Some parents are great about making time to reconnect with each other while others go weeks and sometimes months without having a “date.” You know, what you used to do before your conversations consisted of diaper duty, to do lists and met milestones.
Setting aside time to reconnect may seem trivial or even conjure up feelings of guilt about being away from your baby, or anxiety about having nothing to talk to your mate about except for the day to day chores. This is all “normal” and very common.
It is easy to lose yourself (and your marriage) in the day to day routine. It is helpful to take time out of your week to decompress and recharge your battery. It allows you to look in the mirror and see a strong, sexy, accomplished person, rather than a tired, worn, resentful parent. This same concept stands true for taking time to reconnect with your mate, which will allow you to remember why you chose each other in the first place, and how there is more to your relationship than the chores assigned (or at times forgotten). If you feel guilty about taking time away from your little one, or that somehow needing this time for yourself or your partner must mean that you are a “bad” parent or must not love your baby enough to be around him/her 24/7, those are all common emotions, but not anything to feel guilty about.
Taking even a few hours a week for yourself allows you to clear your head, feel like a “real” person with goals, vision and passion and enables you to come back to your baby with clarity and perspective. Think of it as giving yourself a time-out to take a well needed break, catch your breath and regroup, so you continue to make good choices. It is not only toddlers who need periodic time outs.
In addition, you and your partner are your baby’s first example of love. Making time to stay connected and continue to develop your marriage will provide your child with a wonderful example of a healthy relationship–one that takes continual time, energy and work and has its occasional ups and downs. While it is a lot of pressure, it is inevitable that your child will look to you and your marriage as a model and guideline as they learn to balance their emotions and form future relationships.
Clinical Psychologist Shoshana Bennett focuses on moods, pregnancy and post-partum depression, and provides advice regarding how best to reconnect with one another post baby. In addition, there are numerous articles in popular parenting magazines and other online resources reminding families that sex, intimacy and managing your marriage are very common topics both pre and postpartum. Maintaining a healthy relationship and foundation is important for you and your little one, and there is endless literature, research and personal articles discussing these topics and providing advice.
While there are many ways to reconnect, and it is essential that you do what feels most comfortable for you and your family, there are a few suggestions and links below to help you take a necessary time out.
- Baby Center:
- The Bump: