’s been put on the back burner because I am a caregiver 24/7.
If he hadn’t told me that I wouldn’t have known his frustrations, and wouldn’t have been able to work on changing a few things. As you can see, communication is IMPORTANT. Communicate with your spouse!
We as human beings love to be held, we love affection. Same goes for marriage. Whether it’s a simple gesture as holding hands in the car while we drive to our destination, cuddles on the couch, or even a light touch while we’re both busy handling the house or children.
It’s simple but effective.
Next time you see your spouse, give them a hug or if you’re feeling a little frisky – a butt tap!
Support Their Dreams
I know I promised five tips but I am going to share one more, this is important. Listen up, you need to support your spouse’s dreams. They are just important as your dreams. My husband made the difficult decision of going away for nine months to become a Warrant Officer. I honestly didn’t want him to go but I knew that this was important to him and it will help us in the future.
I supported his dream.
My husband supports my dream of being a work at home mom as a Virtual Assistant while being a care-giver for our son with a disability. He teases me about it but he knows it is my goal, my passion. He’s even agreed to turn our guest room into a full office.
Support your spouses goals!
My Final Thoughts
Marriage is definitely hard, I totally get it. Many things can be thrown your way but if you truly love someone you will make an effort. You can’t expect marriage to work if you’re only half way in.
You got this!
What are your fool-proof ways to keep marriage strong after kids? Let me know below, I would love to hear it!