Married With Children: A New Plot

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Married with Children is a popular comedy series. Yet underneath is an issue that is of great concern to millions. While children are universally celebrated as a blessing, they can pose serious challenges to married couples.

Consider a couple in their first years of marriage. They are still trying to work through the years of cultural differences that are now united as one. They have become the focal point of each other's life. The wife has the undivided attention of her husband and vice versa.

In comes newborn. With the best will in the world, newborn automatically moves to centre stage for this first-time mother. This experience is taxing physically and emotionally for her. She is totally drained and does her best to recharge her batteries while newborn goes to sleep.

Meanwhile, Dad - proud Dad works at getting into the action and being supportive. Yet, there is a lingering longing for some of the affection to which he had become accustomed but is now being directed at newborn. The private moments are no longer hot and spicy as Mom is totally frazzled and hardly able to entertain intimate advances.

It is not difficult to see that if this situation is not properly addressed tensions could arise in the relationship. It is particularly difficult for men who find that they have been replaced as the apple of their wives' eyes. This situation is not to be ignored! Men need to dig deep and find coping mechanisms that work for them.

One strategy is to channel your emotions into loving your offspring. This has the spin-off effect of relieving wives of taxing task of caring for the child. Being first to respond to cries at 3 a.m. will endear husbands to wife and child. At the same time, wives should not be insensitive to the feelings of their partners. Taking care of a newborn is not easy. This is particularly true if it is the first child. Mothers have to work through a range of new challenges non-stop. This takes place in a context of doubts and fears as to how well they are performing the task of motherhood. This is not easy.

Against this background, wives are called upon to fulfill yet another responsibility. It is the capacity to cope with diverse demands on them physically and emotionally that makes the wife/mother role very difficult. But you are committed to your partner as well.

In the overall context, wives need to take care to demonstrate that his role is not diminished. Keeping the relationship warm is not to be neglected. One excellent way to deal with the entrance of a child in the marriage is to get help to relieve both partners for time away together. At least once per week, get a trusted baby sitter to give you a chance to maintain the connection with each other.

The best solution is to share the newborn with loving, caring family members. Get them involved in all aspects of duties from changing diapers, through washing bottles, rocking to sleep and providing safe and enriching entertainment. This is a great way for many persons to enjoy taking care of the child while giving him or her the opportunity to be exposed to different styles. This is likely to develop positive inter-personal skills and emotional intelligence.

When the extended family is involved in feeding, changing, teaching, entertaining and empowering the child, s/he is very comfortable under the care of different individuals. This is great for the development of the people skills of the child.

This approach takes a lot of pressure off his parents who have busy schedules. In addition, the out pouring of love can only manifest itself as high self-esteem in later years.

It is important that couples do not underestimate the challenge that the entry of a newborn represents. However, with insightful preparation some of the potentially stressful experiences can be avoided.

Remember to get over the hurdle of merging the cultural experiences of the partners before having children. Also, prepare a solid financial base the reflects the true cost of taking care of a child. Then share the child with loving family and friends. Finally, take care to fan the flames of love between you and your spouse.


TrevorESSmith is an author (Success in Marriage - Amazon) and people skills and performance enhancement specialist. He is a hands-on practitioner in the areas of Inter-personal relations, Marketing, Sales, HR and Management processes.
He presents unique perspectives on inter-personal relationships, leadership, team building, customer service, technology and time mastery.

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