Marriage After Baby: 6 Solutions to Common Problems
Advice for new parents on coping with changing relationships, both as a couple and with friends and family, plus what to do if you're a victim of domestic abuse. Here are five steps couples can take to nurture their relationship while adjusting to their new lives as parents. 5. Hard work and couples therapy saved Jancee's relationship with her husband after her daughter was born Credit: Dan Callister . Or try something new together: neuroscientists have found that novelty activates the Andrew Strauss' wife dies at 46 after battle with lung cancer · Britain to become 'true.
Working on your relationship pays off in spades. Without all that energy expended read: Here's advice from experts as well as couples in the trenches on why this transition is so hard and what you can do to smooth things out. Chore Overload The issue: Domestic duties double, and so does your bickering.
Of course, before there was a baby, there was still laundry. And dishes, and other loathsome household tasks. But there were never so many things that had to be done so quickly.
You can't procrastinate about chores once you have an infant. Well, I did that, so you do this. One strategy to decrease infighting: Post a list of daily chores on the fridge and switch responsibilities each week. Everyone will know what he or she needs to do.
So if you think that you're always doing 90 percent of everything, you probably are. Just remember, so is your spouse. But men often respond better to direct requests. I know it might not seem fair because you may never get thanks, but this will make your husband more receptive to future requests.
And niceties breed a less combative atmosphere. Moreover, it might be catching! Parenting Styles The issue: Your parenting styles cancel each other out. It's nice to think you'd share child-rearing philosophies, but it's often hard to predict how you'll feel about sleep, food, and discipline until you're smack in the middle of your fourth night up with baby.
This is not the ideal time to discover that while you favor a sleep-training method that lets your child cry, your spouse really can't deal with tears for any amount of time. You may also find that your parenting styles clash as you reach for the pacifier at the first sign of distress softie while your partner says no sternly when the baby starts to drum with spoons on the high-chair tray toughie.
My friends Tina and Tim Anson discovered that they differed on just about everything when it came to the baby. And he lets naps happen anywhere, anytime, too. I'd come home to see Jake sleeping in the middle of a circle of toys on the living room floor at dinnertime! Ditto for scheduled naps.
Parenting Styles Explained What worked for them was letting the other deal with the consequences of his or her method. When Tim had to stay up with Jake until all hours on a night when the baby took a 5 p. Similarly, the day Tina attempted unsuccessfully to play with Jake at his play stations while also doing some housework, she realized that having the baby play in the laundry room may be a small price to pay for actually getting the clothes washed.
On more serious issues, such as sleeping or feeding, there are ways to compromise, too.
- How not to hate your husband after having kids
- 10 things you and your spouse will definitely fight about in your baby's first year
- Saving Your Marriage After Baby: 6 Solutions to Common Problems
For certain things—such as when to start solids—you need to follow set guidelines. Talk to your pediatrician about what's recommended. For issues such as sleep i. Then discuss what's best to do. I know one mother, for instance, who actually slept at a friend's house for a week while her husband sleep-trained their 8-month-old son. After reading about the Ferber method, she agreed it was a good idea, but she still didn't want to listen to her son cry.
Your Sex Life The issue: You have sex half as often, and it's twice the hassle. Of course you're in love, you're just not in the mood for getting naked under the covers.
Step one, says Lindquist, is to get in the mood. And the best way is to plan time for having sex. Sure, people joke about making dates for sex, but "remember, when you were dating, you did plan when you were going to have sex. You got ready for a night out and thought about it beforehand.
8 Shocking Ways Marriage Changes After Baby
Get a sitter, shave your legs, and flirt a little. As for increasing the frequency of sex on nondate nights, experienced parents recommend making sure your bedroom is baby-free at bedtime. Couple Time The issue: Couple time is now family time. You're always together, but no longer alone.
Whether you've been a couple for years or just met and wanted to have a baby quickly, jumping from a twosome to a family is challenging.
10 things you and your spouse will definitely fight about in your baby's first year
After Caleb was born, they missed those free-form days. Her side "I was home with Caleb for three months. Some days all I did was take care of him. I envied my friends' freedom, and I took my frustration out on Brett. I'd snipe, 'No, you watch TV while I change his diaper.
If Brett played poker with friends on Friday night, I'd tell him that he owed me time on Saturday to get out of the house.
Your pregnancy and baby guide
I missed being able to just talk to Ashley, let alone surprise her with a weekend trip to the beach. Date nights didn't happen, since we don't live near family and weren't comfortable having a stranger watch our son.
The lack of quality time took its toll. Both of you require "me" time to reenergize you as individuals and "we" time to keep you close as a couple. So speak up when you need a break, and arrange an hour or two for your partner to watch the baby while you hit the mall or do whatever makes you feel human again. If you're wary of using a sitter or paying for oneset up a babysitting co-op with pals or trade off with the couple next door.
An Rx for marriage monotony: Go on out-of-the-ordinary dates -- like a concert or hike -- as often as you can, rather than heading out for ho-hum dinners every week. You'll start to associate your relationship with fun again. And book together time at home as well to keep from drifting apart once Baby is asleep. At least once a week, they take turns watching Caleb for a few hours so the other can meet friends for dinner or just read a book.
A regular sitter still isn't an option, but they go out for dinner or a movie when their parents visit, about once a month. They also have a sofa date at 8 P.
How not to hate your husband after having kids
Pinterest "We fought over our finances. Money wasn't a huge issue until their expenses shot up after Sonya was born.
Although Ashley wanted to quit working, the couple needed two paychecks to make ends meet. She changed nursing jobs twice in one year, taking salary cuts in exchange for more flexible hours, but continued to spend money freely.
Joshua grew concerned about having a cushion for the future. Her side "Growing up, I never had to save for something I wanted.
I didn't learn the value of that.
But I never ran up debt, and Joshua and I always paid our bills on time. Once we became parents, though, Joshua thought I spent too much on the baby.
He questioned every nickel I spent, and I felt like he was trying to control me. I nagged Ashley to cut back because we didn't have an emergency fund, which was even more important now that we had a daughter depending on us. Sonya needed clothes, but not every time Ashley went to the mall.
And don't get me started on the little things, like coffee, that really add up! Discuss your spending and saving habits and your long-term goals, Gordon-Rabinowitz advises. Review six months of expenses to see exactly where your money goes, and then add in the costs for baby must-haves. If you're not sure how to estimate that, sign up for the free, ten-day Baby on Board Bootcamp at LearnVest. Crunch the numbers to see if you can still achieve your goals based on your income and spending tendencies.
Then set a budget -- excluding your salary if you plan to stay home -- so you can adjust to living on less even before you become a family.