And Baby Makes...Conflict: Overcoming Common Post-Baby Relationship Pitfalls
Going from being a loving, connected couple to parents of a newborn drastically changes the dynamic of relationships. For many couples, this joyous event creates distance, resentment, and often even conflict. This change can be devastating, and even scary, for couples. If this has happened to you, have no fear-- you can rediscover connection and happiness with your partner. Here are some common relationship problems in the postpartum period, and tips for how to overcome them.
1) Different Roles. In the weeks and months after baby arrives, the baby is often mom-dependent. This can create feelings of overwhelm and even resentment in moms. Dads can feel left out during this period--with mom and baby bonded and attached at the breast, there is seemingly little he can do to help, and many dads feel very helpless and lonely.
The fix: Acknowledge and communicate about these differences. A little recognition can go a long way to make each partner feel heard, understood, and supported--which, in turn, fosters bonding and reconnection.
2) No time together. It used to be all about the two of you. Now, time together is encroached upon, at best, and often lacking all together. The fix: Get creative about alone time. Some couples enforce early bedtimes for the kids, so that they can have a little time in the evenings. I've even met couples who wake up extra early one morning per week for a quiet "breakfast date" in the kitchen.
3) Give yourself time to mourn. Most people don't think about this, since welcoming a new baby should be such a happy time, but you've also lost a lot. The fix: Recognize this, and allow yourself time to mourn what was, which will give you the closure to embrace your new relationship and family. In time, you can find ways to reincorporate parts of your old life with your new.
Finding outlets of support provides a space to vent, and decreases feelings of resentment. Want more tips, or extra support, with your adjustment to motherhood? Visit www.mostformoms.com.