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Don't Forget to Lock the Door

Aug 5, 2008
Kelli Glass is in transition from stay-at-home to work-at-home mom. She is a transplanted Texan and lives in California with her husband and two boys.

Before kids (BK), you had time for yourself and for your husband: quiet evenings at home, discussing politics or the latest movie over a bottle of wine, or dinner and dancing at your favorite restaurant. I'm talking about romance, spending hours in bed on a Sunday morning reading the paper and sharing some special "alone time anytime" with your husband. Remember those days?

After kids (AK), you're working all day in an office or in the home or both. You are queen of multi-tasking: folding laundry while you're on a conference call, helping with homework while you check email, driving the kids to and from their activities while quizzing them on spelling words, cleaning the bathroom while bathing your children. You get the picture. And at the end of the day, what do you really want to do? The kids are asleep in bed, the dishes are washed and put away, email is under control for the moment, the lights are low and for the first time that day, you are alone with your husband. BK: the answer is easy, there isn't even a question. AK: falling asleep on the couch or reading a novel might top the list of things to do with "sleeping with husband" being number five or six.

Does this make you a bad wife? I don't think so. It means you're like most other working moms. The choice of going to bed to sleep rather than sleeping with your husband identifies you as a busy person, with a busy life and very little time to yourself. And that's ok.

Life is exhausting, work is exhausting, keeping a family thriving is exhausting, and maintaining a satisfying and loving relationship with your husband is exhausting. Yet, your life (at home and at work), family and marital relationships are all entwined and equally important. You can't have one without the other.

I believe the key to marital success AK is to find the proper balance between the three - life, family and marriage. One solution is to change your outlook. A date with your husband doesn't have to mean a babysitter and a night on the town. It can be a quiet evening at home, a picnic in the living room after the kids have gone to bed. Employ your best problem-solving techniques. Tell your husband how much it turns you on when he empties the dishwasher or takes out the trash. You'll get the extra help with the housework, and he'll get a thrill knowing his domestic skills excite you. Engage in creative scheduling and meet for a quick lunch at home while the kids are at school. Or, set a date to meet in bed at 10 p.m. one evening. Put the date on your calendar and his calendar, and you'll both have something to look forward to at the end of the day.

If you are successful in your problem-solving and inventive scheduling techniques, then you and your husband will be able to share romantic trysts reminiscent of BK. A word of warning, however: do not let this accomplishment go to your head. You still have children and still need to take the necessary precautions to protect you and your husband's privacy. A good friend of mine and her husband were taking advantage of their creative scheduling early one morning, when they were surprised by their child at the edge of the bed. When asked what they were doing, my friend's husband replied that he and Mommy were "naked wrestling." Fortunately, junior was satisfied with this answer. In fact, he asked if he could join in the fun! Did I mention that a sense of humor was also necessary to maintaining your romantic life AK--that and a good lock on the bedroom door!

As excerpted from "42 Rules for Working Moms," Super Star Press, 2008.
About the Author
Laura Lowell is the executive editor of "42 Rules for Working Moms." In dividing her time between work and family, she came to meet and learn from other working moms. Her book shares the experiences and practical advice of 40 working moms from all over the world. http://www.42rules.com/working_moms/
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