Monday, October 29, 2012


Marriage Monday!

Time again to remember how important our marriages are in this adoption journey. Here is another great post from Brad Aldrich at One Flesh Marriage

Does your marriage have a case of the children-pox? The tell-tale signs of this insidious disease manifest when a married couple allows their relationship to be always and only  about the kids. Why is this such a problem in marriages today? 
Before we look at the solution to this problem let’s talk about how many couples contract the illness. 

The Illness:

Contrary to popular belief, this illness is caught long before a couple has their first child. Part of the problem comes from how each of us defines the word happiness
Men tend to measure happiness in terms of results and successes. Women tend to measure happiness in terms of relationships. As we are dating both men and women see happiness as the same thing, the advancement of the relationship. Once we are married this changes. 
Men can drift into focus on the next new challenge, often in the form of new work providing for their new responsibility. While men are off hunting their next “result” wives are seeking the "happily ever after" relationship they had always dreamed of. 
Along comes baby, or child either through birth or adoption, and lo and behold many women find exactly what they feel they have been missing, a special relationship with someone who needs them. They throw themselves into the life of this new relationship and the children-pox progresses into a full blown case.
Guys, we often blame our wife for throwing herself into the life of the kids and ignoring us, (it is easy to see the case of pox happening this way), but I would challenge all of you to look further--to look how your relationship, or lack of a relationship with your wife, has contributed to the two of you catching the children pox.

Treat Your Children-Pox:

Early Inoculation:

Any couples reading this who have not jumped into the children stage yet should think about getting your shots before you do! Don’t get me wrong, I love parenting, but I am really glad that Kate and I had several years of just the two of us before we started having kids. I think this early inoculation of time can really help keep a married couple focused even when kids come along later. For those of you waiting to adopt, be intentional about "storing up" some time together before your child comes home. Those first months are intense and the season of adjustment is demanding on everyone in the family.

Annual Vaccination:

The simplest form of vaccination is a vacation, a vacation away together just the two of you! Once a year take one day or two days, if you can, to run away just the two of you! Spend time away reconnecting, talking, listening, loving, relaxing together! Don’t let money get in the way of this important time away. Budget for it all year if you have to. If you absolutely cannot afford to go away, then propose a kid swap with a couple that you trust. Offer to take their kids for a night or a weekend, while they get away then have them return the favor. That way you can at least have a night with the house all to yourselves. Just remember to spend the time reconnecting, not cleaning!

Monthly Treatment:

Date nights! Having a regular date night with your spouse is critical! Find time to get out of the house just the two of you at least once a month. Don’t be ashamed to schedule your time and put it on the calendar. That way you can prioritize it and honestly tell anyone demanding that time, “I’m sorry but I already have something on the calendar for that time.”

Daily Vitamins:

Make a point to have regular, hopefully daily, conversations with each other that have nothing to do with the kids. What are you doing at work? What are you reading? What are you thinking? Talk! You managed to do it while you were dating; it is time to remember how now. This small dose of time about the two of you will go a long way to keeping the children pox from fully taking over!

What do you do to keep the children-pox at bay in your marriage?

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