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When is it Time for Marriage Counseling?

If you are considering whether or not it’s time for marriage counseling, then it probably is! A little guidance can help even the most healthy relationship. But it’s especially important if you find yourself struggling to connect with your partner. For example, if you are having communication issues. In addition, if there is broken trust within the marriage or an affair, a counselor can help you deal with it. If the intimacy in your marriage has dropped off or changed, it’s not a bad idea to seek help. And finally, even if your relationship is perfect, it’s always a good idea to check in with a counselor periodically. Hopefully, you’ll be able to sort out any issues you are your partner are having and build a much stronger relationship.

When is it Time for Marriage Counseling? How to Know When You Need Help

You Have Trouble Communicating

One reason why it might be time for marriage counseling is if you are struggling to communicate. If it feels like you and your partner are often not on the same page, it might be time to get help. A marriage counselor can help you find ways of communicating with each other effectively. There are many different ways of communicating, and your partner will likely respond better to some than others. A counselor can help you identify these.

Broken Trust

Another reason it might be time for marriage counseling is if there is a lack of trust in the relationship. For example, if one of you has had an affair. This can be incredibly painful to deal with. A therapist can help you sort out your feelings and communicate with your partner about the affair.

Lack of Intimacy

Lack of intimacy might be another thing that lets you know it’s time for marriage counseling. If your sex life has changed recently or dropped off completely, it can be a sign that there is something amiss in your relationship. It might not necessarily be a dire warning, but it might be a sign that your partner is dealing with some new emotions. A counselor can help bring these to light in a way where you can talk about them together.

Things are Great

Finally, it might be time for marriage counseling…if things are going great! Marriage counseling doesn’t necessarily mean there is anything wrong with your relationship. Counseling can help you learn to have difficult conversations more easily with each other. It can also help you identify areas where you might be able to improve your relationship. Seeing a therapist can help you prepare for any bumps that come along.

Many different things can signal that it’s time for marriage counseling. Any major changes in your relationship are a great reason to seek some outside help. If you are having trouble communicating with your partner, or feel you’re not on the same page, it might be time. In addition, if the trust has been broken, a counselor can help you sort out your feelings. A lack of intimacy or change in your sex life can be a great time to check in with a counselor. And finally, even if things are going great, seeing a marriage therapist is always helpful. They can help you learn to communicate better so that you’re prepared to handle anything that comes your way. Hopefully, you’ll be able to get the help you need to make your marriage as strong as possible.

The First Week of Joint Custody

The first week of joint custody can be a big change in your life. It can often cause a lot of stress for you, your ex, and your children. However, no matter how different it feels, you will get used to the new schedule eventually. Children are incredibly resilient and will bounce back quickly as well. Talk to your children ahead of time so that they know what the plan is. Keep their schedules as consistent as possible to their old schedule and between you and your ex’s homes. Keep your cool with your ex and try to put your co-parenting relationship first. And finally, expect issues the first week. This is a big adjustment and takes some getting used to. The more flexible you can be, the better. You’ll adjust and get used to your new normal quickly.

The First Week of Joint Custody: Getting Used to the New Normal

Talk to Your Children

The first week of joint custody might be a big upheaval for your children. Therefore, it’s important to prepare them ahead of time. Talk to them about what their schedule will look like for the week. Especially if they’ll be spending a few nights at a new house with your partner. Listen to their concerns and reassure them. For example, make sure that they know how much you love them. And also reassure them that they will adjust to their new schedule quickly.

Keep Schedules the Same

The first week of joint custody is much easier if you can keep some consistency in your children’s schedule. Children thrive on repetition and schedule. Try to keep their schedule as similar to normal as possible. There will be some times when you’ll need to adjust, but try to keep things as close as possible. Also, try to make sure that you and your ex are keeping consistent schedules across your two homes. For example, similar nap times, wake times, and mealtimes.

Keep Your Cool

It’s important to keep your cool with your ex during the first week of joint custody. You will need to work together with them for the rest of your lives, so now’s a great time to start. Be understanding if they need to make changes to the schedule. Hopefully, in return, they’ll be flexible with you if you need to make changes. Never bad-mouth them on social media or with your friends. And of course, never bad-mouth them in front of your children.

Expect Mishaps

During the first week of joint custody, you should plan to have some mishaps. This is a big adjustment and it likely won’t go perfectly smoothly the first week. The more you prepare for things to go wrong, the less stress it will cause. Try to stay as flexible as possible and anticipate some missteps along the way. You’ll work out the kinks soon enough.

The first week of joint custody is a big change in your life and your children’s lives. It can be a scary time for you and them. So try to remember that the stress you feel over the change will be gone soon. You’ll quickly adjust to your new normal. Likewise, your children will adjust quickly to their new schedules. Try to prepare them ahead of time and listen to their concerns. Keep consistency in their schedules as much as is possible. Play nicely with your ex and remember to put your co-parenting relationship first. And of course, try to stay flexible when the inevitable snags happen during the first week. This is a big adjustment for everybody, so there will likely be a few missteps here and there. But everybody will adjust quickly and you’ll be able to begin your new life post-divorce.

