Sports media is full of jokes and advice about post-kids relationship dynamics. For example, the algorithms have fed me more than one video of mothers who complain that their child is very difficult because their mother-in-law gave birth (AKA their wife). Although most of these videos are for fun, it is worth exploring if it can damage the relationship when someone starts treating his partner as a child.
It’s easy to see how relationships can begin to slip in this dynamic. After children, parenting becomes a priority and maintaining our relationship moves down the to-do list. So to learn more about getting out of parenting style, we looked beyond social media and turned to some experts; two partners of Manhattan Wellness, a popular psychotherapy practice in New York. Jennifer Silvershein Teplin, founder and clinical director, and Elizabeth Marks, relationship therapist, share how and why to leave a father.
Jennifer Silvershein Teplin
Jennifer is the founder and CEO of Manhattan Wellness. She strives to support women by working with individuals, families, groups, and couples.
Elizabeth is a therapist at Manhattan Wellness who empowers her clients through individual and group sessions.
What does ‘parent to partner’ mean?
Although all relationships are different and each one has its own unique responsibilities, without proper and frequent communication, roles and responsibilities can slip away. From Marks’ point of view, he saw this imbalance when a person performs normal duties and holds the responsibility of fulfilling the needs of others. A co-worker can have parental responsibility as all household chores fall on that person’s shoulders.
Comparisons can be made for many reasons, as Teplin points out;
- Sometimes a partner may want to ‘control’ and therefore repeat tasks and complete them in a way that they think is ‘correct.’
- Sometimes a partner is happy to be taken care of or unaware of all that their partner does for them and the family. He called this the ‘invisible act’ of a colleague who was not recognized or appreciated by others.
Effects of partner care
“A parent is a guide, a supporter and an inspiration,” says Marks. “When you enter into a relationship, there are some aspects of these actions, but between two equals – not the parent and the child.”
In the parent/child dynamic, the child must come before the parent. Teplin has shown that, at first, this idea is better suited to the role of ‘caretaker’. When this happens regularly, however, until the ‘honeymoon phase’ of the relationship, the constant giving and receiving can be overwhelming. As life becomes more difficult by adding real children, things like a mortgage and so on, stress grows and often turns to anger, Teplin explained.
Not only does the dynamic of the parent/child relationship put pressure on the person in the ‘caring’ role, it can have serious consequences for the person being supported. Teplin explains that when this person is constantly doing other things for them, it can lead them to feel like they can’t complete tasks. This can translate into apathy, and lead them to continue to avoid responsibilities.
Perhaps the best results of caring for a partner are seen in the emotional and loving aspects of the relationship. “A romantic relationship differs from a platonic or familial relationship based on passion, intimacy, connection and intimacy,” says Marks. “When parenting is kept in a loving environment, it’s easy to let your partner down, get angry, and often become angry at work.”
Should we parent our partner?
So, is there a time and place to adopt a partner? Marks and Teplin agree that while there are times when we need to show more emotional and physical support to our partners, this should always be done as a team, not a parent.
Teplin offers a solution, “If you feel like you’re falling short of ‘parenting skills’ ask yourself how supportive you are before you act and focus on encouraging your partner to do the same. .”
Mark touched on the importance of remembering that our partners are like us, not our children. In their time of need, we can provide support, advice, and a listening ear without parenting them by telling them what to do or stepping in immediately. in ‘fix it’ mode. This shows that we are going for them to trust, but we believe that they can make the best decisions for themselves.
How to leave a father
It is for the benefit of our relationship that we treat parents only for children, and treat our partners like parents, and act like the partner we hope to have. According to Marks and Teplin, communication is at the center. Each of them provides effective ways to communicate with our colleagues so that we can make a joint effort that is beneficial and enjoyable.
Find out what your unspoken feelings are – then talk about solutions
Teplin explained that when we start to give up the tasks on our table, our task is to talk with our partners about what we are seeing. In order to do this, we need to be aware of our own thoughts and be open to sharing them to create long-term results. He explained, “Thinking and being aware of unspoken behaviors and feelings will allow you to re-establish agreements with your partner and meet your mutual needs..”
Marks explained the same – we need to first think about the characteristics that we are falling into that make us unhappy, and then bring them to our partner. When we are not satisfied with the current perceptions of ourselves and our partners, we must be open to discussing a solution.
Marks is expected to work normally with peers. When we plan engagement, we open the door to discuss how to be better partners and avoid falling back on our originals.
The first step, he explains, is communicating our needs and welcoming our partner’s needs when they choose to share them. “What makes you feel loved, respected and wanted by your partner changes but the role of ‘partner’ and equality remains,” says Marks. He explains that by sharing our needs, speaking up when a problem arises, and leading by example with respect and understanding we can consistency rather than falling into a parenting pattern with our peers.