I saw this book title while browsing audiobooks today and I couldn’t help but laugh! Hashtag relatable content.
During the pandemic, my husband and I have become roommates. (Okay, let’s be honest, this wasn’t due to the pandemic.) Here’s what our current relationship looks like.
We Do the Parenting Hand Off
We trade parenting shifts. While one works from home, the other parents. The shift change happens and roles are switched until it’s time to put the kids to bed. We are either parenting solo or working solo from 5:30am to 6pm.
Our Conversations Lack Substance
When we do have a few minutes to talk, our conversations seem to be around what’s happening in the moment, the day-to-day and nothing deeper.
- “Did you put in a load of laundry?”
- “Can you book a grooming appointment?”
- “What would you like for supper?”
Last night, we were expressing our dissatisfaction in our relationship and tried to re-kindle some commonalities. Unfortunately, our interests have never seemed to sync with one another, even when we were dating. Yes, we took interest in what each other cared about, but it isn’t something we have maintained because at some point it began to feel superficial.
We both want to make time to talk again – but about what?! (Literally, this is where we’re at.)
A list of book genres at the library helped us identify our common interests. He’s interested in genres like politics, religion and history, and I’m interested in social science, business, and self-help.
Of course, we each have more interests, but unfortunately, only one genre was on both of our lists.
Turns out, we are both interested in… NON-FICTION. That’s it. Of 25 genres, that was the only one that we were both interested in. WTF?! What are we supposed to do with that?!
“Hey honey, let me tell you about this… thing that happened once…”
Like, current events or inner-work can spark so many beautiful discussions, but non-fiction?! Uuuuggghhhh…
Suffice to say, our pockets of connection during the day feel surface-level and lacking. Let’s move onto the evening.
We Isolate in the Evenings
After the kids are in bed, we are tired of what I’m sure is only a sliver of what solo parenting is really like. So, we both look to fill our own cups with what interests us. Take some time for our mental health. We read, work on projects, watch and scroll. Apart.
He likes being in his office where his computer is and I like crawling into my bed where all of my belongings are.
At Least We Sleep Together?
Nope! Not even that! We’re at a parenting stage where our children really need us at night. While we aim to sleep in the same bed together ALL night eventually again, we go to bed at different times and as soon as one child needs us, we’re into separate beds for the rest of the night.
Rinse and repeat, 5 days a week.
Weekends Seem Different, But No Better
You would think weekends would be better for us, hey? Somehow, they don’t feel that way.
I realize we’re in a weird time with social distancing requirements and few outings. We get together with our families which is amazing and beautiful but isn’t doing much for our relationship as husband and wife.
The weekends seem to be spent catching up on whatever is needed. The house, the mess, the kids, the laundry, doing what we individually need and want to do.
So, What Do We Have in Common?
Commitment. The reason we fell in love was that our family values are so similar. We are committed to one another. We believe in trying really, really hard when things are really, really hard.
We have our family values identified and framed on our family room wall. Family, Kindness, Playfulness, Respect, Simplicity.
We have two beautiful boys together and we love each other.
We have a lifetime ahead of us if we’re willing to work for it. And we are.
We’re Going to Work
We agreed to working through a marriage course together. Not his cup of tea, but I recognize his willingness to work. Actually taking the steps to become vulnerable is not my cup of tea, but that is the work I’m putting in.
We’ll get it back. We will.