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A Wife and two kids how to mix in Golf


112 replies to this topic

#1 Mario Good Times

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Posted 01 April 2018 - 08:41 PM

So I have a 3 year old and a 6 year old and a wife of 9 years.  We are having a problem with how much golf I can play.  I totally understand her side of the argument that when I’m out golfing she is watching our kids, so I golf and come straight home I stay local, I make it a early round to try to be back at a good time and still enjoy the day.    I’m a great father and supporting husband but I don’t really have another person to compare my golf with to someone else with something close to my situation.  I love the game, but it’s bringing my relationship to a tipping point.  How much does everyone golf with 2 young kids with out causing a divorce.  I don’t want to abuse my free time but I also feel like I’ve earned a little freedom to do my passion.  Besides golf I’m all work, Daddy and husband ...


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#2 mantan

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Posted 01 April 2018 - 08:55 PM

It's the phase of life that a lot of us have been through. Your kids are going to grow up really fast. Enjoy them now when they are young.  As they get older maybe they'll get into the game, if not  - still enjoy their passion and just realize your golf time will slip a bit. (BTW, if you thnk you're busy now - wait until sports, activities, eat up every weekend!)

I was in your shoes awhile back. Now my kids are older (college and HS) and suddenly I have nothing but golf time.

Edited by mantan, 01 April 2018 - 08:56 PM.

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#3 raynorfan1

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Posted 01 April 2018 - 08:57 PM

Figure out how to have golf eat work hours instead of leisure hours.

Play with clients; play with vendors; burn extra vacation days. It’s far easier for me to duck out of the office after lunch and play 18 holes than to get 4+ hours to myself on a Saturday afternoon.

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#4 Maton12

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Posted 01 April 2018 - 09:13 PM

Work out the priorities in your life, if your wife says it's too much, ask yourself if it is too much as she needs a break from the kids too

You haven't told us how often you golf or how much time your wife gets just to herself - I'll bet you golf more...

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#5 Llortamaisey

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Posted 01 April 2018 - 09:13 PM

The first step is get a vasectomy. Second step is get a post-nup. Third step is play more golf.


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#6 md1m

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Posted 01 April 2018 - 09:19 PM

So do your kids have no interest in golf? I have a 7 and 5 year old. My 7 year old has been in the golf academy at our course for 2 years. They have a group lesson up to twice a week. While he's doing his lesson I can fit in some putting, chipping, and driving range time, and when they're done they let us go out and play as much as we want. I get to spend time with him, my wife only has to watch one of them (I'd take both but 5 year old isn't interested yet), and I get to play. Also play in a league on Fridays (when I'm able) while she is at work. And they love mini golf so have season pass and take them both to play mini golf often while wife has alone time.

So I get enough golf time, spend time with kids, and wife is happy. In fact, she encourages me to play golf because the way I'm doing it rarely if ever takes away from family time. You may not be able to replicate what I do but if you can do anything close I'd give it a try. Have never once had a fight or discussion about golf being a problem.
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#7 ohioglfr

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Posted 01 April 2018 - 09:20 PM

Your kids are in formative development . . .  

When something goes wrong during the formative years, that has an effect on how the person grows and develops later during adolescence and adult life. Most time lines consider the first five years the formative years, and during this time social skills and basic motor functions are learned and practiced. Learning to walk, talk and use the bathroom are some key examples of these formative skills.

In addition, personality is greatly impacted by these years. Many basic likes and dislikes, such as arts and sports, have their beginnings in this period. Emotional development also starts in the formative years. It is important to focus on encouraging a child's intellectual and thinking abilities during these years, as it can have a significant impact on them later in life. It is difficult to make up for a lack of this encouragement at an older age because by the end of the formative years so many basic building blocks are set in stone. For example, a child who does not learn to speak early enough will have difficulty learning later on.


