Q My husband and I are rowing more than ever in the last two months. Money has gotten very tight and neither of us knows how we'll get things financially back on track if this virus ever goes away. With all the stress we are fighting lots, and I'm worried about the effect on the kids. Our eldest is just seven.
A Finding some route out of your financial crisis might help to take the pressure off you both, giving you a bit more space to be able to address your relationship. Have you considered contacting the Money Advice and Budgeting Service (MABS)? MABS is a government service, and they have a helpline that is continuing even during the Covid-19 emergency; mabs.ie is their website.
Parental conflict can be very difficult for children to witness. As much as possible, then, try to restrict your discussions about money, or other points of stress in your relationship to night times when they will be asleep.
Disagreement and even rowing are normal parts of a relationship. However, it is helpful for children to see that their parents can reach some resolution, even if only a temporary one. Children do need to know that a row has finished and that stability has resumed.
Try to avoid blame in your discussions with your husband. The more you can focus on describing your feelings, and he describing his, the easier your communication will be. Couples counselling, if you can access it, may also help.