Self-Care for Busy Parents (Couples Edition)

By Rachel Wong - March 13, 2021
Self-Care for Busy Parents (Couples Edition)

They said, life ends when you get a child. They said, romance die once you are married. 

This doesn't have to be true for you. 

In this episode, I share hot tips on how husband and wife can practice self-care that will help you reconnect, rekindle and maintain the relationship together. 

Here are also a bingo that you and your spouse can try accomplishing together within a month.

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---podcast transcript - - -

Hi, I am Rachel Wong, and I help busy parents reconnect with themselves and each other and find more joy in life and with their family. 

My car broke down in the middle of nowhere, and it started raining. My mobile phone was low in battery, and there was a bad signal too. When I thought I was totally screwed, here comes a knight in shining armour, except that he is in his old blue Charade with faded paint. He offered to help me; he waited with me until help came. We both chatted while waiting for help and found common ground. We became friends. Years later, he asked for my hand in marriage.

WOW! Rachel, are you serious? Your love story seems like it came out of the movie! 

No, I am just kidding. But I love to think of mine as a very romantic one as well. In reality, he is a friend of my friend, he was my teacher as well, he did have a blue Charade with faded paint, and we did wait for help due to broken down car before. But it was nothing like what I wrote above. But the point is, we met, we are married, and I am immensely grateful that he is my husband and now the father of my daughter.

Everyone said, once you are married, things change. Things worsen even when you start a family. They are not totally wrong. 

Once we are married, romance seems to die off for some people. Once we get our family, our priority shifts, we put so much time into so many other things, we neglect our spouse and take advantage that 'they will understand'. But more often than not, the reason for divorce and separations are a lot due to miscommunication, lose of interest and probably even like "I actually don't need you in my life". 

And why is this? This is because we don't prioritise each other enough. Especially in a busy world today where both parents are working with children, and sometimes without help. We neglect ourselves, and we neglect our spouses. 

Suppose you resonate with what I say above if you have not spent time with your spouse one on one. Please read on because the last thing you will want is a broken family. Yes, some single families with a single parent still strive, and they can be happier. But if we can prevent it, wouldn't we want to? 

You wouldn't want to be in a situation whereby you need to decide if you want to divorce or separate from the man who won your heart in so many ways. 

Even if you are not on the brink of divorce. If it is a little tense or argues a lot more recently and find it hard to solve. Maybe what I am going to suggest for you will help you. 

My husband and I are in Singapore with only 1 child, but we are both working, and we have very little help in Singapore. We do not have a helper. My sister-in-law is around, I have some relatives, but we often try to do it by ourselves because we can manage. But we do ask for help when we need and this is something that each of us should learn to do. Because asking for help does not make you less of a parent, it can help you and your spouse and your family! 

Whether or not you are facing any problem with your spouse, I hope these tips rekindle or helps maintain your relationship and helps you reconnect with yourself too! Trust me, when you spend time taking care of yourself, maintain the relationship with your spouse, you definitely able to have a happier family. 

Tip #1: Block out dates for dates! 

Being married and with so many more commitments does not call for you to neglect to connect with your spouse. It is even more important that you prioritize and take time out together as a couple despite all the commitments. I get it! You can't find the time. And this is where we should consider help (and don't feel guilty about it!)

Is your child in childcare? Are you able to take her up slightly later once in a while so that you and your husband can head out for an hour or 2 to just connect?

Were there anyone in town that could take them for a while?

Perhaps hiring a part-time nanny for 2 hours?

Or, plan among your mommy friends who has bubs around the same age. So you will be able to go out with your husband. Next time, be the one watching your friends' children so that they get to go out.

We do not have many leaves. But we take 1 or 2 leaves every year, send our child to childcare, and we go out for a date. It is not many times, but it is better than nothing. 

Tip #2: Honour your couple time every night (or at least most of the nights)

We are always exhausted when our kids go to bed, and all of us would want to sleep in. Sometimes, we said that we are tired, but we are lying next to each other, scrolling our handphones? Maybe try putting your phone away and talk to each other every night. Have a rule, maybe? By 10 pm, the phone should be plug away, and we should be in bed spending time - watching movies, talking, playing games together.

This is the time you get to listen and share with your spouse. Plan an exciting future together. Research on your next vacation together when we can travel again. Have devotion together—so many possibilities.

Tip #3: Appreciate each other

This can be done almost anytime, even when you are busy! Appreciate what each other is doing for the family. Say thank you, with a smile (you don't know how important your smile is... no one wants to end up marrying and living with one who is not happy). 

To be more intentional, practice saying something you are thankful for your spouse before bed every night.

Self-care is not hard; you need to find one that is right for you and that you and your spouse enjoy and practice. There are definitely more ideas and tips. 

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