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One question we get all the time is, “How do I use SMART Contact if I have kids?”
If you and your spouse have a family, the thought of going days or weeks without talking to your spouse is more than painful- it’s scary! You’re not just thinking about you- you’re also thinking about your children…
“How is it going to affect them if they don’t hear from their mom or their dad for an extended period of time?”
Because children are involved, we want to help you implement SMART Contact in the best way.
Currently, there are two main ideas surfacing of how to reach out to your spouse when separated.
First, there’s “Constant contact.” I.e. contacting your spouse EVERY. SINGLE. DAY. thinking it will “bring them back.” Here’s what we know- it will not. Annoyance pushes them away.)
The other school of thought that is very popular is “No Contact.” i.e. ignoring your spouse for a period of time. This does not work. (Why would you ignore your spouse if they are trying to reach out to you? It’s the very thing you want!)
With the hundreds of thousands of people we reach, we’ve found what actually works: SMART Contact. *For an in-depth video detailing each aspect of SMART Contact, watch this video first: “Save Your Marriage While Separated: Do This!” https://youtu.be/5Rb1CIgt37I
SMART Contact is a lot easier with kids, because you always have a reason to reach out to your spouse. However, ONLY reach out to your spouse about things that are relevant; things that your spouse needs to know. (And, don’t put high expectations on these conversations.)
We know this is so difficult, and we can’t fully go into all the SMART Contact details, but that’s why we created the SMART Contact Toolkit. Check it out here: https://marriagehelper.com/smart-contact-toolkit/
Here’s a more clear cut example of SMART Contact with kids:
Last week Kimberly’s daughter got accepted into a special school she applied for. However, a couple of months ago Kimberly and her husband ALREADY paid registration fees for a different school.
With this situation, if Kimberly and her husband were separated, this would be the perfect situation to reach out to him; implementing SMART Contact. And, not “pushing” him to do anything about the situation, not talking to him about their relationship, not vilifying him. No, in this case, Kimberly would simply explain the facts, and ask for input of what he thinks is best for their child. If he isn’t interested, she won’t push it. She’ll simply thank him for talking about it and include him in relevant information/situations in the future.
Lastly, PLEASE remember to NOT use your kids as a way to get your spouse to do something you want them to do. Do NOT bring your kids into the middle of your marriage problems, and talk badly about your spouse.
Here’s what we covered today. First, reach out to your spouse about items that relate to your children. Second, don’t set expectations. Third, don’t put your kids in the middle of any drama. All in all, SMART Contact sets up a solid foundation for your spouse to feel more comfortable opening up in the future.
*SMART Contact™ is a registered trademark of Marriage Helper.