Claire and Doug were like two ships passing in the night. They were in survival mode as they were newly married and blending families. With five kids between them (two hers, three his), different co-parenting schedules, kids’ activities, and dealing with the exes, Claire and Doug’s marriage heat was kicked to the curb. This was definitely not what they were planning! Yet, it’s all too common in a remarriage and stepfamily.
How about you? Blending families is work. Healthy marriages are work. Are you stuck in an “all work and no play” groove? Time to put the fun back in your love life!
4 tips to help your love life be on F.I.R.E.!
- Flexibility is key. Look at your calendar and schedule your date times. Evening not always good? How about a breakfast or lunch date? Change it up a little. Of course, being spontaneous works too!
- Intentional. Especially when the kids’ schedules are flying all over the place and you hardly see each other—make the times you do see each other count. Be intentional with your words of support, affirmation, and flirting. Keep hellos and goodbyes meaningful.
- Relational. I always ask couples, “Do you want your kids to have the marriage you have?” Sometimes they lose eye contact with me. If your answer would be “no,” don’t worry. It’s never too soon or too late to change things around. Put your marriage before the kids. Let them see you dating and having some PDA (Public Display of Affection), even if it grosses them out!
- Exciting. Try not to get in a rut of doing the same old thing. Maybe trade off planning an outing (or staying in). Let the girlfriend or boyfriend in you come out to play. Remember when you were dating before your blended family adventure? Don’t ever lose those memories. Be playful with each other again.
Claire and Doug got on the same page. They realized it wasn’t the end of the world if they missed watching one of the kids’ games once in a while. They made time for themselves and each other. They were intentional about investing in their team and were more relaxed. The kids even noticed!
Where can you make adjustments in your life to put your relationship first? Be creative. Remember, the kids won’t be under your roof forever. This is just a season! When you feel it’s time to connect, say to each other, “It’s time for some FIRE!”