Relationship Survival Guide for New Parents
Relationships After Having a BabyHave you had a friend tell you, "your life will never be the same" once you've announced your expecting? Or maybe, something along the lines of, "enjoy it now, because you won't be able to [fill in the blank] once baby arrives."
We’ll never understand why people feel compelled to utter unhelpful cliches upon announcing that you’re pregnant. Why not share tips on keeping your relationship intact – thriving even – while everything else feels new and overwhelming? Here’s what helped us (and will hopefully help you).
Call On Help
A baby nurse the first few weeks (or months) can make one of life’s biggest transition immensely easier. It’s expensive, but an investment that’s worth looking into if you can swing it.
The Answer Is Yes!
If a baby nurse is not in the cards, take family and friends up on their offers to help. An extra set of hands for an hour means you can take a shower in peace. Even better if you can schedule ahead and make the best use of your “free time”.
Don’t be a martyr; let your partner help. You both need to bond with the baby, and being in the trenches together is what it’s all about.
It Doesn’t Count
Ignore anything your partner says between 1am and 5am – all bets are off at those hours!
Best Laid Plans
Use a shared calendar. 1) You’ll know where the other is in case of an emergency. 2) It cuts down on tedious scheduling texts. 3) Date night!
Don’t Alienate Yourself
There are some things your partner won’t get like other moms will. As awkward as it sounds, show up to meetups for moms with babies the same age as yours (find them through local Facebook groups, your pediatrician, or via friends). They’re going to be your lifeline.
Good Night, Sleep Tight
If you are going to sleep train, do it as soon as your doctor says your baby is ready. If that fails, call in a sleep consultant. Sleep deprivation makes a small tiff feel like a huge issue. If you can survive sleep training together (and you will), you can make it through anything.
Divide & Conquer
Split up household duties, so you’re each responsible for specific chores like food shopping, laundry, restocking necessities, paying bills, buying diapers, etc. You don’t want to be arguing at 3am about who was supposed to buy more toilet paper.
The remaining tips are doable once your babe is sleeping through the night.
Easy Like Sunday (Or Saturday) Morning
One person sleeps in Saturday morning, the other Sunday. Pick your day and make it “you time” to sleep, read, exercise, etc. while your partner tends to the baby. And refrain from sending check in texts – they’re doing just fine without you. Swear.
A Night Off
Each of you should claim a night of your own during the week where the other does daycare pick-up (or relieves nanny) and is free to work late, exercise, see a friend for dinner, or – gasp! – all three. Having a specific night lets you plan ahead.
Plan a weekend away before your baby turns 1. Have someone you trust watch your child, and go remember why you liked each other enough to have a baby in the first place.
Get a hotel room – sleeping in together for one glorious morning can do wonders for your relationship.
Join The Babysitters Club
Have a regular sitter for date night either weekly or bi-weekly. Then it just becomes routine to have time together. Whether you go for a fancy night out or on a Target run in sweats is totally your call.