8 Ways to Babyproof your Relationship .. after the arrival

The goal is to have a conversation in a way so that you can have another conversation tomorrow . Unknown

babynewsmWhen your baby is born it may feel like it’s your birthday, with lots of attention, gifts and well wishers, but the reality is that looking after a new baby can be hard on your relationship as well as on you individually.

Children are both the best and hardest challenge for a couple, they bring joy and love as well as frustration, anxiety and test parents to their limits. Amidst all this it’s easy to lose track of what brought them here in the first place, your relationship.

Once your baby arrives it’s important to look after yourselves, not just for your own sakes but everyone in the family:

  • Take time out to talk, listen and to have fun together
  • Make time for each of you to be alone, hang out with friends and remember what it’s like to be you, not mum or dad
  • Be flexible, and be prepared to change your approach as your child’s needs develop
  • Be realistic about what you can manage .. Simplify, simplify, simplify!!
  • Avoid being territorial about the baby, share with your partner even if they do things differently to you
  • Be each other’s cheerleaders and point out successes at least once a day
  • Keep an eye on each other to watch for signs of postnatal depression or other indications that you’re finding the adjustment tough
  • Find outside sources of support in your community or online, like mumsnet or http://newdadsnetwork.com to help you through this time

And above all don’t give up, if you feel you need additional help with your relationship contact a specialist relationship counselling organization like Relate or a qualified private relationship counsellor.

With thanks for much of this material to Elizabeth Martyn, whose book Babyshock, is one of a series of books by Relate on maintaining happy and healthy relationships.

babynewWhat do you think? Have you been given any really useful advice about becoming a parent? Are you finding things difficult and would appreciate a confidential place to talk about it?

Get in touch using the form below or using my contact details.

Tell, Be With, Give, Do or Cuddle?

I get a number of relationship blogs delivered to my email Inbox every day, and to be honest sometimes I hit delete pretty fast as I go through them. This morning though, one email caught my eye, and my imagination, and I clicked through to Gary Chapman’s website at http://www.5lovelanguages.com/ to see what the fuss was about.

I’d recommend taking a look too and doing the free questionnaire to find your preferred love languages, whether you’re trying to save your marriage, preparing to make a commitment or single. This tool would help in all relationships, particularly with your children and teenagers as they grow and develop their own ‘Love Language’ which may be very different to your own.

It’d be nice if our partners magically knew what we need, and sometimes in the early stages of a relationship it seems that’s the case. But in reality knowing yourself in a relationship is vital to being able to clearly ask your partner for what you need and to make your relationship work. This is a great tool to find out what your partner can do that’ll really make you feel special.

And don’t forget them! Send them the questionnaire and talk about the similarities and differences in your ‘Love Languages’, it might be why they get so much out of a quiet night on the sofa for Date Night, while what lights you up is being read poetry.

Have a go and get in touch to let me know how you get on ..