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#8 blink3665

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Posted 01 April 2018 - 09:25 PM

I've been married for 12 years.  My kids just turned 7 and 3.  I started golfing late.  I actually started when my wife and first born would nap while I was on paternity leave.  Since my wife was not used to me golfing before marriage it was a rude surprise about how much time it took.  There was a lot of resentment on her part with the amount of time I spent on the course.  We had a good discussion about it.  Communication is going to be key.

Now I play on the weekends about once a month.  She goes out to happy hours, dinners, or whatever a few times month.  We try to balance the amount of time that we are out of the house while the kids are awake.  

As someone else mentioned... I have figured out how to play golf when no one will miss me.  I play 3 times a week (minimum) during the summer during the week.  How you may ask?  I tee off at my local course about 10 minutes before sunrise.  I play the first 2 holes with minimum light.  I get done with a full 18 before work.  I don't get the commraderie of playing with my buddies, but I do get my golf fix.

Edited by blink3665, 01 April 2018 - 09:27 PM.

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#9 MadGolfer76

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Posted 01 April 2018 - 09:25 PM

"Watching the kids" doesn't take all that much strain if done well, and doesn't have to result in the TV taking over the parenting either. Never understood that as a complaint, but there are plenty of things I don't get about 21st century life either.

Sounds like the wife wants a break from time to time. Take turns.
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#10 Dr.Frankenputz

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Posted 01 April 2018 - 09:26 PM

Whenever she asks me to watch the kids so she can do something I try to always say yes. I also try to encourage her to do as much stuff without the kids as possible.


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#11 farmer

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Posted 01 April 2018 - 09:34 PM

Do as much of the routine stuff as you can.  Laundry, grocery shopping, cleaning, cooking, carry as much of the load as you can.  You're still going to be limited, but your wife may be happier.

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#12 Fairways_and_Greens

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Posted 01 April 2018 - 09:55 PM

I have a wife and two kids almost the same age. I play league in Tuesday and during the summer I play one day in weekends, but I'm typically playing by 6:00am. I have a net at home.
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#13 Canoe Paddler

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Posted 01 April 2018 - 10:10 PM

I'm in a similar situation as you. For me a few helpful things have been:

- more 9 hole rounds
- occasionally taking my boys (7 & 3) with me, which is a different kind of fun
- planning 18 hole rounds in advance and getting a sitter so my wife can get out during that same time. That way we both get a break
- Taking single vacation days and playing 36 holes

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#14 jslane57

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Posted 01 April 2018 - 11:00 PM

Golf can be a very selfish game and every situation is different. Maybe it is time. Maybe it is money. Does it even matter? I quit golf during those years. Not because I wanted to avoid a fight, but because I hated playing poorly when not practicing or practicing like I needed to. I can't tell you how many of my kid's friend's parents got divorced when middle school and high school came around due to the stresses of kids and such, there were many.  Try not to make decisions that you'll regret when it comes to the humans in your life, at the end of the day, golf is just a game...
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#15 fairways4life

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Posted 02 April 2018 - 06:50 AM

OP, how much golf are you playing?

And do you ever take both kids and free up your wife to go out by herself?

I have a wife and a young one at home. I try to plan each weekend to allow for a window of time that I can play. I belong to a private club about 10 minutes away. I don't spend time warming up before the round. Straight to the tee, about a 3 to 3.5 hour round and straight back home. Total investment is 4 hours tops.

The rest of the weekend involves house work and encouraging my wife to get out and do something while I stay home with the little one. That way she gets her time and I get my time. Marriage -- and parenting -- is a compromise.

Personally, I'll agree to disagree with those who say to just quit the game entirely until the kids are grown. Between work and parenting and maintaining a household, I believe it's healthy for adults (men and women alike) to have something in their life that is for them. It's a way to reset and recharge and releive some stress. It's an outlet. Keeping all that stress bottled up isn't healthy. Whether it's golf or softball or music or painting or whatever, I feel like it's important to have something in your life that is just for you.

The key is to make sure that both partners have that opportunity so it takes sacrifice on each person's end to make it happen.



