Our Marriage Was Falling Apart. Here’s How We Saved It.

Take care of your relationships.

We had “the talk.”

One night I sat next to my husband in a living room cluttered with toys. I asked him, “Are you happy? Because I’m not...”

We got back in shape.

It’s easy to sit around and talk about unconditional love, but let’s get real. You enjoy sex more if you’re in good shape. You don’t have to be skinny. You just have to put some effort into your body.

We stopped drinking (mostly).

Neither one of us felt like we were drinking that much. Gradually, a few drinks here and there to unwind turned into a few drinks almost every night. We were trying to dull our anxiety about the future.

We started eating healthier again.

We used to be healthy. Then the stress of multiple jobs and childcare kept luring us into the takeout trap.

We declared our boundaries.

Both of us were giving too much of our time away. For him it was his friends’ personal problems. For me it was work.

We re-negotiated the chore list.

Nothing kills a marriage quite like an unequal work load. Every major change in a relationship brings about a new list of responsibilities.

We started going out on the weekends.

The first year of parenthood is rough. If you’re like us, you basically become a hermit. You don’t go anywhere because crying babies make people angry. So you stay home or you take them to parks. Eventually, you forget what it’s like to actually go to a movie or a restaurant.

We started scheduling time for sex.

It’s pretty hard to have a long term relationship of any kind without sex. You can go a few weeks, or even a few months.

We started scheduling time for talks.

Babies have a way of eating up your attention.

We gave each other personal space.

You can’t run a relationship well without giving each other some time to yourselves. You have hobbies and interests. You have your own books and shows, and your own friends.

You can’t let things slide.

Relationships don’t end because of cheating or fights. They start ending way before that, when we stop investing in them.

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