What exactly does “back burner” mean?
Well this “back burner phrase is very popular in the therapy room, usually carrying quite a negative connotation with it. Couples struggling with their marital relationships, due to both internal and external stressors, readily admit to placing their romance “on the back burner”. This usually occurs shortly after children are born and when they are infants and toddlers.
This makes perfect sense given how adorable and dependent children are, not to mention all the adjustments and change that occurs once children are part of the equation. These stress factors are likely why close to a third of couples who separate do so during the first five years of having children.
Parental responsibilities added to work, extended family and social obligations can leave much less time and energy for romantic efforts. Dating may dwindle as evenings are spent bathing, story-telling and singing lullabies. Even time to just sit and chat with each other becomes more difficult to find.
Weekend opportunities are sacrificed for extra laundering, feedings, special food preparation and for simply special moments holding “little bundles of joy”. It becomes very easy to look at each other and agree, perhaps without even a word, to put the marital needs “on the back burner”.
This is, however, very dangerous. Children benefit most from parents who are happy, work together and stay together creating a healthy and satisfying relationship. No, this type of relationship does not come naturally. Just because it wasn’t taught in school doesn’t mean training and hard work aren’t required for excellence in marriage. There are many resources to help, ranging from marriage counselling, coaching, seminars and retreats to books, videos and good internet site materials.
We at Jeff Packer MSW & Associates Inc. have developed a seminar called “The Seven Spheres of Intimacy” that helps couples examine their current functioning across the spheres and develop priorities for enhancing marital intimacy. Our trained counsellors in Oshawa work with couples throughout the Durham Region and world wide through internet on-line video-based counselling sessions.
For a consultation, assessment and to schedule your initial meeting Contact us today !