Making the decision to have a child is momentous. It is to decide forever to have your heart go walking around outside your body.

Saturday, 17 March 2012

The night is darkest just before the dawn...

When so much of your time is taken nurturing the relationship you have with your child/children, it is sometimes easy to forget that there are other relationships that need nurture too.

Having a child will definitely change the dynamics of daily life but most importantly it can impact on those relationships closest to you. Particularly the relationship you share with your significant other.

To begin with, after a baby is born, it feels as though there is no time at all. Each day seems to require at least an additional half a day tagged on the end just to get everything done. It is like you have literally been dropped full force into the depths of a very deep pool! You stumble through the first few weeks and months, taking as much enjoyment from the experience as you possibly can, inbetween the sleep deprivation and ulcer inducing stress that comes from the spiralling costs involved in raising a child. With so much to buy and so little money to go around, most months can feel like a desperate struggle, constantly robbing Peter to feed Paul. And what is that saying 'When money goes out the door, love flies out the window'? 

You have distant memories of the days when you had that thing called 'disposable income' and 'free-time' to spend it in. Becoming a family robs you of any spare cash and even if you did have some, you doubt you would have the time to enjoy it. Not to say that couples always need money to have a good time, but it certainly helps and not having to worry about it helps even more. But having a child was your choice, right? So you take it like a grown up, like your parents had to, and you find new and exciting ways to have fun without the need for money. Well I guess that depends on whether you actually have the energy or enthusiasm to think of anything other than getting from one end of the day to the other and when you can next get some sleep! 

So as the days and months drift by you seem to spend more and more moments apart, between work, child-care and sleep, the shopping, cleaning, cooking and other commitments (family, friends etc..), the person you live with, the person you share your life with, the person you made this beautiful child with begins to become a stranger to you. You see them everyday, you pass each other on the landing or coming in and out of the bathroom, you sleep next to them in the bed, you share a conversation or a meal but you don't really see them anymore. And eventually, given enough time, you look up and don't even recognise the person staring back at you. You went from lovers and best-friends to house-mates that are time-sharing a child. And you can't imagine how or when this all happened! 

Sad isn't it?! And it happens to so many couples, behind closed doors you never really know what is going on. 

So what can you do to salvage this? Well first of all I guess the most important thing is to make sure there is something to salvage, not all couples are going to make it. That's just life I guess. Something left to salvage? Then look inside yourself and except responsibility for your part in how it all went wrong, because very rarely is it all one sided. Next try to remember all the reasons why you first fell in love, why you made the monumental decision to have a child together, except the fact that your relationship will never be how it was pre-child/children but that it could be better, because you are part of something amazing now, a family. And above all, talk, talk, talk, talk, talk and talk some more. Because with love, "There is nothing lost, that cannot be found, if sought"...And so you can find a way back to each other, to be happy, to be contented and as one of my best-friends recently told me, 'There is a lot to be said for being contented' and I am inclined to agree, it certainly makes the world a brighter place.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you. The Truth, too, can be romantic and beautiful. Like the skies above a clear sea, once the storm has passed. Love Acknowledged, is a good reason to go on living !