If you’ve visited here for some time, you likely know the hubby and I have been on a long, windy road to pregnancy.
A decade of marriage. No baby yet. But we remain incredibly hopeful (and happy). That’s why I love reading posts like this one from HWC contributor, Paula Rollo.
They help me understand what to expect and allow us to talk about these things even before my hormones go a bit nutty .
If you have your own special package on its way, congratulations! You will be able to begin putting these suggestions to practice right away. Excited for you, my friend.
Until Monday…make it a great day!
With a baby on the way, it can be easy to let marriage slip to the back burner.
Babies require a lot of time, attention and energy, so it is important for couples to put alot of effort into their marriage, both before and after the baby is born.
Doing this will help ensure the marriage relationship continues to grow stronger in the midst of all the life transitions that come with the birth of a new bundle of joy!
Wondering what you can do to get ready?
1. Enhanced Communication. Communication has always been an important part of marriage, but it becomes more essential as your family grows. Long and intricate conversations with your spouse will now be interrupted by baby’s feedings and diaper changes.
Take some time to find new ways to communicate your love and needs to one another, without beating around the bush or trying to rely on subtle hints. Loving honesty and truthful conversations are important, now more than ever.
2. Respect the Hormones. Wives, I’m talking to you! The pregnancy hormones may calm down after baby is born, but that doesn’t mean you are free and clear.
It may take several weeks or even months for your hormones to get back to normal, especially if you are breastfeeding. Don’t be surprised if you find yourself still being a bit weepy or sensitive. That’s okay!
The key here is to be able to identify when the hormones are making you feel wonky, and allow yourself a break. If you realize you are getting annoyed or irritated with your husband, step back for a moment and think. Chances are your hormones are just acting up and your hubby is not to blame.
In our family, it helped a lot when I was able to tell my husband something like “I’m not really mad at you, my hormones are just making me feel bad right now.” When I did this, he was able to support and love on me, instead of feeling the need to get defensive about something he said (or did) that wouldn’t have mattered if my hormones weren’t being crazy.
Respect the hormones, and find ways to clue your hubby in that you may be having a hormonal day! Those days are hard on the hubbies too, not just the wives.
3. Priorities. When baby comes, you will both find yourselves very tired, and scrambling for time to complete your normal activities. It is a good practice to identify the most important things to each of you, so that you can both try to prioritize accordingly.
If you’re usually the one who cleans and only have time to tidy one room today, do you know which one would mean the most to your husband to have cleaned? If given the choice, does he know if you would prefer a home-cooked meal from him, or all the laundry washed and put away? Do neither of you really care if the bed is made, or the floors vacuumed?
Take the time to discuss these things before they become issues, and don’t waste your energy on the things that don’t matter as much to either of you. There will be days when neither of you can keep up with everything that you used to do, this is normal and the season will pass eventually. Knowing your partner’s pet peeves and specific desires can help reduce stress and eliminate disagreements during this transitional season of life.
4. Lower your standards - I know that sounds bad, but hear me out. Before baby, you had more time and money to spend on date nights or simple evenings of relaxation together. Once baby is born, it might (read: likely) become more difficult to get out of the house or even to spend a full evening cuddling together on the couch without interruption. Lower your expectations for at least a few months, and learn to find joy in the time that you do get to spend together.
It may not be at a 5-star restaurant, but a quiet dinner at home while the baby sleeps, can be just as romantic! Remember that the important thing is time together, regardless of where or when that time is spent! (Check out this post for 10 fun home date night ideas that are perfect for post-baby dating!)
5. The 3 month wait. If at any time (or all the time!) you find yourself feeling overwhelmed or worried about what your life is becoming, don’t fret! Give it a few weeks. Things change fast with a baby, and chances are in 3 months or so, you will be feeling a lot more rested, calm and confident as parents. This baby business can be hard work, but it does get easier, I promise!
Don’t be too hard on yourself, or your spouse if things don’t immediately flow perfectly. Learning and growing together means working through the rough times and the crazy bumps that life throws at us. A baby changes everything, but that is not a bad thing. Marriage can get stronger and sweeter with time and with babies! It might take a bit of extra work to keep those butterflies going, but it will be more than worth it!
Looking for more tips? Check out this post to learn 7 Ways to Keep the Romance Alive After the Baby is Born.
QUESTION: What marriage tips would you give a mom-to-be?
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