You are currently going through what is recognised as the most stressful stage of marriage. Two young children are hard work for both of you and most relationships get tested at this time. A second child does not double the workload, it does far more than that! But if you can find a way to ride this storm, you will return to the fairly good marriage of earlier. It really does get easier. But it’s going to require patience and endurance, with a commitment to see this through for better or worse. Divorce is not an easy way out.
Your wife has become lost in a sea of young motherhood. Doubts can creep in for both of you as to whether you are any good as parents and this may be causing your wife to have lost sight of what is ‘good enough’ and where to draw the line. She needs your wisdom, encouragement and firmness. I suggest you take into your own hands the important matter of getting time alone together. My husband and I have always had a weekly ‘date night’ throughout our marriage and this has been invaluable. This by definition is purely ‘a deux’ and needs to have some effort put into it in terms of romance and communication time. Organise a babysitter and, an hour or so before you go out, take over child duties from your wife so that she can either sleep or pamper herself in preparation. Also remember to do things together as a family that are not entirely child focused: they can fit in with you and they soon will if they become used to it.
It sounds like tiredness is a big factor for your wife. Could you look at getting her some extra support maybe once a week to get some rest? Recognise too that there is also a psychological challenge for women at this stage of life in seeing themselves as ‘lover’ not just ‘mother’. A woman’s libido is hugely psychologically fired. When the sexual parts of your body have been the stage for giving birth and breast feeding, it can be hard to switch to feeling alive sexually again. Keep nurturing and encouraging your wife’s femininity, helping her to gradually get back in touch with this part of herself. But do be patient as life has its natural cycles.
Although sharing your struggles with your wife has not led to tangible results as yet, do continue to talk things through together. Remember why you got together in the first place, what you liked and loved about each other, and then try and rekindle that. Remember that you married each other and not your children. Being good parents is of course really important, but a major part of being good parents is to model love and security to your kids through your own relationship. Why not also book into a marriage enrichment course that will enable you to reflect on what to prioritise. It often helps to bring an objective voice into the marriage, saving you from having to say it all.
There is hope! Your marriage will get easier and more rewarding as the demands of your young children integrate into your adult lives together. Continue to get involved as much as you can with family life and work together to achieve the balance of relationships together you all need. It’s one of the hardest challenges of life, but it is possible.