My Husband Treats Our Son and Daughter Differently

My husband loves to wrestle with our twins, but he treats them so differently when they play rough. He’s very gentle with our daughter and much more physical with our son. I guess I’m wondering about two things: Is there any reason to be more gentle with girls than boys, and is there any chance that a lot of wrestling could make our son violent?

With all the talk about youth violence these days, parents are constantly on the lookout for anything that might be responsible for the problem. One common theory is the one you raise, that physical play and roughhousing-which is something dads spend a lot of time doing-teaches kids to be violent. The evidence, however, supports the exact opposite conclusion:
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Getting Back in Touch with Your Husband

I’m a stay-at-home mom and ever since our baby was born, it seems like my husband and I are growing apart from each other. We hardly even talk anymore. We used to be great at communication, talking to each other about our days, discussing our child and what she is learning. We used to do things as a couple. But now I’m afraid our relationship isn’t as strong as it used to be. What happened?

When you first get married, spending time and doing things with your husband is a great pleasure. The two of you are developing ever-tighter bonds as you share and explore new experiences together.

But after a couple of kids come along it’s easy to lose track of what brought the two of you together in the first place. All of your focus is on the children and there’s often not a lot of time left for each other. If you’re like most parents of young children, it may take you a few minutes (and a few guesses) to remember the last time you and your husband went out to dinner and a movie alone.
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My Husband Feels Rejected by Our Child

My husband and I have a 4-year old son and a 22-month-old daughter. I am a stay-at-home mom, but my husband is a very involved father. The problem is that both kids have been in a long stretch of “Mommy do it.” It’s terrible to see how my husband’s face falls as night after night the kids scream “mommy, mommy” as he tries to put them to bed or read them a story. Is there anything I can do to help the kids get past this stage?

The dynamic you’re describing is very, very common–and very, very painful to the non-preferred parent. In this kind of situation, your husband may be tempted to back off as a way of avoiding the hurt. Don’t let him.
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Balancing Being a Step Mom and a New Mom

I’m a new mom—and the step-mother of a 6-year old from my husband’s previous marriage. I try to pay as much attention to my step-daughter as I can, but the minute I turn to my newborn son, she runs off in a fit.  I don’t want to hurt my step-daughter’s feelings, but I want to feel free to enjoy my baby as well. What can I do?

Dealing with a stepchild’s jealousy may seem like it should be the same as dealing with any jealous older sibling, but there are other issues–particularly if the child doesn’t live in your house all the time. In cases like that, the stepchild may feel very upset that the new baby gets to be with you and daddy all the time while she can see her dad only part of the time. She may also be worried that her dad won’t love her as much as the new baby. After all, people are always fussing and cooing over infants and tend to ignore bigger kids.
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I Want a Baby but My Husband Doesn’t

I am 32 and have the worst case of “I-want-a-baby-syndrome.” The problem is that my husband is nowhere near ready. I cry sometimes when I visit my friends with children and I have to leave. Please help so I don’t drive my husband looney, pestering him and trying to convince him to have a child now!

The place to start is to gently figure out why your husband isn’t ready. He may be feeling insecure about his job, about your relationship, about money issues (being able to support the family if you’re off work), the political situation, the economy, the environment, or something else. Once you get an idea of the cause, you can help him overcome his fears by offering solutions that ease his concerns-but do it in a supportive way. Putting pressure on him or giving ultimatums is the wrong way to go.

Husband Is Having Trouble Adjusting to New Fatherhood

I’m three months pregnant and my husband is having a terrible time adjusting. He says that I’ve ruined his life and that he’s scared of the future. I’m afraid we’ll end up getting a divorce and I’ll be a single mom. I need some advice!

I wish there were an easy answer for this. The fact is that some men take longer than others to warm up to the idea of being new dads. From your description’ it sounds as though your pregnancy wasn’t planned. That can sometimes make things worse from the guy’s perspective.
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