According to national studies, the majority of America’s employees believe they don’t have enough time with their children, their spouses or for themselves. Yet each year, Americans spend more time working.[i]

How about you? Are you and your family having a hard time finding the right balance? Has life become so hectic that it just seems like you see your spouse coming and going? Do you have any real family time anymore? Not to mention alone time with your mate! If you’re struggling to balance work, family, and all the other activities in your life – you’re not alone. Listen to this:

  • In 2004, 81% of respondents in a Work/Life Survey reported unhappiness with their work/life balance.
  • In June 2006, 80% of married couples in the U.S. were dual income earners.
  • 40% of employees work overtime or bring work home with them at least once a week.
  • 88% of employees say they have a hard time juggling work and life.[ii] 

Research shows that marriage takes a hit when you have kids.  According to an analysis of 90 studies involving 31,000 married people, the drop in marital satisfaction after the first baby’s birth is a staggering 42% larger among the current generation of parents than their predecessors.  Satisfaction dips even lower – though only slightly – with each successive child.  Studies also suggest that one-third to one-half of new-parent couples experience as much marital distress as couples already in therapy for marital difficulties.[iii]

One of the major components of strengthening your marriage team is to make sure you spend enough time together.  Now, we know that many of you already are coming up with a list of excuses as to why you can’t find the time to spend with each other.  We’re here to tell you—you can.  Healthy couples do not find the time to be together, they make time to be together.  You may have convinced yourself that you simply don’t have enough time to schedule each other into your day, but that’s not accurate.  You have the time to do whatever you want to do.  And if you don’t spend the time with your spouse, you will fill the time with something less important.

Parents need private time to continue to feel as though they are not only parents but also partners.  If you are always pushing your spouse aside for time with the kids, time to finish that last load of laundry, or time to check on the progress of that work project from home – you may want to consider what you’re teaching your children.  By the way you treat your spouse, are you modeling for your children how you hope they will treat their future spouses?  Probably not.  Spending time with your spouse not only draws the two of you closer together, but it also teaches your children that marriage has to be our number one human relationship.