Relationship Issues: Should You Hold Off on Having Kids?

January 8, 2012 by

One of the relationship issues most couples face at some point in their marriage is deciding the right time to have children. And in this current economic climate, more people are deciding to hold off. Just how many? The U.S. birth rate is at an 11-year low. Money is a huge concern. Couples worry that they can’t afford to buy a big enough home or child care, and they may be uncertain whether they can give their children the quality of life they deserve.

But of course, finances aren’t the only concerns that stop couples from expanding their family. Ongoing marriage problems can keep couples from being ready to take the next big step, too.

Address Relationship Issues before Having a Baby

From my work in Portland marriage counseling, I can tell you that marriage problems don’t get any easier to deal with once children enter the picture. Some couples believe that having a child together will somehow fix things by strengthening the bond they have, but this is not often the case. Of course, a new baby is wonderful and can make you feel more connected to your spouse, but it’s also another responsibility which leaves you less time to focus on the health of your relationship. If you think it’s hard to find time for date night now, wait until you’re changing diapers and coddling a crying infant.

A new baby puts additional stress on your relationship, and you want to make sure that both of you are ready to handle it together. If you’re considering having a child or expecting a baby, one of the best things you can do to prepare for parenthood is to focus on improving your relationship skills. If you need help talking through relationship issues, I encourage you to seek Portland marriage counseling.