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#16 cwglum

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Posted 02 April 2018 - 07:31 AM

OP, hopefully your wife has social outlets that she can setup for herself to get some time away as well.  Encourage her to do so.

If she does not, than it will be tough.

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#17 nellycuz

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Posted 02 April 2018 - 07:40 AM

View PostDr.Frankenputz, on 01 April 2018 - 09:26 PM, said:

Whenever she asks me to watch the kids so she can do something I try to always say yes. I also try to encourage her to do as much stuff without the kids as possible.

THis is my key. Always try to say yes.  I like to encourage my wife to go do things on my day off, especially in the winter months when I can't golf.  I have a 1.5 yr old and another one on the way.  Trying to get my 1.5 year old putting in the house and watching golf, she seems to have some interest already.  Then when she's 5 or so, i can take her to play 9 holes and see how it goes.  I've also found myself playing 9 holes more often and closer to the house.  2 hours one evening as opposed to 5.5 hours on a weekend round with the buddies is wayyy more doable.  We will see how this goes when 2 are in play but I'll figure it out.
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#18 wkndhack

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Posted 02 April 2018 - 07:52 AM

I have two, 5 and 3. I play in a 9 hole league on Wednesdays and get home only an hour later than I normally would. I play 9 holes first thing Saturday morning with her dad, and her mom helps her with the kids. As for getting 18s in, I just try to work around her schedule. I always take my clubs on work trips, or if she is taking the kids on a play date and hanging out with her mom group friends, stuff like that.

I do have to encourage her to do stuff for herself as well, though she is getting better at that.

My older one shows a little interest, I'm hoping she takes it up, it would be cool to have golf and time with her at the same time.
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#19 Under2hours

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Posted 02 April 2018 - 07:55 AM

So far so good on this thread......  Usually there are a few who will tell you that the spouse is wrong and it is all about you & golf.  They'll explain getting your kids to golf and how you can still play 54/wk, go on golf holidays and that the spouse should be happy that you aren't spending the time/money drinking & carousing.

I tried to get the kids & spouse to play golf (failed).  I thought at worst a 10 yo riding and driving a cart would at least keep them interested on a trip.

Very simply outside work invites from the time they were born to 10 years old I played 5-6X's a year.  

You work 9-5 so there is your window if you can intersperse golf with work.  On the weekends or before work maybe first off @ 6:00 and don't dawdle.....  There & back.  Vacations with other families you can leave for a few hours.

BTW the ages of your kids are the best for the next 6 years when they love you unconditionally and are not teens yet........

My kids are grown and I just got back from vacation with my spouse.  A week with a course next door and very inexpensive in the pm.  I didn't see the resort really advertise it and regardless the idea to leave my spouse for 4+ hours to play just does not sit right.  Yes in retrospect would have loved & could have swung two rounds (weather still terrible here), but my spouse means more then golf.

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#20 SnakeP.

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Posted 02 April 2018 - 08:13 AM

It's kind of tough to give advice on how much golf you play when you don't tell us how much golf you play.


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#21 bigmoneyp

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Posted 02 April 2018 - 08:24 AM

Its not just about playing golf and then making sure the wife gets time out without the kids.  Its also about you making her feel important to you.  How often do you take your wife out on a date night (no kids)?

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#22 dpb5031

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Posted 02 April 2018 - 08:26 AM

When my kids were that age they would wake up early every day. The wife and I both worked, and she enjoyed the opportunity to sleep-in a bit on the weekends if possible.

So, my routine became waking early with the kids, getting them fed and then washed/dressed as well as the house straightened up.  At around 9 a.m. she'd wake up and we'd enjoy coffee for about an hour then I'd pass them off to her so I could head to the club for a 10:30 tee time.

She would head over to the club's pool at around 2:30 pm and I'd meet them there after my round.  I'd swim with the kids while she relaxed by the pool and then we'd either eat an early dinner at the club, go home and cook on the grill, or maybe just grab a pizza.  By 7:30-8 the kids were wiped out and ready for bed and we'd have some alone time.

