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Children, Parenting and Expectations

1. In one sentence, say what having your own child would mean to you (or means to you).

I literally can’t answer this? They mean everything to me.

2. Describe how having children would affect your marriage (or has affected your marriage).

From my POV it has completely changed our priorities as a couple. Most of my time is spent worrying or thinking about my kids, and that’s probably truer of Kate. I always want my marriage to be an equal partnership, and I fear that my job or our gender roles result in my wife being forced into doing most of the work and it bothers me to think that things are unfair. I also go out a lot less now than I did when we were first married. Most of that is my own desire to be home when I don’t have to work, but I also don’t want to leave Kate to look after the kids when it’s possible for me to lend a hand too.

3. What do you think your 5 best assets as a parent are / would be:

I am…

  1. loving and affectionate
  2. their biggest fan and cheerleader
  3. determined so they’ll learn never to give up
  4. laid back, so I won’t control them, and they can learn to be their own people
  5. obsessed with their mother and committed to making sure our relationship is a healthy one

4. What do you think your spouse’s 5 best assets as a parent are / would be:

  1. She cares about them deeply and always puts them first
  2. Patience
  3. Dependability
  4. Determination
  5. She treats them like super interesting people in miniature, not babies.

5. What do you think your several liabilities as a parent are / would be:

  1. Being too lax and letting them do whatever they want.
  2. Being away too often.
  3. Spoiling them for being away too often.
  4. Contributing to a conflict-ridden environment.
  5. Not being a good role model when it comes to helping them resolve conflicts in their own lives, whether they are internal or external.

6. What do you think your spouse’s several liabilities as a parent are / would be:

I can’t really think of any besides not taking enough time for herself and possibly becoming jaded as a result.

7. What changes do you want to make from the way in which your own parents raised you?

I want to have healthy discussions when conflict/the need to discipline them arises. I don’t ever want my personal feelings to affect them negatively, e.g., by entirely dropping out of their lives emotionally for weeks at a time because I am feeling anxious or depressed. I always want to be on their side and make them feel proud of themselves and what they achieve, rather than punishing them if they ever fall short.

8. How do you imagine your parents will be towards their grandchildren?

I think they’re great with them.

9. How will you invite / restrict your parents with your children?

I’d never want to restrict their time with their grandchildren, even though the idea of them acting similarly as grandparents as they did as parents makes me feel nervous and protective over my children.