10 Tips for Sustaining a Marriage While Raising Kids


5. If you share a hobby or interest, you're blessed. If you don't, find one. Then, schedule time to enjoy this interest together. A friend of my daughter's says she knows there's trouble between her parents when they don't play much golf.

6. Call up the feelings you had when you first met your spouse. Your initial feelings of euphoria over this exciting new person in your life can be recalled during the monotony of the laundry and the mortgage payments. Just remember that feeling when you need a zap of "partner inspiration."

7. Learn the fine art of tolerance. My husband is a master at this. He rarely, if ever, criticizes me--and believe me there is much to criticize. If you must criticize, do it lovingly.

8. No family is perfect and every family deals with difficulties. Perhaps you have a blended family, in-laws living with you, suffocating debt, illness, or job loss. It's through these tough times that you can grow stronger as a duo. Be careful where you lay blame and practice being kind rather than being right.

9. Many readers over the years have written to say that they've used the principles in 10 Principles for Spiritual Parenting with their husband or wife turning it into "10 Principles for Spiritual Spousing." You might be inspired to go through the book with an eye for how to make magic out of the ordinary with your partner, truly listen, and make each day a new beginning.

10. Appreciate and acknowledge each other in front of the kids --"Didn't Daddy make a great breakfast this morning?" "Did you see Mom skate a perfect figure 8?" "Thanks for coming home early tonight so we could all eat dinner together, I know it was a big effort."

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