This arrangement was much better for us than the typical 7 a.m. dew-sweeper deal where I'd be gone before she awoke, and it worked for us for many years (been married 26 years).  Belonging to a club with a nice pool and social environment helped.  I should also add that I missed plenty of weekend golf days as the kids got heavily involved in sports of their own, but I enjoyed most of that as much as my own golf, so it never felt like a sacrifice. One just got engaged and is graduating college with honors, the other is on her first year playing D1 golf on a full ride.

Bottom line is there are ways to work things out if you communicate well, respect each other's feelings & perspectives, and are willing to give a little to get a little.

BTW, everytime one of these threads pops up you get the Captain Obvious self-righteous lectures: "you need to get your priorities straight, your kids are only young once,their development, happiness, and well-being will be compromised if you don't stay home and dote on them 24/7."  Well meaning I'm sure, but c'mon, the guy wants to play a little golf, he's not hanging at a strip club or seedy casino all day.  It can be done!
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#23 JDFish

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Posted 02 April 2018 - 09:32 AM

I didn't play much golf while my kids were very young.  When they got to your kids' ages I was fortunate in that they both had dance classes all Saturday morning (both have been involved in competitive dance for years now).  That allowed me to play without guilt :)  And, the more dance classes they took, the later they got home, which allowed me to extend the golf morning to lunch and a few beers or/and an emergency 9.  I was also lucky that both my girls had an interest in golf (my older daughter quit playing after her Freshman year of high school, my younger daughter is still playing and got her varsity letter as a Freshman last year and plans on playing her Sophomore year) which also allowed me to get out and practice with them and play 9 holes (with the bonus of promised ice cream or breakfast afterward).

I should add that my father-in-law told my wife before we married that there are two things she can't mess with - my golf and drinking.  So I had that going for me, which is nice.  I don't think I've abused my privilege much - we've been married almost 26 years.

Edited by JDFish, 02 April 2018 - 09:46 AM.

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#24 swizbeatz

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Posted 02 April 2018 - 09:38 AM

Definitely hoping OP pops back in and at least throws out there what he hopes to play or how much he plays now.  Iím extremely glad Iím with someone who loves golf as well, itís never really been an issue for me.
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#25 nix

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Posted 02 April 2018 - 10:05 AM

Everybody needs time for themselves. With a family you have to work to make sure you establish time for yourself without impacting the time that others need of you. What that is for each is dependent on the individual situation.


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#26 Ferguson

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Posted 02 April 2018 - 10:16 AM

Post Breakdown
By: Ferg



So I have a 3 year old and a 6 year old and a wife of 9 years.
Congrats.   The best thing in life is being a parent.


We are having a problem with how much golf I can play.
You have the problem.  Don't make golf the the problem.  Golf is a sport not a part of your family.


I totally understand her side of the argument that when I’m out golfing she is watching our kids.......................  
You don’t understand her and you are attempting to rationalize your behavior.


I’m a great father and supporting husband but I don’t really have another person to compare my golf with to someone else with something close to my situation.  
Who said you are a great father?  Your oldest is 6.  You are just getting started.  Don't pat yourself on the back just yet.
Greatness will be measured about 25 years from now.   Kids don't give a rat's a$$ about greatness - they want their dad to be around.  And why do you need a comparison - will it make YOU feel better?    


I love the game, but it’s bringing my relationship to a tipping point.  
You are taking golf to the tipping point by making your ability or inability to play an issue.


I also feel like I’ve earned a little freedom to do my passion.  
Your passion?    You sound self-centered.  

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#27 pearsonified

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Posted 02 April 2018 - 10:17 AM

I think this is an intractable situation. A woman who is hardwired for this sort of resentment is going to make your life a living hell from now til the end of time.

Some women aren't like this; in my experience, they are an extreme minority, but they are indeed out there.