Relationship Tips When Working from Home

With so many people working from home for such a long time, many relationships are feeling the strain. It can be hard to keep the romance alive when you are around your partner every waking moment. While many people have gone back to work in person, many companies are switching to more long-term work-from-home set-ups. Employees have mixed feelings about this. But one thing is for sure: it can change your relationship dynamic. To keep the romance alive, try to make a schedule and stick to it. In addition, get up and put on clothes every day. Make sure to carve out some time alone each day. And finally, also make sure to carve out some dedicated couples time as well. It’s easy to forget that a relationship takes effort, but putting in the work will make you both happier and your relationship stronger.

Relationship Tips When Working from Home: How to Keep the Romance Alive

Make a Schedule

When working from home, it’s important to remember to stick to a schedule. It can be easy to fall into a pattern of lounging around or waiting until a few minutes before your first zoom call to get out of bed. But your mental health will be better if you start the day with a similar routine. Try to get up around the same time each day, and try to keep a similar bedtime as well. Structure your day with work, breaks, and some time to get outside in the fresh air for a bit.

Get Dressed

Another important thing to remember when working from home is to get dressed each day. This might seem silly but it can really change your attitude. Getting up, showering, and putting on clothes can boost your confidence and help you approach the day with a more productive attitude. It can also keep the romance alive a bit more when you and your partner are clean and in something other than pajamas!

Make Time for Yourself

It’s also very important to make time for yourself when working from home. Especially if you and your partner are both working from home full time and even more so if you have children. Carve out some time each day to be alone and to do something that makes you feel happy. It could be as simple as walking the dog, a phone call with a friend, or a bath. You can ask your partner to get out of the house for a little while and offer to switch with them if you feel like you want to be alone. Take a short drive, go run an errand, or get out for a walk to give them privacy.

Make Time for Each Other

While it’s important to take time for yourself when working from home it’s also important to make time for your partner as well. It’s easy to let the romance fade a little when you see each other day in and day out. But talking briefly between Zoom meetings isn’t really the type of quality time that a relationship needs. Try to set aside some time each week where the two of you can connect on non-work things. Keep the phones off and sit down for a meal together or go and do an activity that makes you feel close.

Working from home can be a difficult transition for many couples. While you typically would spend the day apart and then reconnect at night after work, you’re suddenly together all the time. It’s easy to get irritated and let the romance fade. To keep your relationship healthy, try to maintain a schedule as if you are still going into the office. That includes getting up, showering, and getting dressed each day. You don’t need to wear your most uncomfortable suit, but at least change out of your pajamas. Make time for yourself each and every day. And finally, it’s important to also carve out time to be together as a couple. It can be a difficult transition, but there are also a lot of benefits to working at home. Just make sure that you and your partner are on the same page and putting in equal effort into your relationship.

Stepparent Discipline: What’s Acceptable?

One of the trickiest things to navigate if you remarry and create a blended family is stepparent discipline. Co-parenting comes in many forms and this is absolutely one of them that takes a bit of adjustment. After all, you want to both be a good parent, but also don’t want them to resent you. Striking that balance can be hard, but you can make it easier by using the right techniques…

Stepparent Discipline: Do It Right

Let your spouse take the lead

When it comes to stepparent discipline, the stepparent shouldn’t be taking the lead initially. During those early months, your stepchild may not fully respect your authority. Therefore, when you do try and discipline them, they’ll either ignore you or get even worse. That’s why you want your partner to take control.

It’s good to let your spouse handle discipline at first. They’ll be more experienced, and your stepchild will hold more respect for what they say. You can try to talk to them in a positive manner when they’re misbehaving and see if they stop. But if they don’t, then let your partner take over.

Don’t be too harsh

When it comes time to implement some stepparent discipline, it’s important to not go to far. Being too harsh on your stepchild will cause them to view you as mean and hurt your relationship. Adjusting to being a stepparent can be hard and you may be a bit stressed. Still, you don’t want that to come out in your punishments.

Your punishments should ideally fit with what your stepchild has done wrong. For example, if they were being mean to someone else, you shouldn’t ground them for a week. Instead, explain why what they did was wrong and send them to their room to calm down. When they don’t feel like they’re being punished unfairly, kids tend to better understand why what they did was wrong.

Hear them out

An important part of stepparent discipline is giving your stepchild a chance to tell their side of things. Much like you have, they too have been going through a lot of change. Not only did they have to deal with their parents divorcing, but now they must adjust to a “new” family. This can bring up a lot of emotions and make them act out in response.

However, by giving them a chance to talk, you can better understand how they feel. That way, you can see why they may be acting a certain way. Instead of punishing them, encourage them to talk to you and use it as a chance to help them and improve your bond.

Vacations with Split Custody During the Summer

Summertime can bring the stress of figuring out vacations with split custody if you’ve recently been through a divorce. Split custody can be easy to figure out during the school year, but when summer hits, things can get more complicated. It’s important to set rules and expectations about summer vacation plans in your parenting plan in advance. In addition, make sure and set boundaries about what you’re comfortable with. Be flexible and try to be as accommodating as possible. And finally, stay in communication while your children are traveling. Hopefully, you’ll be able to work out an easy agreement where both you and your ex can enjoy some awesome summer vacation time with your children.

