BE POS­I­TIVE

Your Baby & Toddler - - Features -

There are cou­ples who de­cide never to have kids be­cause they don’t feel up to the neg­a­tive in­flu­ence chil­dren have on a mar­riage. There are also nu­mer­ous stud­ies that show that cou­ples who de­cide to re­main child­less have a higher like­li­hood of a happy mar­riage.

Mar­riage is al­ready a chal­lenge, and chil­dren are in­clined to make cracks in a mar­riage burst wide open and se­ri­ously com­pli­cate un­der­ly­ing prob­lems. So when you sit on your child­less friend’s white sofa and mar­vel at her de­signer life, re­mem­ber that the flip side of the coin is also true.

Chil­dren can bring a won­der­ful new di­men­sion to your mar­riage and help you grow and chal­lenge you to be a bet­ter per­son. They can en­rich your life and bring much joy and plea­sure all the way into your old age.

Chil­dren can deepen your love for your part­ner and cre­ate a spe­cial bond be­tween you. But it all de­pends on you. To have a pos­i­tive at­ti­tude and take care of your mar­riage is a choice you make. And it’s a choice that will be tested again and again over time. As a par­ent you’re of­ten un­sure about things. But a pos­i­tive at­ti­tude is the best way to start.

“It was only with our sec­ond child that I re­alised that my hus­band and I sel­dom talk about any­thing but the chil­dren. With your first child it’s an ad­ven­ture for both of you, and it’s fun talk­ing about your baby.

“But there came a point with our sec­ond child when I felt like I wanted to scream when he started ask­ing me about the chil­dren. It was as if he couldn’t as­so­ciate me with any­thing else but the chil­dren,” says Han­lie (32).

“When our baby ar­rived it sud­denly felt like I could do noth­ing right. I ad­mit that I didn’t read as much about child­care as my wife did but it was as if she wanted to bite my head off ev­ery time I asked some­thing or made a sug­ges­tion. It’s as if I had to an­tic­i­pate all kinds of things and come to cer­tain con­clu­sions from the in­for­ma­tion she gave me – it felt like she ex­pected me to read her mind.

“She still com­plains that she has to spell ev­ery­thing out for me, but it’s un­for­tu­nately the only way in which I can con­fi­dently make a con­tri­bu­tion! It changed our re­la­tion­ship sub­stan­tially,” shares Le Roux (37).

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