You love your husband. Heck, you had a baby with the guy.
But uhhh… things have changed.
Ever since having a baby, everything in your marriage is different and is just flat-out hard.
I’ve asked Christian wives that I love and respect for their best marriage after baby tips. Let’s jump in!
Marriage After Baby – Our Experience
My husband and my’s marriage has changed significantly after our daughter has joined us. (Even now that it’s almost been 2 years)
To be honest, we are still learning how to love one another well during this season of becoming parents. It is hard to keep your marriage as the top priority when your new baby demands all of your time and energy.
I passionately love my husband and have made it my mission to actively invest in our marriage.
Here’s what I’m doing to invest in my marriage after baby:
- Renew my mind to align with what God desires for my marriage. (Ahem, to sanctify me… and that doesn’t always feel so good.)
- Pray for a generously loving heart that doesn’t compare.
- Learn new two-player games to spend better quality time together.
- Communicate every single thing that I’m thinking. I tend to be an under-communicator (in spite of the fact that I can talk my jaw off) so if I strive to express everything that I have going on in my mind, then I know I’ll be at least saying most of what’s truly important to me.
So, why does having a baby affect marriage?
Many of you know this answer in a deep place of your soul.
Having babies and small children affects marriage because:
- There is not as much time in the evening to spend as a couple.
- It is harder to go out. Period. It doesn’t matter whether you have the baby with you or can manage to get out as a couple. It’s just more difficult.
- There can be disagreements on what to do for your child. As parents, we have so many choices to make. We get to decide what we want for their daily routine, health, family traditions, and wardrobe. (Anybody else not seeing eye-to-eye on outfit choices? I’ll never know why my husband can’t get on board with animal print.)
- You are both dealing with sleep deprivation and fatigue.
- There will be comparisons of who works “harder.” The one who cares for the baby primarily vs. the one who is working. (By the way, neither of you can win this! You need each other to provide for your baby’s needs.)
- Babies are needy.
- There is a need to redelegate roles around the home. The new mother will now have more to do and will need her partner to take on some of the tasks she used to do.
- Babies are expensive! Parents often have disagreements about what they should and shouldn’t purchase for their baby. But, overall, the financial strain in and of itself can cause marital tension.
Each couple is vastly different and each couple has to strategize their own plan for sticking together during the chaos of having small children. A big part of marriage with small children is actively choosing to invest in your marriage even though it may be hard.
While we couldn’t be any happier to be parents, we greatly miss our time as a couple. Please, know that having a baby does NOT automatically mean you have to sacrifice your marriage or that you will have marital struggles- that is simply not true!
What is marriage after baby really like?
Caring for a baby can feel like one long continuous day that is on loop FOREVER. Okay, maybe that is a little dramatic.
It can feel like everything that you just finished doing, needs to be re-done. Your new baby constantly needs to eat, or have their diaper changed, or take a nap, or take a bath, or be held. Someone once told me that keeping up with the grind of motherhood is like brushing your teeth while eating Oreos. I feel this on a deep level.
So, finally, you put the baby down for bedtime, do the ninja crawl out of their bedroom and plop on the couch exhausted from your day of mom-ing.
Then, you look over to see the love of your life smiling at you and all you can think is, “Can I go to bed now?”.
- We know that a happy marriage grows happy kids.
- We know that we love our spouse.
- BUT, we also know that the baby will wake up in 3 hours for a middle-of-the-night feeding and that at 5 AM the next day we will be awake with our baby.
Is it really possible to enjoy marriage after baby?
Christian Marriage After Baby Tips for New Moms
That’s enough of my rambling – let’s get into these amazing tips from moms who have been there and done that!
Tip 1: Remember That You Are On The Same Team
- When I would start getting upset about something my husband was doing or just overwhelmed in general, my husband would say, “This is all part of my evil plan.” It would help me re-set realizing that he doesn’t have an evil plan and we would get a laugh out of it. -Anna
- Never go to bed angry. I know it’s what everyone says but it’s a rule my husband and I have made. If we are angry at life or each other or whatever it could be we always talk it out and go to bed without weight on our shoulders. -Mikayla
- Intimacy (physical, mental, emotional) is vital for a healthy relationship. It is important to invest in alone time together to foster a relationship that is rich
withcommunication, appreciation, and respect. More than just sex, nurturing intimacy will grow your marriage and your ability to parent harmoniously. -Tiarra
Tip 2: Continue to Date Your Spouse
- Intentional time and “dates”. These dates might even mean takeout on the couch after
babygoes to bed for the night. Take advantage of alone time and make it count. It’s easy to pick up a phone (social media/games/etc) but don’t! Use that time to chat and stay connected with your spouse. -Leah
- Put your husband first (after God). It’s easy with a truly good and Godly man. -Connie, married over 40 years
- Keep dating your spouse. Dates might look different with a new baby:
- it may be a breakfast date and you pop some waffles in the toaster
- or someone picks up take-out and you have a picnic lunch date while the baby sleeps
- or order a pizza and have a movie night at home.
- No matter what you decide to do, just make sure you keep dating each other. The love that the two of you have is what started your family. This relationship will be the one that stands once the babies have grown up and left the nest so continue to build a strong foundation together. -Diane
- Make regular date times an absolute priority! Put them on the calendar in advance, so that busyness doesn’t crowd them out. Rely on your church family for reliable sitters. -Rachael
Tip 3: Let Him Be a Dad
- Our childbirth class instructor separated the mommies and daddies and talked with each of us separately. For the soon to be mommies, she told us that mommies and daddies would do things differently. She said to let the daddies enjoy their new baby and to let them do things their way (even if they put the diaper on
backward) unless they were endangering the baby. This was such sage advice that I definitely took to heart! I’ve had many-a-friend say that their husbands won’t help with “anything” and I’ve seen these same friends nit-pick every little thing (or many things) their husband does. Sometimes it’s best to leave the house for a while and let your husband “learn” how to be a daddy. He’s new at this, too! -Anna
- Praise your hubby! Tell him what an awesome daddy he is. And don’t feel mom-guilt leaving
babywith him to get some me-time. It is good bonding for him and baby! -Cheryl
- Let daddy take some of the work to care for baby. A lot of time as new moms, we just naturally start to do everything for baby- don’t! Include your husband and ask him for help so he feels included. This will help develop family unity rather than him feeling left out of it. -Leah
Date Ideas for a Strong Marriage After Baby
- When our first two daughters were younger we teamed up with two other couples in our Small Group. We would take turns on a Saturday morning; two couples would go on a date while the third couple would watch all of the children then we would rotate. We chose mornings so that everyone was in a good mood and we didn’t need to worry about bed-time, etc. -Anna
- Weather permitting, take a stroll at a local park- it’s free! -Rachael
- Pack a picnic and just drive. You never know what you might find along the way. -Mikayla
- Go out to eat, even if it’s challenging with
baby. Time it while babyis going to be sleeping and enjoy yourselves! It’s worth it. -Cheryl
The Last Thing You Need to Know about Marriage for New Moms
Everything has changed after becoming a new mom, especially, your relationship with your spouse. Talk to your spouse about your needs and express your love to him! Start investing in your marriage after baby one step at a time.
What have you found challenging about marriage after baby?
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