Now the boys are both nearly in double digits, I was hopeful things would get easier as they got older. However they both seem to have started to hit the terrible teens early! Persevering through the endless rages and grumps, we are still attempting to ensure we spend quality family time together. A popular option seems to be to let children have free rein with screens or play out for hours on end. As we are quite rural, letting the boys play out usually means one of us will have to stay back in town until they are ready to come home.
So how can you improve your family time?
It might sound wrong but to ensure everyone enjoys time spent together (especially between siblings of a close age). It is really important they everyone has space to be able to go to for a break. For the boys we ensure they have reading time to do this, not only does it improve their literacy skills but it calms them down. Very useful before bed or in the day if everyone needs breather.
Sharing the same hobbies in the family can provide a good foundation for building relationships on. For us we love playing board games and now the boys are older they are able to handle much more complex games. This now proves to be quite a challenge especially if they decide to team up against us! Having a set time and day to play helps with their routine and nips arguments in the bud. We also enjoy getting out and about on adventures, going for long but adventurous walks (sometimes I even pretend to be a dungeon master!). This last option really tires them out so they have less argument in them.
It can be daunting to try new things, however if you try them as a family you can encourage each other. For example we recently went to Florida and the boy wanted to do high ropes. So as a family we ascended together taking the nerves out of our fear for heights! I must admit I am also a reluctant traveller however since having children they have really spurned me on to travel anywhere in the world! We like discovering new places together.
If your relationship breaks down
As a family you always want the best for your children, but you have to be careful if your relationship starts to suffer. Parenting is hard and you will not always see eye to eye when raising your children. It is important you set aside time for yourself. However if you relationship does breakdown it is important you get advice from prime lawyers who are specialists in family law. Attempting to keep a relationship going for the sake of the children can prove to be worse than splitting up. Eventually it might grind you down.
Hopefully things would not come to that and you can work out a way for all the family to enjoy time together!