If you are one of those people who grew up not sure if you'd ever want kids, and now you find yourself married to the perfect spouse and thinking children might be in your not-so-distant future, you are not alone. If you are worried that having these kids will ruin your marriage, you are not alone, either. While it will take some work, and while it will certainly change your life, having a baby doesn't have to ruin your marriage. You just have to get a little creative about how you think of spending time together, and you have to make the most of the time you have.
Remember when you were a little kid and you used to complain about having to go to bed earlier than all of the adults? There was a reason your mom and dad made you go to sleep earlier than they did. They use the after-bedtime hours as adult time. This is the time for moms and dads to watch what they want on television, or to watch a movie not suitable for children. You might be exhausted when you put your kids to sleep, but enforcing a strict bedtime is good for the child and the parents. It gives the child a sense of routine, and a good night's sleep, while it gives the parents some quality time together in the comfort of their own home.
Some parents may be wary of hiring a babysitter who is not a family member, but sometimes it is necessary if you ever want to get out of the house with just the two of you. Find someone you trust by asking a trusted neighbor or by consulting online babysitting and nanny searches. These internet babysitting profiles often run background checks and allow you to interview people before hiring them, which can put your mind at ease. Hiring a babysitter can really add up, though, from a cost standpoint. If hiring a babysitter is too expensive, see if you can trade off nights with the parents of your child's friends. You take all the kids for a night one week, and then the next week, the other parents take their turn. This can be beneficial for everyone involved, because it allows you to spend less money while still being able to have someone you trust watch your kids, and your kids get to play with their friends every week.
Schedule Date Night
Those mommy calendars are no joke. When you have little kids running around, you need to schedule every minute of every day. Before kids, you probably had spontaneous date nights all of the time, but after kids, this can be much harder than it used to be. There is no shame in scheduling a date night. Put it on the calendar, and make sure everyone knows that you and your spouse are going out of town for a night, or maybe just dinner. It doesn't matter what you do; what matters is that you do it alone.
While it's definitely not the same as spending time alone, having quality family time every night is important for everyone. When you spend time with your kids, talking to them and sharing stories about your days and being excited about each others projects, this can foster a sense of companionship among the family. Even if you don't feel like talking one day, pick a favorite movie or television show and cuddle up each other with a great blanket. You'll feel great having spent quality time together with your family.