Like any partnership you get into a groove of what I do and what you do. However, once pregnancy takes over or the newborn arrives or the toddler is on the move things get a bit different. We’re often so busy putting out those bushfires aka teething baby or tantrum toddler or sleep deprived small person, that we neglect to renegotiate those chore arrangements.
So we’re not checking our diaries and making that important meeting with our partner to renegotiate the chores are we?
So how do we get their help? Just ASK right? Noooo actually!
An article in Psychology Today implied that focusing just on communication can make things worse. It seems copying a script found in a magazine, social media, even by a therapist sounds well…unnatural…it just may not sound like you. So that leads the other person to feel manipulated.
You need to sound like YOU when communicating your needs.
But just like cake is so much better with icing, communication is
better with CONNECTION.
I like Dr Gary Chapman’s well-known idea of The 5 Love Languages. These simple ways of speaking or giving to your partner (or anyone) really builds those connections.
You can even take a quick quiz to work out what yours is. Doing the quiz is a great connector for a start!
My top one is Quality Time and I value this WAY above receiving gifts! Spending time with my partner and children fills my bucket. My husband’s is Words of Affirmation. He beams with praise and knowing he’s loved (don’t we all) but more importantly doing a great job.
The 5 Love Languages that path the way for renegotiating help are >
WORDS OF AFFIRMATION – hearing that you’ve done a great job or I love you can speak louder than actions
ACTS OF SERVICE – “let me help you” actions, taking the responsibility off the person & taking over
RECEIVING GIFTS – Not the materialistic focus but more about love, thoughtfulness & effort into gift receiving
QUALITY TIME – Focus, undivided attention, switch off moments together, just being with one another
PHYSICAL TOUCH – Not ‘get in the bedroom’ type of touch but thoughtful, ‘I’m there’ touch, hugs, holding hands, embracing with excitement
Knowing yours brings awareness to your relationships.
And on a happy note....
The question of “What chores does your partner help with whilst pregnant?” in a recent Australian baby forum post generated nearly 200 responses with the majority of men actually stepping up and helping. Mainly with picking things off the floor (we pregnant ones can’t reach!) and cooking (we pregnant ones hate smells!).
So the good news we are helping each other (cue high five).