Keeping the couple strong when baby arrives
Having a child is wonderful news! Although most of the time, while expected and wanted, the arrival of a baby can turn a couple's life upside down. Familiprix, in collaboration with Vie de Parents, suggests a few ways to get through this new and destabilizing stage for many new parents.
What is the “baby clash?”
The term "baby clash" refers to the upheaval that the arrival of a newborn creates within a couple. In the case of a first child, daily life changes radically. Indeed, new responsibilities arise, feelings that were previously unknown appear, and the values of each partner are confronted. Coupled with fatigue, the situation risks giving way to tension and conflict by distancing the two life partners.
What are the sources of conflict in a couple when a baby arrives?
The changes that the arrival of a child brings to a couple's life are likely to create friction. There are many day-to-day challenges, such as:
The baby blues
Since the arrival of a first child is synonymous with upheaval, no one is immune to experiencing what is commonly called the “baby blues”. It is characterized by symptoms, including anxiety, irritability and mood swings. Although temporary, this period is very emotionally charged and often causes some tension.
Short, sleepless nights are common with a newborn. It can take weeks or even months for a child to get a few hours of sleep. Sleep deprivation can cause irritability on both sides.
Each person has their own background and values that are deeply rooted in their mind. When it comes to raising and educating a child, parents sometimes encounter some differences of opinion.
The subject of money can be a difficult one for a couple to deal with, long before the arrival of children. Finances tend to become an even more confrontational issue after having a baby. Expenses increase and sometimes cause disagreements between the two parents.
All the care and attention that an infant requires greatly reduces the time available for intimacy. Fatigue as well as post-delivery discomfort reduces interest in sex. With less time to be together, dissatisfaction can occur.
How to preserve the relationship?
Devenir parent demande énormément d’adaptation. Il est facile de se perdre de vue en tant que couple du fait que le rôle de parent est très accaparant. Afin que le couple puisse traverser cette étape cruciale, il est nécessaire de préserver le lien qui unit les deux parents. De petites actions font parfois toute la différence, par exemple :
Becoming a parent takes a lot of adjustment. It is easy to lose sight of each other as a couple because parenting is so overwhelming. In order for the couple to get through this crucial stage, it is necessary to preserve the bond between the two parents. Small actions can make a big difference. Here are some:
As the couple's time together becomes less frequent, because the baby's needs must be met, it is necessary to review one's priorities. Each parent must first adapt to their new role and accept that what was important before may be less so now. Despite all the tasks to be accomplished, couple time should be fairly high on the priority list.
Having the children babysat for an evening, or even a few days, in order to spend time together, allows you to find yourselves as a couple again. If the marital situation is getting worse, if you feel distant from your partner, or if arguments are becoming more frequent, don’t hesitate to ask for help by consulting a psychologist or a psychotherapist who is specialized in couples therapy.
Rekindle the flame
Small gestures alone help keep the flame burning in a couple, whether it's spontaneous compliments, surprise gifts, sincere gestures of affection, or doing your partner a favour. Showing love on both sides keeps the relationship alive.
Parenting is a big challenge for a couple. The important thing is to continue to invest time and love in your day-to-day life.