I see a lot of resentful moms these days, and it's a sad situation. Modern society tends to blame the men and thereby provide some sort of justification for the woman's resentment, and this drives a wedge (heh) between partners. I really think it's a disaster.

I'm sure I'll get lambasted for this because it's the "modern world" and all, but...

I think women should cherish the incredibly difficult role of child-rearing, and the best women aren't going to complain about one bit of it.

I don't complain about my work or the incredible BS that comes along with it; my role is to provide for my family and ensure my child has an environment where she can thrive. Nothing else matters. Resentment of any sort is not going to help me fulfill my role and provide for my family.

If either partner complains about his/her role in the relationship or child-rearing picture, then the whole thing is doomed.
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#28 fawley

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Posted 02 April 2018 - 10:18 AM

I have a 5 year old daughter and a 7 year old son.  I lived in New York City until my son was 4, and my golf was pretty limited.  Playing public golf while living in Manhattan isn't a quick or easy affair, and it meant leaving my wife with the kids for the best part of a day every time I played.  I played maybe one weekend a month (if that) when we were home for the weekend.  

When visiting my in-laws a couple of hours away, my wife and I usually could get out for a round together while her parents watched the children for us.  That was also about once per month.  I also had maybe another once or twice per month during the summer where I could either take a vacation day or leave work early to play, or have a work related event I could play in.  On top of those things, there were usually 2 or 3 rounds of golf if we were on vacation somewhere that made it practical to play, and I usually got to the range one night per week.

So all in, I probably averaged a round per week and a range session per week during the golf season, although it wasn't the traditional play-with-the-same-foursome-every-week way to do it.

When my son was 4, we moved out of the city to the burbs (about 20 miles north of Manhattan).  Things got much, much easier.  We joined a private club less than 10 minutes form the house.  I could get out early and be done around the time my wife and kids were arriving at the club to hang out at the pool.  I generally swim and hang out with the kids, and give my wife some time to herself, we have lunch together, and then swim some more.  My wife might go out and play 9 holes with her friends, or I might take my son or daughter out to play a few holes.  I also play after work a couple of times per week during the summer - sometimes alone, sometimes with my wife while we have a sitter for the kids, and sometimes with my son and / or daughter.  It has been a huge positive in terms of access to golf, and also socially given that we didn't know a lot of people in the area before we moved there.

As the kids are getting a little older, their weekend sports schedules are getting more demanding, and that is somewhat limiting my flexibility as to exactly when I play (I'm at all of both kids' games as much as I possibly can be).  It's just making things slightly less convenient - I'm still getting to play, just not necessarily when I'd ideally like to.

The other thing I do to make things easier for my golf and skiing habits (you think golf takes a lot of time - try skiing when you live 2 hours from any decent vertical, 4 hours from any mountain you really like to ski, and a plane ride from any mountain you really love to ski) is to encourage my wife in her own independent activities, and to try to never say no if she needs me to take care of the kids while she goes to a fitness class, or dinner with her friends, or goes away for a weekend with the girls etc.  Selfishly, it's helpful to me in that it makes her more likely to reciprocate when I ask her to do the same for me, but way more important than that, it is giving us both time to ourselves to continue to be our own people with our own interests and personalities.  We're lucky in that we (and our kids) have largely similar interests, but everyone needs some "me" time every now and then.

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#29 Hit 'Em Straight

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Posted 02 April 2018 - 10:47 AM

Teeing off at dawn a couple days a week for 9 holes before work is key for me.

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#30 jmudo

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Posted 02 April 2018 - 11:10 AM

To answer your question, I golf maybe 27-36 holes a week. Any more than that and I feel like Iím missing out. Heck I donít even really enjoy playing twighlight because I miss out on dinner and bed time. The only time my golf becomes an issue is if Iím not around and my wife canít partake in her activities (running, dinner with friends, manicures). Full disclosure we both work full time so she isnít dealing with kids all week while Iím working.

Good luck to you and I hope you two can reach some common ground.


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