Parenting comes to life in the stories we share.
Whether it’s a moment of joy or a moment of distress, we can learn from each other.
Shay Dipraseuth, Kitchener, ON
Before my wife and I were married, we really enjoyed dating. It was part of how we fell in love. Date night for mom and dad now that we have two children? When is there time for that?!
I love my girls very much. When I say that, I mean my two daughters and my wife. My wife says “I love my kids very much” and she means me as well as our girls.
My oldest is three and my youngest is 16 months old. These past three years have been the most incredible years of my life. They have also been the hardest years I’ve ever had.
When my girls were babies, they needed their mom 24/7. I knew that, but I have to admit, I was a bit jealous. I know they needed their mom, but a part of me was hurting. I missed my wife.
I started to put more effort into work because I thought I wasn’t needed at home. I didn’t realize she was feeling the same way. She missed me, too!
It’s hard to admit that you have let someone down. I’ll admit that I let my wife down though, and that means I let my children down. I should have been there for her more when she needed me with our first. I thought because my wife was with the baby all the time, she didn’t need me. Same for my daughter, I thought she only needed her mom. In reality, we all needed one another.
When we had our second daughter, things changed. While my oldest needed me, my wife was with the new baby, all over again. This time we did things differently. We learned from our mistakes.
My in-laws are amazing people. They watch our girls so that my wife and I can go on dates.
Dating my wife again has made us stronger as a couple. The girls see us laugh and communicate with one another and it makes them laugh. We did a family photo-shoot a few months ago; my wife and I were able to slip away for some photos of just the two of us. Looking at the pictures brings so much joy to my heart. She is so beautiful! We are laughing together (probably laughing at one of my great jokes) and are so happy.
Whenever I need motivation, I look at this picture and realize how much I love her.
When we can’t find sitters available, we like to give the girls some dinner and after they are asleep one of us will run to grab a special meal. We will curl up on the couch and watch something together. Date night doesn’t have to be expensive or mean we have to leave the house. Date night is just acknowledging my partner and letting her know that I appreciate and love her.
To be a good parent, I believe that I also need to be a good partner. My mom told me on my wedding day that I need to treat my wife with respect and that when I have children, they will learn about relationships by watching us. My girls see our relationship every day and I hope they see how much I love and respect their mother.
We will have ups and downs in life, but we won’t give up on one another. If I want my girls to learn what love and respect are, they have to see it first hand with how I treat my wife—their mother.
We will have date nights, not only to keep us strong, but also to keep our family strong.
Shay Dipraseuth is a loving father and husband, who lives in Kitchener. Date night for mom and dad is a priority for him. ♥