Relationships – Keeping Your Relationship Alive While Caring For a Physically Handicapped Child

Relationships can be difficult under the best of circumstances. Let us face it, few people find a partner that they never disagree with or feel frustrated with. Add in the daily irritations of work, finances, and the required tasks of keeping a household running and the stress can be overwhelming.
But that stress can be multiplied many times over if in addition to those frustrations you are caring for a physically handicapped child. These children are very unique and special. Because of the special care we provide for them we naturally develop a deep and growing love for these loving children.
Even so the required work involved in providing the special care and attention for physically handicapped children can result in a depletion of our time, energy, and in some cases, even our resources. Unfortunately a side-effect of this can be a lack of attention to the marital relationship.
In fact, in some families one partner or the other can even become jealous of the attention lavished on the child. If you wonder why the reason is simple; as the spouse gives so much of himself or herself in the care of the child little is left over for the spouse.
Obviously this is a recipe for disaster. If a relationship is to grow and improve over time it requires work and attention. Although it is true that much attention must be spent on the child, it is vitally important that the relationship is not neglected.
If you are in such a situation, there are ways to make time for your relationship and to care for your child appropriately. One suggestion is that you find a friend or relative that is trustworthy and that understands the unique care your child requires. Ask that person to assist you by simply watching your child for a few hours periodically.
Even if you can only get away long enough to go out for a nice meal, just the two of you, it will allow you to focus all of your attention on each other. Plan ahead and agree that your discussions will not focus on your child but instead this will be your get away time.
If you do not have anyone that you trust leaving your child with, then you and your spouse will need to be more creative. Perhaps you can plan at least one or two nights a week that you restructure your schedule. This might require staying up later than usual or getting up earlier than you normally do.
If your child attends school or daycare then try to plan to have lunch together whenever possible. It is imperative that both partners provide care for the child. That means the chores should be shared.

Simply being partners in the special care will provide a bonding effect. However, it may be wise to spilt the tasks as you share them in order to give each other a break. This is entirely up to you and your spouse. The point is that you should find a way to use this as an opportunity to strengthen your relationship rather than weaken it.

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