Now, this is absolutely a work in progress for my husband and I, but this topic comes up a lot as a concern for new moms. A marriage is hard work regardless, and when you add a baby into the mix, although it will bring you and your husband the most joyous time and memories of your life, it can also put strain on your marriage.
When you welcome a new baby into your family you’re both sleep deprived, covered in spit up and 100 percent focused on your baby’s needs, and it becomes very easy for you to put your relationship on the back burner.
It’s difficult to balance your relationship with your significant other but so important to continue to work on it, for the well being of you and your growing family.
Here is a list I’ve compiled with the help of a few experienced mamas of ways to sustain a good relationship with your significant other after baby.
- Pay attention to him and be nice. Duh…this is obviously a simple one but I mention it because it’s also very easy to forget when you are doting on your little miracle every second you can…so here’s your conscious reminder to kiss him hello and goodbye and ask him how he’s doing and how his day went. A little interest in him will go a long way.
- Never stop laughing. Don’t be so serious…having fun with each other and laughing is so important in any relationship. Just recently we were half way through a long car ride home when both kids were screaming and instead of complaining or stressing about it we just started laughing hysterically. Sometimes you just need to do that.
- Plan a date night at least once a month. Ditch the spit up covered nursing tanks, do your hair, and put some makeup on. You don’t have to do anything extravagant…just get out. Go to your favorite restaurant, go to the movies, go to a coffee shop…anything really that just involves the two of you. Oh yeah, and try to keep the baby conversations to a minimum…I know it’s hard, but trust me.
- Put your technology away for a few hours at night. This is a HARD one for our family but we have recently made small steps to keep the phone away during family time, especially at meals. Relax…you can respond to your emails, update your Facebook status and Tweet your little heart out at any time…try to give it a rest at night and just talk to each other :).
- Send a nice text or email during the day, or heck, go old fashioned and stick a hand-written note in his bag. A little note can go a long way. It always puts a smile on my face when I receive a sweet little tid bit from Phil among our texts about the kids and family business to take care of.
- Go out of your way to make his favorite dinner. I know it’s hard to cook while trying to meet the needs of your kids but it can be done, I promise. If you really don’t want to cook order from his favorite take out place. Food always makes my husband happy :).
- Plan an overnight trip at least once a year. Have your parents or in laws come stay at your house for the weekend and get away for a night or two. I know it’s hard to think about leaving your little one, but I’m not saying to leave your baby for a few weeks and backpack across Europe…just a couple of days. You deserve a break and it’s a perfect opportunity to reconnect with your husband.
- Do stuff together. You will quickly learn that when you have little ones at home your Friday nights and weekends will be A LOT different. You will be home early and the kids will be in bed early on most nights. Take advantage of this time…get into a new show together, cook dinner together, read a book, watch a movie…I can think of MANY more :).
- Encourage your significant other to go out with the guys. My husband hardly ever goes out because he always wants to spend time with his family, but I know how important it is for him to go meet his friends for dinner or go to a sporting event…a little guys night out. He’s always happy he did and in a good mood to have that time away with friends. Same goes for you mama…get out with the girls and have brunch, go shopping and get your nails done.
- Plan fun family outings/traditions. I know most of this list is about how to work on just your relationship with your husband, but another big part of it is to enjoy each other as your new roles as mom and dad. You’ll laugh but one of our favorite things to do as a family is to go to the diner on Sundays after church for breakfast. You will see how it really is the little things that mean the most.
It’s true…your children are only little once and you want to cherish that time. There’s no doubt that this will change your relationship with your significant other after your baby arrives, but it doesn’t mean that it has to be a bad thing.