Shape up or ship out

So I turned 35 last year and life had been pretty easy going up until then, husbands, kids, job… But something just hit me during the summer that I wasn’t really happy with my lot. After 6 months of soul searching, I decided to take control and make some changes.

First, starting with the husband. We have been married for 10 years and after the kids came along, life just seemed to be a constant struggle where we were like passing ships in each others lives. Everything seemed to be a great big rush, from getting out of the house in the mornings to putting the kids to bed and collapsing exhausted in front of the TV.

Just before Christmas I decided we needed to sit down and have a ‘serious’ chat about the future and I laid it out on the line. The kids were sent for a sleepover at nans (thank heavens for nans and sleepovers) and while he thought he was going out with the lads, what he actually got was an ultimatum: Shape up or ship out. I had finally had enough of his going out with his mates, getting home late and feeling like we were housemates instead of a couple.

Like a  typical man, he played dumb as if he had no idea what I was talking about and tried to persuade me we had the perfect marriage. However I wore him down the only way I wife can- by pulling out my credit card and threatening to treat myself to some expensive goodies online if he didn’t start taking me seriously. That always gets his attention.

It took a few weeks for the message to sink in that I was serious about ending things. Some people seem to think that once you have kids, you’ll stay together forever regardless of the state of the relationship. And to be fair, this is what we had done for years. But once he accepted that I was right (which he always does in the end), he has finally started to give me some attention. It’s a two way street so I have also been making an effort to tone down the nagging too (as much as I can, it is in a woman’s DNA).

To give us time to work on our relationship, we have made the ultimate sacrifice to ban mindless TV watching every evening.  That has probably been the biggest struggle as I am still laughing at those ‘Friends’ episodes from 10 years ago like I am watching them for the first time but it has been worth it. We have actually started having conversations. We are both talking to each other and listening to each other and life doesn’t seem as stressful anymore.  Lets just hope we make it out of the honeymoon period.

“Be with someone who always wants to know how your day was.”



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