Congratulations on the birth of your little one! If you’re reading this, you’ve recently stepped into the captivating, yet challenging, journey of parenthood. having a baby changes everything – your sleep schedule, priorities, and yes, your relationship with your partner too. You’re not just partners anymore; you’re now a team raising a tiny human being. It’s an exciting adventure filled with pure joy, but it can also be a rollercoaster ride with many ups and downs. In this blog, you’ll explore some best relationship advice for new parents decoding the secrets of thriving as a couple while embracing your new roles as parents. So, stay tuned. It’s a ride you won’t want to miss!
Relationship Advice For New Parents
With the arrival of your little one, it’s natural to feel a shift in your relationship dynamics. But don’t fret, as this change is an integral part of your growth as a couple and a family. Let’s explore a series of actionable advice that will help you maintain and enhance your relationship amidst the whirlwind of new parenting responsibilities.
Start Scheduling Things
As new parents, it may feel like every minute of the day is filled with baby-related tasks – from feeding and changing diapers, to soothing, and repeating, your days may seem to blend into each other, leaving little room for anything else. This is where scheduling comes into play.
It may sound unromantic, but scheduling time for your relationship can be a game-changer. Here’s how you can approach it:
- Date Nights: Dedicate one night a week as ‘date night’. This doesn’t necessarily mean going out; it could be as simple as enjoying a meal together, watching a movie, or reminiscing about old times once the baby is asleep. The essence is to reconnect as a couple, not just as parents.
- Connect Throughout the Day: Find little moments to connect throughout the day. A sweet text, a quick call, and a warm hug amidst the chaos can go a long way in making your partner feel loved and appreciated.
- Schedule Chores: Distribute the household chores and baby care duties fairly. It can help avoid resentment and create more time for each other.
- Me Time: Remember, it’s important to have individual downtime as well. Schedule ‘me time’ for both of you to indulge in activities you enjoy separately.
Don’t Keep Score!
Stepping into parenthood, especially for the first time, can often feel like running a marathon with no finish line in sight. In the middle of sleep deprivation, endless chores, and the constant needs of a newborn, it’s easy to fall into the trap of keeping score. You might catch yourself thinking, “I changed the last diaper, it’s your turn now,” or, “I was up all night with the baby, you should do the dishes.” While it’s natural to feel this way, keeping score can lead to resentment and damage your relationship over time.
The key here is to remember that you’re on the same team, working towards the same goal – raising your child. Here are some tips to keep the scorecard away:
- Share the Load: Rather than dividing chores strictly, focus on sharing the load. This doesn’t mean that every task has to be divided equally, but both partners should feel that the overall load of work is shared fairly.
- Communicate Openly: If you’re feeling overwhelmed, it’s important to communicate this to your partner rather than keeping score. They might not even realize you’re feeling this way and could help more if they knew.
- Empathize with Each Other: Each parent may have different challenges. Empathize with your partner’s experiences and offer help when they need it. Remember, a problem shared is a problem halved.
- Celebrate Teamwork: Instead of keeping track of who did what, celebrate the achievements you’ve made together. Managed to soothe a fussy baby? That’s a team win! Navigated your first outing with your baby? Another win for the team!
Make Each Moment A Special One!
As new parents, most of your time and energy revolves around your baby. And amidst diaper changes, feedings, and nap times, it can be easy to overlook the countless beautiful moments that unfold each day. In this whirlwind of new responsibilities, it’s essential to pause, observe, and make each moment a special one – not just for your baby, but for your relationship as well.
Here are a few ways to add a sprinkle of special to your everyday life:
- Share Firsts: The first smile, the first babble, the first step – your baby’s life will be filled with ‘firsts’. Experience these precious moments together and let them be a source of shared joy and bonding.
- Express Gratitude: Make it a point to express gratitude for each other regularly. A simple “thank you for cooking dinner tonight” or “I appreciate you taking care of the baby while I rested” can mean a lot.
- Create New Traditions: Start new family traditions. It could be something as simple as a Sunday morning walk in the park or a bedtime story ritual. These create shared experiences and lasting memories.
- Catch Quiet Moments: When the baby is asleep or quietly observing the world, take a moment to connect. It could be a quick cuddle, a shared joke, or a loving glance. These quiet moments of connection can make ordinary days feel special.
