I have been “accused” of being a home-wrecker and of using my blog to condone cheating. I was recently asked why I never try to “help” wives keep their husbands from cheating. Well, I believe I have given the wives out there some tips in earlier posts, but, I’m going to do it again.
I will never encourage anyone to go out looking for a married man to “tempt” away from his wife. Other women come in all varieties. Some of us are wives, some are divorced wives of cheating husbands, some are single. We all have one thing in common: we never set out to “seduce” a married man. First of all, I couldn’t seduce anyone if I tried. Sexy is definitely a word I would never use to describe me. So…how did I end up as the other woman? The answer is simple: I made him feel important. My man’s wife left him emotionally. After she had her baby, she no longer wanted him. When he and I first started talking after not seeing each other for years, I didn’t know he was married. An affair was not on his mind and it certainly wasn’t on MY mind.
I’m not making excuses. We spent a lot of time talking and I just assumed that he was single because of some of the things we talked about. He never mentioned a wife, or a child in the beginning. Looking back, I should have asked more questions, but hindsight is 20/20. I had my suspicions, but I didn’t want to believe it. After all, this is a good man who would never hurt anyone who loved him and who was good to him. He always went out of his way to help friends, family and me. By the time I found out for sure that he was actually married, I was hooked.
So…what can a couple do to get out of the rut of marriage and family? I think one of the most important things is to make each other feel special. I realize that sometimes, it’s hard. After all, we’re living in a time where it’s necessary for both partners to work outside of the home. Working, cooking, cleaning, taking care of a child or children all take a toll on a marriage. It’s easy for the couple to forget what drew them to each other in the first place. Before they know it, they have grown apart.
From the beginning of a marriage, the couple needs to stay connected. Just because you’re married doesn’t mean that the romance has to stop. At least once a week, have a date night. If you don’t have the time (or a babysitter) to go out, one of you could grab some take-out. The first one home could stop at the florist or grocery store and pick up some flowers (I’m sure someone gave them a vase as a wedding or shower gift!) and set the table (don’t forget the candles). If you have children, put them to bed early and sit down to a nice dinner. Talk to each other. Don’t talk about the kids for this one night. As a couple only talks about the kids, they find that the kids are all they CAN talk about. Talk about your likes and dislikes, talk about a book you read or a movie you saw (or want to see). Talk about a funny incident that happened at work, or something unusual you saw on your commute or when you went out to lunch. Once you start, I’m sure you could find a lot to talk about.
I know what you’re thinking: put the kids to bed EARLY?!?!?!? Yes. It can be done. Even newborns have a schedule. It may be trickier, but each parent knows their child and when they sleep. If a date night is planned every week from the beginning of a marriage and when a new baby is brought home, children will know to stay in their beds (or at least their rooms) when the parents say it’s bedtime. Trust me; I was a divorced mother of 2 boys under the age of 6. When I got home from work, I spent time with my kids, but I was tired!!!! They knew that bedtime was “stay in your room and be quiet so mommy can rest” time!
Every now and then, try something new. Get a sitter for a day and do something the wife wants to do. I’m not saying to torture your poor husband by a day of shopping in a mall, but I’m pretty sure he can live through a chick-flick. He might even enjoy going to a museum or a flea market. Be creative. When it’s the husband’s turn, maybe find a classic car show or a ball game (even I can stand to go to a ball game. It’s more fun at the stadium than watching it on TV). If you can’t get a sitter, take the kids. By going out to new places together, it will give you something to talk about on date night!
Now…for new parents. I know you’re exhausted! My first son was 22 months old when my second one was born. My husband did zero, zip, zilch, NOTHING to help out. Never changed a diaper or gave them a bath or fed them (OK…I breast-fed for the first year, but I always had a supply in the fridge he could have given them). I was a stay at home mom until my divorce when the boys were 2 and 4. Before that, I knew when the kids napped, so I napped. This way, I was “human” enough to cook dinner and spend some time with my husband. Bottom line: babies sleep! Take advantage of it. If both parents work, then maybe the husband could give his wife a couple of hours to herself a day or two a week. Give her time to go out with friends or just take a nap. She’ll be forever grateful! In the same respect, the wife needs to let her husband have a night out with the boys if he wants. Just remember…BOTH OF YOU…that a night out doesn’t mean getting stupid-drunk and flirting with anything that moves. It means going out, have a drink or two and connect with friends.
No matter how tired you are, always take the time to hug. Sometimes, it’s too tiring to even think of sex, but how much effort does cuddling take? Sit next to each other on the couch while watching TV. Put your head on your husband’s (or wife’s) lap. Don’t worry about what the kids will think. They’ll grow up knowing what a loving couple should be like. When leaving the house for work, always remember to kiss each other good-bye and when you get home, kiss each other hello.
I know it’s cliche, but don’t go to bed angry. If you’re annoyed with each other, talk it out. We can’t agree with each other all the time, but we can agree to disagree. We are only human and as such, we’re imperfect creatures. When two people live together, they’re bound to piss each other off every now and then!
Surprise each other with little love notes or cards or small, inexpensive gifts. Treat your spouse to a bubble bath and put on something sexy. Above all, always remember to say “I love you” to each other at least once a day. Use your imagination! If you keep your spouse happy at home he (or she because we all know that wives cheat too) will not want to look elsewhere for affection.