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  • 5 Steps To Encourage Your Partner To Be A More Involved Parent Without Starting A Fight

    Clear and kind communication is key.
    by Kate Borbon .
5 Steps To Encourage Your Partner To Be A More Involved Parent Without Starting A Fight
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  • Though dads are becoming more involved in parenting, there are still some moms out there who have a hard time asking their partners to be more active parents. This imbalance in parenting loads can cause moms to become overwhelmed and put a strain on their relationships with their spouses.

    If you hope to share parenting responsibilities more fairly with your partner, try these five steps:

    1. Enter the conversation with a clear head.

    Relationship expert Andrew G. Marshall advises parents to talk when both you and your partner are feeling calm; this will help you talk without things getting too heated. Try to make sure that you are not angrytired, or hungry before you start talking. “When we’re activated, we can’t think as clearly and will not be able to think objectively,” clinical psychologist Venus Mahmoodi, Ph.D. tells Romper.

    2. Make your expectations clear.

    Try to avoid making vague comments about how your partner doesn’t do enough as this will probably just lead to arguments. Romper also notes that being unclear can make things worse because it will set your partner up for failure and you for disappointment.

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    Instead, inform him of what exactly you expect him to do. Do you want him to handle more chores at home? Do you want him to spend more time with your kids? Whatever your expectations are, express them clearly.

    3. Set up a system.

    One way to make shared parenting labor work may be to establish a system for you and your partner to follow. You can create a schedule of the tasks each of you needs to finish every day or week or assign each person certain responsibilities, like changing your baby’s diapers or picking up your kids from school. The Center for Parenting Education also suggests regularly setting aside the time to plan out strategies for each week.

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    4. Communicate constantly and kindly.

    Marshall says that communication is the “key to dividing household and childcare duties.” If you make sure to communicate with one another regularly, you can be more transparent about your concerns and how you can solve them together.

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    Make sure to also be kind to and considerate of one another. One way to achieve this is by being mindful of the language you use. Wellness expert Sophie Jaffe suggests expressing your requests in an ‘I’ format: For example, you can say: “I love how you spend quality time with the kids. I’d love if you can do that more so I can also have some time to rest.” This approach helps you focus on your needs instead of what you think he does wrong, she tells Romper.

    5. Trust him.

    You and your partner might not always have the same approach to specific parenting tasks like managing tantrums or giving snacks. Learn to accept that you both do things differently and that’s completely okay. Don’t be too hard on him! The bottom line is that you both are learning; if you just give him time and space, he’ll figure out how best to parent your kids.

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