Once your baby arrives, you and your partner go from being a couple to being a family instead. It’s a subtle shift, but your changing relationship can suffer when your focus remains solely on the baby. Middle of the night diaper changes and feedings aren’t exactly the makings of a steamy romance.
So how do you integrate your old couples-only existence into your new life with a baby? A first start can be regular date nights! You don’t even need to leave your baby – you can reconnect with your partner without the stress of wondering how your baby is doing with the sitter. These baby-friendly ideas can get you started:
- Take a drive: Get in the car with no destination in mind and just drive. Choose out-of-the way roads and country scenery, if you can. Turn on some music, but keep it quiet enough for conversation. Bonus: the car will often lull baby to sleep.
- Plan a picnic: Throw a blanket down in the grass (or even on the living room floor if the weather isn’t great). Cook dinner together or shop for premade picnic foods, and enjoy an out-of-the-ordinary dinner together.
- Consider a staycation: Who says you need to go somewhere to relax? Unplug the phone and television, put away your mobile devices and computers. Forget about the housekeeping. Plan a weekend of doing nothing together at home. Eat easy meals, nap, read, take long showers, talk, laugh. You’ll still need to care for baby, but you can let the outside world disappear for a couple of days
- Go to the movies: It’s easy to go to the movie theater when you’ve got a newborn. Any time your baby stirs, feed him (especially simple if you’re breastfeeding). Wear your baby in a sling or wrap – he may sleep the whole time. Even better? Find a drive-in movie theater. If baby fusses, it won’t bother anyone. And you may be able to get away with wearing your pajamas!
- Walk or hike: If you’re missing the outdoors, hike, walk or ride bikes together. You can take baby along on any of these excursions with the right equipment. The exercise, fresh air and sunshine will do all of you some good.
- Meet for a power lunch: If you’re tired by 7pm and can’t imagine going out to eat, consider meeting for lunch instead. There’s no reason romance should be confined to the evening and nighttime hours.
- Have a wine and cheese party at sunset: Enjoy appetizers al fresco and watch the sun go down. Hold hands or snuggle under a blanket if it’s chilly out.
- Dress up for dinner: Get ready as you would if you were going to a fancy restaurant. Plan a gourmet meal, and cook together. Or order out so you don’t have to do any work.
- Light a fire: Whether it’s a fireplace in your living room, a fire pit in your garden, or simply some candles with the lights turned off, spend time together whispering and enjoying the soft, romantic lighting. Who knows what other speaks it might ignite?
The key – no matter what you choose to do on your date – is to NOT to spend the whole evening talking about the baby or any babycare topics. Find conversation starters if you’re having trouble not discussing your cute little bundle’s milestones.
Most of all, remember that you’re in this together. Supporting each other in your changing parenting roles will make your family happier as it grows.
Written by Michelle, childbirth instructor, lactation consultant, and mother to 4 busy kids
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.