Most couples I know have changed after they became parents. As much as we look forward to motherhood and fatherhood, becoming a parent is a big change that happens in your life, which brings in a lot of other changes. Parenting indeed is the most rewarding part of our lives... but it literally ruins us too.
During my pregnancy, I was being cautious. Almost too cautious. And while trying to be careful throughout that phase, I could give very little emphasis to the bond I shared with my husband. And after I became a mother, things went from being bad to worse. As a mother’s bond with a child grows, it’s likely that her other relationships begin to deteriorate. And this is what happened to us...
Why Marriages Change After The Baby Arrives
According to research, having children affects a marriage. The relationship between spouses suffers once kids come along. When comparing couples with and without children, researchers found that the rate of the decline in relationship satisfaction is nearly twice as steep for couples who have children than for childless couples.
An addition to the number of the members of the family changes the entire dynamics of our existing lives. So much so that the overall tempo and tone of the house seems to change completely. Parents often become more distant with each other as they get busy attending to the day-to-day details of parenting. From figuring out ways to feed the newborn, cleaning his poops to taking care of laundry, making enough money to pay the bills, and planning for the future – everything takes up a lot of our mental space. In the effort to keep the family running smoothly, parents discuss pick and drops, and monthly expenses, instead of what’s the latest in each other’s lives.
Of all the things I regret, one that I regret the most is giving up leading a normal ‘wife-y’ life. Here is a list of things my husband and I stopped doing right after becoming parents. I am sharing it with you so you don’t make the same mistakes we made.
3 Things My Hubby and I Stopped Doing – Which You NEVER Should
1. Asking For Help
Before we became parents, my husband would often offer to make us a cup of tea. I though we were pretty straight in understanding the rules of not falling prey to gender-stereotypical ways of parenting in the scene. But, they crept in still, and so I would always end up fixing us a meal, changing diapers, taking care of laundry and everything else!
I don’t think my husband would have said 'no' if I would have asked for help. I mean we all know that its mothers, not fathers, who bear the heaviest cost of becoming parents. But we certainly do not have to bear the entire load on our own.
DO THIS: Whether you are a working mom or a stay-at-home-mom, never hesitate to ask your husband to take charge of certain household chores. This way – he will feel a sense of responsibility (other than the financial one) as well as stay in touch with the reality.
2. Showing Affection Towards Each Other
New moms often become way too disconnected from friends and colleagues. All of a sudden, my world felt like it was shrinking. All of these changes lead to fundamental and long-lasting effects... which also become an issue to fight over with the spouse! I am not saying that you should step out and go meet your girls leaving a cry baby in the arms of your husband. But there has to be some solution.
DO THIS: Instead, turn this into an opportunity of strengthening the bond with your partner. Confide in him, share your daily scenes with the partner. He will be all ears. Crack jokes, laugh together, feel emotional, be apologetic, hold hands and kiss. Don’t leave any room for ah rated discussion. Life is too short to crib and whine over things which are actually a phase that shall pass in no time.
3. Going Out on Dates
It can take us some time to understand the significance of this - but there is a life beyond parenthood. Tagging your newborn along everywhere you go will only take a toll on you. You will end up saying- ‘But, I didn’t have fun at all. My baby was so cranky.'
DO THIS: Have fun together! Call your mom or mother-in-law for a night to take care of the little one while you step out for a movie date. Go meet your old friends, shop together, or just surprise each other by turning up at their workplace after office hours. The idea is to be creative and feel light.
From my experience, I want to tell all mommies – please DON’T stop doing things your husband and you loved doing before becoming parents. It will be harder yes, but stay calm and be patient. Do remember that life is too short to crib and whine over things which shall pass in no time.
Despite all the speed breaks parenting tends to put in the lives of moms and dads, parenthood remains the greatest joy - and all of us know it. :)
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