Everyone knows that babies are life changing, but did you know that having one will also change your relationship? When you were pregnant, your parent friends probably kept advising you to ‘date’ your partner, take a vacation and simply enjoy your freedom as a couple before the baby arrived. You most likely ignored this advice and instead spent nine months eating ice-cream snuggled up on the sofa like countless women before you.
Now that you’re a parent, however, you can probably understand what those friends were trying to tell you. Without scaring you, they were simply trying to let you know that your relationship would never be the same again. Life as parents is totally different to life as a couple or life as newlyweds. Here are just five of the ways your relationship changes after having a baby:
- The neverending sleep debate
You will spend approximately the next five years of your relationship enjoying a healthy debate into who is the most tired. You think it’s you, your partner thinks it’s him. This argument won’t stop until your child (children, if you choose to have more, thus elongating the length of the debate) sleeps well. This will take years, sorry, but it will. Until then, you’ll spend about 80% of your waking moments as a couple arguing over who is the most tired. It’s you, obviously.
- The new date night
In your pre-parent days, date night probably meant getting dressed up in your finery, eating at an expensive restaurant and drinking too many cocktails before spending the night in a fancy hotel. These days you’re lucky if you can make it through the takeaway without having to breastfeed, finish an episode on Netflix before having to run up and check on the baby, or manage one cocktail before collapsing from sheer exhaustion.
Your partner won’t be top of your list anymore, and you should expect to find you’re plummeted down a place too. Once you became a parent, your child will always be the most important thing in your life. The good news is, being a close second isn’t bad at all. You love each other just as much as you did before, there’s just another special person you each love even more these days, and that’s not a bad thing.
- The sex
Sex is different now. Not because you’ve had a baby, but because you’re both exhausted, because you feel ‘touched out’ at the end of the day and because you want nothing more than to be alone, just for a little bit. You might not be having sex as often, or as well, as you once did. It might feel a little forced at times, perhaps a little rushed. Don’t worry too much, your sex life should get back on track as your baby starts to need you a little less.
- The turn-ons
Don’t worry, you will still find your partner attractive. Only these days, it will be different things that make you swoon. Nothing will make you want to jump your partner more than waking up to discover you’ve had an unexpected lie in because he’s taking care of the baby downstairs so you can catch up on your beauty sleep. The sight of him lulling your baby to sleep by rocking him in his arms will stretch your heart to a size you didn’t even know possible. Now that you’re a parent, it’s the sight of your partner being a good dad that will leave you feeling pretty damn lucky to be a part of his life.
How has your relationship changed since having a baby?
Written by Fiona (@Fiona_Peacock), mother, writer and lover of all things baby related.
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a trained medical doctor. Health & Parenting Ltd disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information, which is provided to you on a general information basis only and not as a substitute for personalized medical advice. All contents copyright © Health & Parenting Ltd 2016. All rights reserved.