Guest Blog: How to Maintain a Resilient Relationship After Having a Baby
Hey guys- while I am on vacation in beautiful Pittsburgh, PA- I am sharing a great guest blog for you guys to check out. Relationships after baby is born can be really difficult to keep up with. My guest blogger, Emily Graham from Mighty Moms shares her tips on how to keep things going smoothly after baby arrives!
Hope y’all enjoy! See ya next week!
It’s not uncommon for couples to face a few relationship issues after the birth of a baby. The exhaustion, worry, and frustration that accompany parenthood can really put a strain on a relationship, no matter how well-prepared a couple may be for this life-changing event. With that in mind, here’s how to overcome your exhaustion and find time to connect with your partner as you adapt to your new role as a parent.
Schedule Date Nights
After having a baby, what used to be "couple time" is now "family time." While it may be hard to find a single spare moment in your day, it’s important to carve out special time for you and your partner. Schedule date nights so you can reconnect intimately, show your appreciation, communicate free from distractions, and restore some sense of familiarity to your lives. Try to secure childcare every couple of weeks so you can both enjoy a night out together. If you can’t leave the house, plan your date around your baby’s sleep schedule and opt for a relaxing night in — order takeout, watch a movie, or try out a new hobby together; if this sounds like your cup of tea, take a look at these new parent date ideas from Kindred Bravely.
Even if you don’t have the time for a date with your partner, capitalize on those small moments you have together. Share a compliment, express your gratitude, steal a kiss, offer up a quick massage, or take a moment to tell your partner how much you appreciate them. According to Psych Central, those small, meaningful gestures go a long way to display your love and support.
Communicating openly is important in any relationship, and it’s absolutely crucial when a baby comes along. If you feel like you’re bearing all the weight of the childcare and household duties, resentment can build up quickly. Not only that, but it’s common for parents to clash on their childrearing opinions, leading to tension and conflict. To ensure you both feel like you are heard and understood, make an effort to talk with your partner openly. Tell them how you’re feeling and avoid blaming, pointing fingers, or making accusations. Although your emotions may rightfully be running high, it’s important to stay calm and collected during your discussions so you can arrive at effective solutions for your problems.
Create a Chore List
Of course, having a baby significantly increases the volume of chores that need to be done around the home. BabyCenter recommends creating a chore list so both you and your partner feel like the household tasks are split evenly. To start, note down the tasks that both you and your partner do in one week. Then, take a look at the list together and talk about responsibilities that should be reassigned or swapped based on your mutual agreement. This chore planning strategy is also a great exercise in communication and showing appreciation.
Remember, you and your partner are a parenting team. If you’re facing certain problems that are causing stress on your relationship, get together and draft up solutions. For example, you may find relief from financial stress by talking to a financial advisor and creating a household budget — these tips from Forbes can further help you alleviate parental financial stress. If it’s exhaustion and sleep-deprivation that’s getting to you, consider setting up a system for alternating nights with your partner. To resolve problems with parenting concerns and clashing parenting styles, consider taking a parenting class together.
Having a baby is an exhilarating life event that no one is ever completely prepared for. No matter how strong your relationship was before you had a baby, you and your partner are bound to butt heads at least a few times. Keep your relationship strong and resilient by acknowledging your partner’s feelings, making time for each other, and problem-solving as a team.
"Successful Mothers are not the ones that have never struggled. They are the ones that never give up, despite the struggles." - Sharon Jaynes