After being married for over 12 years, and having a few daughters one thing keeps becoming more and clearer. I have to make myself happy. What makes me say this? I have one of the most high energy, wonderful, and painfully honest husbands. Every so often we just talk about life things and human nature situations and it always leaves me knowing I can only control myself.

Men, women, children, sex, aging, testosterone, cohabitation etc. There are so many layers to living with someone, and creating a happy home that it really has to begin with the individual. I sometimes feel like married women are walking around as the years go by waiting for some shoe to drop. No wonder, if you look around you as couples have been together for a time, and then add the layer of children you can see they begin to drift apart. The mom/wife gets rooted in intense responsibility, and can at times resent the man’s continued ability to stay spontaneous. He wants to be in the middle of the family, but has a hard time finding his place. Not to mention the fact that he does in fact want to have the freedom to come and go as he is so inspired. The woman understands her duty to her family, and will often times just embrace it with grace. However, then the man feels like all she does is Mom stuff and forgets about him and their relationship. Meanwhile, she would love to be alone with him or have unplanned sex, but that doesn’t seem to match into reality. If she bailed her job as Mom her husband would be mortified and wouldn’t respect her anyway.

Is it the chicken or the egg? When do things start to unravel? Does the man stray because he isn’t getting enough love and sex at home? Or is the women shutting down because she feels left behind and trapped by all the domestic duty? Seems like one of the most common themes in marriage.  Believe me I don’t know of any real solution, except that I can keep myself healthy and happy. I am trying my best to make sure everyone in my home is getting what they need, but that also includes my needs.

When Laird comes home at the end of the day, and I have had a full day, he doesn’t see a sour and bitter person. Granted he may see a tired person, but I’m not a hag waiting to pounce on him when he walks through the door. I try to be complimentary of him, and find a way to keep the fresh girl within me alive. I’ll be honest -- the greatest aid in this has been staying very physically active, and finding creative projects to be involved with. Keeping perspective is easier to achieve when you feel good. A man I know told me women are more interesting because they suffer more. At the end of the day, if you want to go the whole family route and don’t want to neuter your husband, then guess what -- there is so much more of a complicated load on the woman. We all make choices, and as long as there is communication, honesty, respect, friendship, and love, I’ll take the gamble of being in a relationship. I’m not going to live waiting for something to go down. I’ll just take things as they come and in the interim try to be a good person, friend, wife, and Mom. Ladies, you have to take care of yourselves. I understand giving up so much to make a lot of other things happen, but not at the expense of your body.

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