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"My husband and I have recently gone through a rough patch but I've been getting counseling for myself. My therapist asked me this question and I honestly don't know how to answer it. I do have me time. But with my kids being younger it's always about them. My husband wants us time. We've made more of an effort to spend more time together, it's just not enough for him. How do I continue my life with trying to be everywhere and still make time for him and myself. How do I define myself outside of being a mom & wife."
TOP ANSWERS (AS SELECTED BY MODERATOR):
The following top answers have been selected by a moderator from hundreds of responses to the original question.
"Start “small”…are you someone who likes to read books? If you could read something by any author, which author would you choose? Do you like music? If so, what kind? Who is your favorite singer? Once you discover/rediscover your likes you start to define who you are. It’s hard for moms cuz our identity blends in with being a mom. Are there religious beliefs that you feel are important? If so, those beliefs are part of your identity and who you are. Do you have a hobby? Like crocheting, knitting, sewing, needlepoint? Your hobbies are part of your identity. Set aside time each day or three times a week just for you and only you to spend 20 minutes on a hobby or something that YOU like. Let yourself enjoy it. Hubby and you like to go out for dinner? Go do that every Friday or Saturday and he needs to be patient and grateful for that time with you and not behave like your best wasn’t enough for him. Maybe a family night once or twice a week where you and him hang together with the kids."
"Your ‘you’ is evolving. Right now you are in Mom/wife phase. This is ok, embrace it. Dad needs to embrace his dad phase too. You both need to make peace with the fact that time for each other may look different for the next few years for eg. Watching Disney movies snuggled on the couch and family restaurants instead of fancy bistros etc. Stop trying to define everything or over-analyzing and just go with the flow for a while. Be true to yourself in the process i.e. maintain your hobbies or interests, friendships and special date nights as much as possible and where you can (without killing yourself). As kiddos grow and need you less you will regain more independence from these all-engulfing parental roles and will evolve again. You’re not losing yourself, you’re growing."
"It’s important to be your own person. Who is that person? What do you like? Think back to before husband and kids. This isn’t about me time. Have you always liked the music choices of boyfriends for example? I always think the movie Runaway Bride explains this really well."
"Tell hubby that if he wants more couple time with you her has to help more with the house and littles."
"That means, are you kind? Artistic? Hobbies? Do some for YOU! You time isn’t always just pampering yourself in quietness Occasionally, it’s not alone time grocery shopping, car ride on the way to do what has/needs to be done for your kids/husband. It means do you like to read? GO to a movie? Dinner with a friend? Painting class? Sew? Sing? It means you need to do things you enjoy IF you didn’t have kids or a husband. No, I’m not telling you to act as you don’t or not make them priorities, they are. I am saying a couple hours a week… do YOU! Obviously, not cheating/drugs/alcoholic."
"Hobbies, part time job. Husband needs date nights weekly or bi weekly. My identity was teacher. I was lost for a long time after retirement. Now another career and my hobbies"
"Why should you define yourself as a title ? ( define yourself as ’ job description ') When I was a wife, a mother , took of all household responsibility, and held a full time job, I was still me. We lived miles away from family. I wasn’t defined by any of them, I’ve been happy within myself , my capabilities and even though there were times of frustration and tiredness, I was me. A person, defined by my name, my gender and date of birth."
"First, you and your husband will benefit from reading the 5 languages of love. Second, how do I define myself outside of wife and mom? I’m creative. I’m a business owner. I’m an animal lover. I’m an empath. I have a strong interest in social justice. I’m an advocate for those less fortunate. I’m a collector of lost souls"
"I will tell you what has made such a huge difference in my marriage. I know not everyone has parents who can, but my husband’s parents get the kids nearly every Friday night, and that time is set aside for me and my husband. During the busy week we look forward to spending that time together on Friday night. Our marriage is really the best it’s ever been!"
"Tell him to make time for you. You don’t have to initiate all the time. Tell him to come up with things for you to do, or plan out dinner."
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