Wednesday, 18 July 2012

Intentionality Part II

Intentionality – Part I tried to make the point that children are a gift from God, as such they provide a marvelous opportunity to glorify God as well as being uniquely positioned to place a great deal of stress on a marriage.  As parents we have the privilege of helping one of God’s creations to reach their potential, to help them to learn about their Creator, we are to “Teach them (God’s words) to your children, talking about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up” (Deut. 11:19).  We are to use every opportunity as a learning laboratory, whether disciplining or praising our children.

That said there are some discussions you should have before trying to conceive a child such as:

·       What are your expectations about roles, i.e. who gets up at night, who changes the diapers, etc., etc.?  What do you understand and believe about “Attachment Theory”, etc.?

·       To what extent are we comfortable with in-laws involvement?

·       What will be the financial implications on the marriage?  Have we learned to depend on two salaries?  Is the mom to be a “stay at home” mom?  Etc.

·       Can you agree on how the child will be disciplined?  Shared responsibility?  To spank or not to spank…?

·       What will be the impact on your marriage?

 Be very careful as you answer this last question.  Raising a child can be a draining experience.  It is more the norm than the exception that couples stop going out, conversations tend to revolve around the child as well as do most activities.

This is why you need to be very intentional.  You must plan to get out a minimum of one to two nights a month, just the two of you.  If possible, plan one or two get-away weekends without your child per year.  Make arrangements with in-laws or agree to trade off with another couple who has a young child.  Set aside some time each day if possible to talk about something other than your child and household tasks. 

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