New Baby and Relationships
Updated: Apr 20, 2022
This week is for those in a relationship.
**I use ‘mum and dad’ context in the blog but totally get it could work as mum & mum or dad & dad**
When I think about postnatal life, relationships are a vital part of that landscape.
You get the news you are pregnant and all those feelings flood in for you both. Excitement, nervousness, you are going to be parents. You chat with friends, things start to feel more real.
Still excited, full of love.
Sometimes though the strains of new family life kick in; Worry about providing for your family
Tiredness kicks in
One may feel that they are ‘working’ harder than the other
One may feel they are not being listened to
One may feel they have been at work all day and the other holding the baby (baby and other kids in some cases) and should have a break
One may want things a certain way but that isn’t as important to the other
Here are some ideas to get you working as a well-oiled machine:
If you are reading this when pregnant, then make this part of your preparation. To sit down with your partner and chat about how it’s going to work when the baby is here – who will do what when? When will each of you get your rest? How it will work with siblings and keep their routine as similar as possible?
It may feel like passing ships in the beginning – try and take small chunks of the day to do things together – breakfast or dinner together for example
Appreciate you are both doing a hard ‘job’ in different areas. When I heard the words “I know it’s hard for you” it meant the world to know I was understood and appreciated
Keep talking – one of the biggest struggles for couples is the lack of communication. Don’t assume how they are feeling...
Laugh about the chaos! They will be lots of it – see the funnies and know this isn’t forever.
Plan in some family time – do things together where you can, feel that unit, your family as a one
Mum and Dad will have their own way of doing things – settling a baby or bath times. If you have asked for help, let Dad find their way of doing things. It may be not the same but telling them how they should be doing things won’t always help.
Lots of reassurance on both sides - typically, mum spends more time with babies (not always but most of the time) so can often get used to baby norms quicker but we still need to know we are doing things ‘right’.
Dad will be no different – he may spend less time with baby so needs to find his way in the times he has with baby. Offer up oodles of assurance. Confidence is a great feeling!
As a doula, I have supported lots of mums but I also chat to the Dads too – questions they have I have supported oodles of mums with a second child, even third. I would be more than happy to do the same for you.
In the light version of Uplevelled!, Antenatal before being Postnatal can be a session for mum and dad. For you both to plan, talk through questions and niggles, and hear how the other one is feeling. I’ll be asking the questions and guiding you both through.
If this interests you both then hop onto a session by clicking the link above.