Impact of Children on Committed Relationships

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Impact of Children on Committed Relationships
Christina Smith
Everest University Online

Most of the time, children have a great impact on a relationship. Before children, couples usually tend to spend a lot of time together and have more energy and money (Wood, 2010). Once children turn the relationship into a family, couples have less time together along with less energy and money (Wood, 2010). Our communications go from long and stimulating conversations about anything and everything to mostly about the children. We all know that becoming a parent is hard, but until we do, we never realize exactly how hard it really is (Wood, 2010). I interviewed five parents, two of them being a married couple, on how becoming parents impacted their relationships. The rest of this paper focuses on how these parents feel their children have impacted their relationships and how their communication is with each other.

With every family, the impacts of children on a relationship are different. People expect different changes, while other changes are not so expected. My friends, Brad and Morgan, have been married for almost three years. When I asked them what changes they experienced that was least expected they had different answers. Brad told me that his least expected change was that he “went from being someone who has never been around too many children, and not really a ‘kid’ person, to loving and playing with a child and it making you feel so good just to make them smile, and the warmth in your heart when they look at you with their arms open saying ‘Da Da’ (B. Worley, personal communication, January 9, 2012).” Morgan said that her least expected change was that she became a lot more emotional than she was before (personal communication, January 9, 2012). When talking about this, she told me about an experience that she had that made her realize this. She related “I went to a graduation ceremony shortly after my son was born and I cried thinking about HIS graduation! Totally unexpected (M. Worley, personal communication, January 9, 2012).” I asked a few of my other friends the same question. Kristi said, “I would have patience and be confident in what I was doing. I thought I would have a harder time adjusting (K. Madore, personal communication, January 10, 2012),” Michelle told me, “The way my single friends treated me and the baby. They thought that because of the baby I could not do the things I did before and therefore stopped inviting me all together without even giving me a chance (M. Butler, personal communication, January 10, 2012),” and Season answered with, “I never expected that I would be able to go without sleep or that I would have to, but having a child changes your sleep habit dramatically. Before I had children, I could sleep through a tornado. After I had my first child the slightest noise would wake me up! (S. McMahon, personal communication, January 10, 2012).” For some, the least expected changes seemed to have been both positive and negative. The trend I noticed was that most of them had expected the worst and what surprised them was that they were a lot easier than what they believed they were going to be.

My next question to my friends was “How did communication with your partner and others change after the baby was born?” Season told me that communication with others had never been very good, and that having a baby didn’t really make it worse or better (S. McMahon, personal communication, January 10, 2012). “As for my husband, he was actually great. He was a hands-on daddy who would feed, bathe, change diapers, and get up in the middle of the night. It was pretty good. We seemed to communicate much better about the kids. On life in general, it was not so good. People just treat you differently when you have a baby (M. Butler, personal communication, January 10, 2012).” For Kristi, communication with her husband was already almost non-existent. She said that with others, it centered on being about...
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