We all know that relationships change post-baby, but not one person warned me quite how much having a baby would take a toll on the dynamic between my partner and myself. The thing about relationships is that they require time and energy - the two things that we absolutely don’t have when we become parents.
My partner and I met whilst travelling, we were obsessed with planning our trip to the next country, eating as and when we felt like it, and nights drinking wine together until the early hours. Well, as soon as I got pregnant, all of that came to a screeching halt.
The things we used to do to connect as a couple were no longer doable. Our passports slowly worked their way to the back of a cupboard, and we were suddenly thrown into a life that I don’t think either of us was ready for.
When our daughter came into our lives we no longer had nights alone, we didn’t even have 5 minutes alone! Our sex life took a back back back seat, and to be honest, I don’t think either of us really cared at the time. But our relationship did. It’s hard to connect with your partner when you’re terrified of waking the baby up, or when you’re still wearing your maternity underwear from when you were pregnant - it’s not just me, right?
Although this new lifestyle was nobody’s ‘fault’, I think we blamed each other a little bit. My partner went into full-time work in a factory next to his mum’s house - where we now lived - and I spent every single hour of every day bringing up a baby single-handedly, in a house that wasn’t my own, with no friends or family to help me.
I would get frustrated feeling like he was doing so little to contribute to looking after our daughter, and he was almost at rock-bottom with how much he hated his new job. My mind reached new levels of stress and irritability, and there was nothing that anybody could do to make it stop. That’s until I learnt that I could stop relying on my partner, and start working on myself.
I started using MamaZen as a way to de-stress, relinquish a little control, and connect back to myself. What I got was so much more! I could finally see things through my partner’s eyes. With more mental clarity and stability, I stopped being angry at him for not doing something that I had never actually asked him to do. I started to understand that he is a new parent and learning just as much as I am. And I realised that the happier and more care-free I was, the stronger our relationship became.
The romantic side of our relationship quickly improved too - and from there, it’s just one positive thing affecting another, until finally, we started to feel like our old selves again. But with a wonderful new addition that we wouldn’t change for the world!
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