How to Help Your Relationship Survive a New Baby

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We’re going to talk MARRIAGE here today! Here’s a scenario:

You fell in love, you got married, and then you decide it’s time to grow your family. You find out you’re pregnant; maybe it takes a while, maybe it happens quickly. The nine pregnancy months are, well, a roller coaster, but you can’t wait to meet your new baby! You give birth, and you fall in love all over again- but this time with a squishy, tiny person. You and the tiny person start to become acquainted with each other: you snuggle; you feed; you change diapers; you cry; you stare in awe; you beg him or her to please, PLEASE sleep; you snuggle some more…….. WAIT!

What? How did you get here?? Who’s that guy lying in bed next to you??? Ohhh yes! It’s your husband! That guy you married, the guy you fell in love with first!

Becoming a new mom is freaky. It’s a wonderful time but it’s also a whirlwind. And depending on the pregnancy/birth, the recovery time after the baby’s born can make a new mom feel like her body will never be “normal” again! (Thankfully, it DOES recover. 🙂 ) A woman with a new baby experiences huge changes in her body and mind, and even in her spirit. Becoming a mother (whether for the first time or for the tenth) is a special, personal experience for a woman; but becoming a mother doesn’t mean that a woman should give up or forget her identity as a woman, wife, friend, etc. The most important relationship a new mom has is with her husband, and here’s why:

-He came into her life before the baby did
-He did half the work in making the baby
-He is her equal partner, her teammate, and she needs him
-Children feel more secure when their parents love and respect each other
-He loved her first and wants her to be happy

So, if you’re a new mommy and you’re wondering why things feel different between you and your spouse:

The “transitional” time- the period of time focused on adjusting to life with a new baby- tends to focus on the baby, and not on your marriage relationship (Pirak, Helping Your Relationship).

This is normal, but there are things you can do to ease the relationship strain and set yourself up for an even more meaningful relationship than ever before!

This shouldn’t be scary. Having and raising a child together is a very special (and some would even say sacred) experience between a husband and wife! You created something remarkable, out of your love for each other. And this new life depends on you both to keep it safe and love it. Life as a couple CAN and SHOULD still be exciting, fun, and happy. How is this possible, when all you can think about is your sweet baby and about how you want your pre-baby body back?

  1. Love yourself/don’t be hard on yourself: Your husband’s confidence is increased when he feels he can make you happy. Accept his compliments. Let him show you that he loves you. Stop being so hard on yourself, because guess what? He sees your body as amazing and beautiful, and you should, too.
  2. Make time for yourself: Let your hubby know that you will be happier and feel more like yourself if you can have some self-care time regularly. Believe me, if he knows that you taking regular time for yourself means that you’ll be happier and that you’ll feel more womanly (*insert Natural Woman song here*) he will INSIST that you take that time. 🙂 )
  3. GO ON DATES: This is extremely important!!! You cannot neglect this part of your relationship. Continue to date each other and, if possible, try to make date night a regular thing. And I’m talking date night WITHOUT KIDS. (It’s understandable that you may have to bring a new baby with you for the first few months though. 🙂 )
  4. Rely on him: Your husband is your best friend, your partner, your lover. Rely on him and remember that you don’t have to do this whole parenting thing alone!

Have fun with your new baby and your growing family, and have fun with your hubby. 🙂

Suggested reading:

Helping Your Relationship Survive a New Baby

And Baby Makes Three: The Six-Step Plan for Preserving Marital Intimacy and Rekindling Romance After Baby Arrives (book by John Gottman)