Ask For Help From Others
Parenthood is an exciting and fulfilling journey, but it can also be overwhelming. Remember, it’s completely okay to feel exhausted and need a break. One important fact to remember is that you are not alone in this journey. There’s a saying, “It takes a village to raise a child,” and it holds true. Don’t hesitate to reach out for help when you need it. It doesn’t make you any less of a parent; instead, it shows your commitment to providing the best for your child while also taking care of your own well-being and relationship.
Here are a few ways you can seek help:
- Grandparents: The joy of becoming a grandparent is immense, and they would likely be more than willing to lend a helping hand. They have been in your shoes before and can provide valuable insights, support, and respite when needed.
- Friends with Children: Friends who are parents can be a great source of advice, encouragement, and practical help. They understand the challenges you’re going through and can offer tips based on their experiences.
- Community Support: From parent groups to baby classes, there are many community resources available. These provide not only practical assistance but also emotional support and a sense of camaraderie.
- Professional Help: Sometimes, a babysitter might be what you need. There’s no harm in seeking their services if you have the means.
Do Not Let The Arrival Hit Your Sex Life
Becoming parents brings immeasurable joy and a myriad of new experiences, but it can also create significant changes in your intimate life. It’s common for sex to take a backseat post-baby due to a combination of factors and simply adjusting to new routines and responsibilities. This shift is entirely normal, but it’s crucial not to let the spark in your relationship fade away entirely.
Here are a few strategies to keep your intimate life alive:
- Be Patient: Your bodies have undergone significant changes, and it’s essential to give them time to heal. There’s no rush to bounce back to your pre-baby sex life. Patience and understanding are key.
- Communicate: Open communication about your feelings, desires, and concerns is crucial. Talk to your partner about what you’re comfortable with and how you’re feeling. Emotional intimacy often paves the way for physical intimacy.
- Be Flexible: With a baby in the mix, spontaneity might seem like a luxury, but flexibility can work wonders. Make the most of those quiet moments when the baby is sleeping or during their daycare time. Remember, intimacy isn’t always about sex; it could be cuddling, holding hands, sharing a kiss, or simply lying down together.
- Keep the Romance Alive: Small gestures can go a long way in maintaining the spark. Leave love notes for each other, compliment each other, or surprise your partner with their favorite meal.
Seek Professional Help Even If It Is Not Required
It’s normal to face challenges and uncertainties during this phase, and seeking professional help is a proactive and responsible way to deal with them. Often, couples wait until a problem becomes unmanageable before reaching out for professional help. But taking the initiative to consult a professional, even when things seem okay, can provide tools and strategies to keep your relationship healthy.
Here’s how professional help, like relationship therapy, can benefit new parents:
- Better Communication: Therapists can provide effective techniques to enhance communication between partners, ensuring that both of you feel heard and understood.
- Conflict Resolution: Disagreements are a part of every relationship. Professionals can teach you healthier ways to navigate conflicts, reducing stress and misunderstanding.
- Balancing Roles: Shifting from partners to parents can blur boundaries. A professional can help you establish and maintain a balance between your new roles as parents and your existing relationship as a couple.
- Strengthen Bond: Therapy can deepen your connection by highlighting shared goals, values, and dreams, helping you stay connected amidst the demands of parenting.
- Mental Health Check: Parenthood can trigger a range of emotions, and sometimes, it might lead to postpartum depression or anxiety. Regular check-ins with a professional can help monitor these aspects, ensuring timely intervention if required.
Remember, seeking professional help is not an admission of failure; instead, it’s an investment in your relationship and family. So, don’t shy away from reaching out for guidance and support because every family deserves the best start possible!
As we wrap up this guide, let’s take a moment to acknowledge the tremendous changes that parenthood brings – it’s a life-altering adventure filled with laughter, love, challenges, and victories. But, but, but… Being parents doesn’t mean you stop being lovers, friends, or individuals. Maintain the uniqueness that makes your relationship special and keep the flame of love alive amidst the beautiful chaos of parenting.
Relationships are complex, and it’s natural for issues to arise along the way. If you have any queries regarding Relationship Counseling experienced therapists at CoupleMantra can help: Book a trial couple therapy session