Whether your first child is a pleasant surprise or an unexpected blessing, nothing will change your life quite like having a baby. What many new parents completely underestimate, however, is the effect that a new baby will have on them as a couple. After all, having a baby doesn’t just result in a change of identity for the two of you as individuals, but as a married couple as well.
Some of the changes will be for the better, some not so much. But with a little planning ahead and knowledge of what to expect, the two of you will be much better equipped to manage the transition gracefully. Here are five ways having babies changes your marriage.
1. Your Priorities Will Shift
Even if you always wanted children, it is very likely that your priorities will shift at least a little bit once the children actually come along. All of the money you used to spend on shopping or going out to eat will suddenly go to cute baby clothes and toys. You’ll probably spend a lot less time putting on make-up and getting all dolled up to go out on the town. Things like these simply won’t matter as much anymore.
2. Your Personalities May Shift as Well
While it is unlikely that you will change into a completely different person, chances are that your personalities will shift as you navigate your new roles as mom and dad. You may become less adventurous and fun-loving, opting to take care of grown-up responsibilities instead. You may become more loving, more defensive or more stressed. Parenthood affects everyone differently.
3. You’ll Have a Lot Less Time and Energy
While you don’t have to (and you shouldn’t!) say goodbye to date nights and grown-up time altogether, the fact of the matter is that you’ll probably have a lot less time for it than you did before. At the end of a long day, you may not have any energy left to spend quality time with each other. Give each other grace and reconnect when you can. And don’t worry–it gets better.
4. You May Experience Feelings of Resentment
Parenthood can bring on a lot of new emotions, and unfortunately, not all of them are happy. In fact, you may begin to resent your spouse for being able to get out of the house, for spending too much or too little time with the baby, for not helping out enough, for not losing his figure, or any number of other reasons. This is perfectly normal. Get through it by remembering that it likely isn’t anyone’s fault, by talking to your spouse about how you are feeling, and by making changes as necessary.
5. You’ll See Each Other in a Whole New Light
Thankfully, the changes that will happen when you have a baby aren’t all bad. You’ll also begin to see each other in a whole new light. After watching you give birth, he’ll realize how strong, brave and amazing you are. And once you see him hold your baby in his arms for the first time, you’ll fall in love with him all over again. You two aren’t just a couple anymore; you’re parents now. And that’s an amazing thing.
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