How do you parent with your husband?
Are you both on the same playing field or does one do more than the other?
There is nothing worse than keeping score or being on different pages, which happens in a lot of marriages. For us, I know it can be difficult because we both work full time and feel pulled in so many different directions. I am sure my husband doesn’t know what to do sometimes as I have certain ways of doing things. But, that doesn’t mean the brunt of it should fall on me. Sure, do I need to relax, absolutely. Does my husband need to follow how some things are done, for sure. The key is to co-parent. No, I don’t mean through divorce, but through marriage. You had a child together, now you need to work together.
You Are on the Same Team
Men are a different species, let’s be honest. We do things completely different than men. Remember the phrase “Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus”? This statement couldn’t be truer, right? But, because we are different species, what does that mean when it comes to parenting our children? It means that you can’t do it all, nor should you do it all.
If you don’t want to take the brunt of parenting, than I suggest you sit down with a cup of coffee and read through this list. I am going to tell you things that you don’t want to do. Some you will roll your eyes at and others you might laugh at. But, we know how men are and sometimes we have to use a little more honey to get what we want.
Here is the list. Remember……doing these things will take the weight off your shoulders and allow your husband to parent with you and share in the responsibility.
- Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff – we all know we have our own way of doing something, but sometimes we need to just let it go and not sweat the small stuff. If your hubby doesn’t put the dishes in the dishwasher the same way you do…..or put the hair tie in your little girl’s hair just right, keep your lips shut. At least he did it, right? There are so many worse things that could raise your blood pressure and this isn’t one of them. Stop stressing! There are bigger fish to fry in this world, so let it go.
- Don’t Think They Will Do It as Good As You – let’s all be honest, we know our husbands won’t do something the way we would. It’s just that simple. Men are not as detail oriented as women, so don’t expect them to do it as good as you. If you husband cleans the kitchen after dinner, and its sloppy and you think you would have cleaned it better, just keep it to yourself. These thoughts are negative and will get you on the path to nowhere. If you don’t like what they did, go over it again when they aren’t looking. If you got critiqued every time you did something, do you think you would keep trying? No, and that’s not what you want from your husband. You need his help so be grateful that they helped.
- Show Gratitude – let your husband know how thankful you are for the effort he puts in towards your family and the half he upholds. No, this isn’t necessary or even in the realm of what women should have to do, but men operate on encouragement. Come on….we all know how far a thank you goes with our husbands. It gives them the little oomph that they need in order to keep going. Men’s brains work differently than ours; it’s just the way it is.
- Make Time for Each Other…Without the Kids – key word (without). I know it’s hard and you might feel guilty about not taking little Johnny, but I’m here to tell you that you shouldn’t. You and your husband need this time alone to rejuvenate your relationship. It’s a time to check in with your partner, connect and do something that doesn’t involve feeding, potty breaks or spit up. We loved each other before we had kids, now we need to keep that alive for the kids.
- Take Time Apart – just as it’s important to have time together, we also need time apart. This is the time to invest in ourselves and fill up your tank. Use this time for a hobby you may have or time to get to the gym or go for a run. Whatever it is that you love to do for yourself, do it. It may be something more fun like getting a pedicure or just simply watching Real Housewives. Whatever it may be, take the time apart and enjoy it. You will be dying to give him a big smooch when you return to him.
- Don’t Treat Them Like Your Assistant – our partners are not our personal assistants. Yes, they are there to take half the workload when it comes to parenting, but they are not your assistant to take directives. If you need help with something, communicate that to your partner, but don’t use them as your “Bitch”. They are on an equal playing field with you and don’t need to take your shit. Communication is the key and that’s what you need to do, communicate not bark. Use your voice if you need help with something but never mistreat them and their position as a father. They are co-parenting with you not helping you or doing a favor for you. The kids are both of your responsibility.
I know it’s easier said than done, but remember why you got married and had kids. You wanted to embark on this journey together. Anyone can parent, it’s not that you can’t do it, but why should you do it alone?
Start out slow with biting your lip when you are dying to say something. Give a thank you when he is least expecting it. Trust me, you will have an eager beaver on your hands in no time.