Updated: Feb 28, 2021
Hey there, it's Christie Sears Thompson.
Today, I’m writing to you about the 3 toxic myths about being a parent that all parents MUST break away from in order to achieve a better relationship.
Getting your mindset right is the #1 thing you have to conquer if you want to succeed in not only parenting, but having a healthy relationship. As the popular saying goes, "You are your worst enemy and best asset".
From serving many clients from all walks of life over the last 11 years, I can tell you that the best and most successful ones are those with the right mindset and attitude.
It's myth-busters time, my friend! Time to realign your perspectives and make things right! :-)
Myth #1: “My child needs me more than my partner does.”
Yes, of course your child needs you. They can’t physically take care of themselves - especially as babies. So it would make sense that you need to spend a lot of time and attention caring for them.
However, the misconception that your partner is fine without much care and attention from you does a lot of damage to the health of your relationship over time. The sad truth is many partners tend to put their significant others secondary and pour much more energy into their kids creating disconnection and dissatisfaction between them as a couple. If months and even years pass, resentment can start to grow.
The mindset shift to make here is that your partner needs your love, affection, and attention as much as they ever did before you had kids together. Making room for your child in your heart does not eliminate the space your partner already has. So continue to nurture your Partnerhood by tending to their needs as well.
Myth #2: “I need to do all the things.”
This is SO not true.
We have been conditioned to believe that we can keep a clean house 24/7, make home-cooked, healthy, organic meals every day, (not to mention that our kids will eat what we’ve prepared), and that being a homemaker comes easily. Add on that we can help our kids with remote learning, raise our babies, work from home, and still have enough energy at the end of the day to feel sexy and ready for some intimate alone time with our partners.
Excuse me while I laugh hysterically.
I know we live in a Pinterest and Instagram world of comparison and mom guilt can be a real pain in the a$$, but if you take a good look at some of those social media posts, you’ll find these are the highlight reels and there is probably a mess of unfolded laundry from two weeks ago blurred into the background of that portrait-mode snapshot.
The truth is there is only so much time in one day and so much bandwidth that you have throughout it to handle whatever comes your way. Prioritize what are absolute must-dos, and if anything else gets done after that, you get bonus points! Plus, if you and your partner communicate about your to-do list(s), you could probably tag team with each other and not feel so alone or put so much pressure on yourself to get things done.
I have personally had to do this myself as a “recovering perfectionist”, so I know that you can too!
Myth #3: “There is no sex after kids.”
I can totally understand why someone would believe in this as I’ve been there myself, but I have seen time and again that it’s about prioritizing what is important to your relationship.
Sex can be more challenging after kids for many reasons, that’s for sure. The body changes drastically during pregnancy and postpartum, hormones are all out of whack, and timing can be a huge roadblock with a child in your home. Exhaustion can contribute to lack of energy for pretty much anything, especially being sexual.
But if it’s important to you and your partner, you can make it work. Sometimes, embracing a quickie or having scheduled sex might be the route you have to take. It all comes down to communication with each other and putting energy into your relationship.
Why is believing in these myths problematic?
Because believing in these 3 myths will stop you from having the Partnerhood your desire. Your relationship suffers, you feel overwhelmed and dissatisfied, and you don’t create the family you dream of as a result.
As someone who does relationship coaching and therapy for a living, I have seen breakthrough after breakthrough and I know that is not complicated to achieve a healthy Partnerhood, people just don't have the right guidance to succeed.
Many people search for information online fruitlessly, and when that doesn't work, they give up. I don’t want you to give up because I know you can do this. Your family is worth it!
How else are there tons of happy families if it was so hard? Are they are all geniuses? No... they did it by seeking guidance and through pure hard work!
So take heart. You can do this! Don't for a second doubt yourself and DON’T feed into the myths I revealed to you today.
That's all I have for you for now. See you next week! I will be writing to you about my relationship with my partner and telling you how we’ve kept things going for 16 years.
Till then, take care!
Christie Sears Thompson
Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist
The Partnerhood (www.thepartnerhood.com)
Trade Winds Therapy & Relationship Coaching (www.tradewindstherapy.com)