Vacations with Split Custody During the Summer: Enjoy Your Holidays

Lay it Out in Parenting Plan

One way to handle vacations with split custody is to lay them out in your broad parenting plan. When you sit down together to divvy up your custody arrangement, you can specify how many days you each get of vacation. For example, you can have language saying that you each get to take a ten-day vacation with the children each summer. Work it out however it fits best with your family’s needs.

Set Boundaries

Another important thing to do when dealing with vacations with split custody is to set boundaries. Make sure that you and your ex are on the same page as each other about where you each are allowed to take the children. Is it ok to leave the country? Or would you rather both stay within driving distance? In addition, set boundaries regarding who can join on the vacation. Can the kids bring a friend? If you are dating somebody, should they join? It’s best to lay all of this out ahead of time so that there isn’t drama or confusion when the time comes to plan trips.

Be Flexible

One thing that can be very helpful when figuring out vacations with split custody is to be flexible. It might sound difficult, especially if your divorce is contentious. However, the more reasonable you are, the more reasonable your partner will be when it’s you asking for extra vacation time. Remember that the key to good co-parenting is to try and be flexible and work together. Also, stop and consider what is best for your kids. You might not want to give up extra time with them. However, if it means cutting a trip short, it might be in their best interest to give up some of your time.

Stay In Communication

Finally, another thing to do when dealing with vacations with split custody is to stay in touch. While you are traveling and when your ex is traveling, have a policy of constant communication with the other parent. You’ll want to make sure that the children are safe. And that you and your ex are on the same page as far as boundaries go. Staying in constant contact will prevent one parent from being calm about things than the other.

Dealing with vacations with split custody can be stress-inducing. The key to preventing arguments is to lay out everything ahead of time. Your parenting plan should have language about vacations spelled out clearly. In addition, make sure that you’ve set clear-cut boundaries with your plan as well. That way you can prevent last-minute questions from coming up. Try to be flexible and accommodating whenever possible. Remember that if you are, it’s more likely that your ex will be too. And finally, stay in communication while vacationing to make sure that you and your ex are on the same page. Hopefully, you’ll be able to figure out vacation plans without any drama and find a summer schedule that works for everybody.

Writing a Parenting Plan: Smooth Transitions

Writing a parenting plan is very important when figuring out how your joint custody situation will work. It’s important to include things like your basic schedule. In addition, make sure to include things like holidays and vacations. Times when the schedule will be interrupted. You’ll also lay out a plan for expenses and how to pay for childcare. And finally, include how you’ll make big decisions. Consider things like what religion your children will be brought up in, curfew, diet, healthcare, school decisions, etc. You’ll need a plan in place so that you and your partner are on the same page with all major parenting decisions. Having a parenting plan in place will make your divorce much smoother and will help your children adjust to their new lives.

Writing a Parenting Plan: What to Include in Your Discussions

Schedule

One thing that’s important to include when writing a parenting plan is a basic schedule. This should involve how many days each parent has the children in a row, and what the schedule looks like. Include things like when and where you’ll transfer kids from one parent to another. Oftentimes, families use school as a way of transferring kids. For example, one parent drops them off and another picks them up. Remember that your plan can change as your children age.

Holidays and Vacations

In addition to the regular custody schedule, you should consider holidays and vacations when writing a parenting plan. These are times when the normal schedule might get interrupted. Decide how you’ll handle major holidays. Some parents choose to split them up throughout the year or switch years when each parent has the kids. Remember that when you go on vacation, you might need extra days. Don’t forget holidays like Mother’s Day and Father’s Day where you will most likely want to spend time with your children.

Expenses

Next, when writing a parenting plan, make sure to include a financial plan. You and your ex should decide on how you’ll be paying for childcare expenses. Include things like daycare, school supplies, and saving for college. You should include how you’ll handle any unexpected expenses that come up. For example, large medical bills. Try to factor in everyday expenses as well as larger expenses. Even though you don’t have to buy new sizes of clothes every day, the cost can still add up once or twice a year.

Important Decisions

Finally, one last thing to include when writing a parenting plan is how you’ll handle big decisions. You may want to go ahead and lay some ground rules as far as what your children’s futures will look like. Consider things like what religion you want to raise them in. What schools would you like them to attend? How will you each discipline and set boundaries for them? Don’t forget about things like curfew, diet, activities, and hobbies, and seeing friends and family.

Writing a parenting plan is important for figuring out how your life will look post-divorce. Make sure and include a basic schedule for custody as well as specifics for holidays and vacations. Include a financial plan for how you and your ex will pay for child-related expenses moving forward. And don’t forget about establishing ground rules for important decisions in the future. Creating a comprehensive parenting plan will help you in the future if any issues come up. It can also make the transition easier for your children when they go from living in one household with both parents to a split custody situation.