Tips to Maintain Intimacy in a Marriage With a Newborn
Making a new addition to the family can be quite exciting. There will be so much to do, like picking out names, colors for the nursery, and let’s not forget- the BABY SHOWER.
There will be great times of dreaming about what that day will feel like when you two become parents and bring up a human together.
You will feel nervous and fear if you will be enough and if you are cut out for the job.
There are so many opportunities to strengthen the relationship between a married couple within nine to ten months before you welcome the bundle of joy.
Not to mention the joy that it can bring to a family when it graces the Earth. However, it does come with its own set of challenges.
Managing your marriage after having a baby can entail some serious challenges, including relationship changes after baby, and a dip in romance once the baby arrives. So, this begs the question, how to spice up your marriage after a baby?
Take my advice on how to keep a relationship strong after having a baby- do not try to fit your baby into your schedule as doing so will cause tons of headaches and disappointments. Instead, fully embrace the change.
It will be fun, trust me!
Managing your marriage after having a baby is an opportunity to create new hobbies, habits, and hangout spots together.
Do not believe the rumors centering on the subject. Intimacy can exist with a newborn, but it will take some work on your end.
In this article, we will discuss how to go about maintaining that intimacy despite your circumstances and how to keep a relationship strong after having a baby.
1. Using the baby’s nap time wisely
Contrary to popular belief surrounding marriage after baby, I do not recommend always sleeping while the baby is sleeping.
Obviously, you will have times, but that does not always have to be the case. There will be times that you get a good night’s rest. Those days are the days that I recommend using that time to cuddle on the couch with your spouse during baby’s nap time.
Catch a quick TV show or a movie, or just have a cup of coffee and catch up on what’s new and old. You must learn the patterns of your baby’s sleep schedule so that you can plan and figure out what you want to do in those brief moments.
Trust me, those moments in your marriage after the baby arrives will be brief, but it is not so bad when that is expected. Think of these brief-time slots as opportunities for cute little mini-dates.
Remember that perception is everything. If you perceive something to be wrong, that is exactly what it will look like, feel like, and be, but if you view something as fresh, fun, and new, then that is exactly what it will look like, feel like and be.
Once you get a predictable schedule, things will get easier for you and your spouse in the challenging scenario of marriage after the baby.
Getting yourself on a schedule is a great way to ensure that everything important to you is getting done. Prepare yourself for the surprises, missed windows, imperfect days, and train yourself to be okay with those things.
Coming from personal experience of marriage after baby, I can say that for my husband and me, it took teamwork. There were times that he would remind me to use the baby’s nap time wisely, and there would be times that I would remind him.
Regardless of who reminded who, we got that time together, and it made a world of difference.
2. Plan ahead for everything
As new parents, my husband and I did not feel comfortable leaving our little guy with a sitter. He was breastfed, and we still had new parent anxiety. But that never stopped us from spending that much-needed quality time together, which, by the way, if you did not know, is a key component of true intimacy.
I would even argue that it is one of the reasons why my son does so well in cars now because he was in one often. Rather it is a night out to dinner or even a weekend vacation. It is very much possible to enjoy each other with the baby.
Now, this will take some thinking ahead and planning.
There is nothing like being at a nice restaurant, and you’ve forgotten the baby’s binky, and all you and the entire restaurant can hear is a baby wailing and screaming. It can be embarrassing and nerve-wracking.
My advice to you is very simple.
Plan for the worst. My friends would joke that I always pack like I am going on a voyage when I was only going out for a few hours but, it is essential to anticipate the unexpected. That way, when it happens, you have a quick solution, and it does not cause too much disruption to your spouse or others around you.
The peace of mind that you have when everything important to you is at your fingertips is unsurmountable. Try it.
3. Understanding is key
The last tip that I have for a couple in a marriage after the baby is to understand the circumstances and roles that both of you must play.
Understanding adds to communication between husband and wife, which kindles the fire of intimacy. I’ve seen different scenarios of the caretaking of a baby.
A wife or a husband can be the primary caretaker. Both are equally possible. So, I will use my own marriage as an example in efforts to eliminate confusion.
When we brought my son and daughter home from the hospital, I stayed home with them and was exhausted. My husband went to work, and he came home very exhausted. We both understood that both roles are important, and no one played the “I work harder than you” card.
This allowed us to be each other’s haven and escape from stress and exhaustion.
A very important component of intimacy in marriage after the baby is the physical aspect of it. It may be a hard transition, but it is necessary to fight to keep that part of the marriage very relevant and frequent.
After all, it is a huge stress reliever and a must to maintain a strong connection. Before the kids, we would make love at night, but we both understood that if we ever wanted to get physical, it would have to be spontaneous because that is what the situation allowed.
Again, an understanding was the glue that held us together in this temporary season of our lives.
Children become adults, but a marriage lasts a lot longer than childhood does. It is imperative to understand that and live your lives together as a family accordingly.
Watch this video where perinatal psychologist Dr. Alyssa Berlin, shares tips on how to keep your marriage and relationship strong after having a baby:
A final word on marriage after the baby
I am sure that these steps will not be the easiest to implement but trust me; it is much better to attack a situation with a plan than going at it half-heartedly.
Acting and implementing these tips will be worth the effort because intimacy is something that is worth fighting for.
Don’t beat yourself up. There will be times that you feel too tired to try to do anything but the bare minimum, and that is okay. It is all a part of the journey.
Remember that understanding will take you a very long way, and I am speaking from experience as a wife and mom of two children under four.
Yes, frustration crept in.
No, I didn’t always feel “in the mood,” but I pushed through those feelings because I realized that all the pressure I felt was temporary.
So, what about you? Will you push past whatever barriers are hindering you? Will you maintain intimacy in your marriage even with a newborn?
Want to have a happier, healthier marriage?
If you feel disconnected or frustrated about the state of your marriage but want to avoid separation and/or divorce, the marriage.com course meant for married couples is an excellent resource to help you overcome the most challenging aspects of being married.