Once upon a time, it was just the two of you, holding hands whilst out taking a romantic stroll, gazing lovingly at one another over dinner at an exclusive restaurant. You enjoyed making love all over the house and regularly indulged in it. Then a squirming, loud and demanding little bundle of joy arrived at your home. Your new roommate and head of the household for the foreseeable future – your newborn baby.
No matter how much you think you are prepared for the arrival of your baby, when he or she actually arrives it hits like a ton of bricks. Life as you know it will never be the same again. You no longer hold hands when you go for a romantic stroll, your hands are otherwise engaged pushing a pram, or fishing around the oversize changing bag searching for wipes, a dummy, or Ragtag the button-eyed bunny.
Never mind gazing lovingly over at one another over dinner, just having time to re-heat that stew and eat your food while it’s still lukewarm is an achievement. And as for making love all over the house, that’s been replaced by cat naps. You lean languidly against the wall while the kettle boils, (coffee is your friend when your baby decides 3am is the perfect time for a play), closing your eyes for a moment of respite.
Romance and making love might be the last things on your mind as you try and adjust to life with a baby in tow, but finding time for one another is essential too. Your health and active life are important – keeping the spark alive is hard, but worth the effort.
Don’t Get Hung Up on Your Looks
Post-baby weight can make you feel a little unattractive, and lack of sleep can leave you feeling like you are not looking your best. While you might feel very self-conscious about your body, your partner will be more interested in celebrating the amazing things your body has just managed to do – giving birth is an incredible feat!
Although you feel you might not look the part, try and embrace your inner goddess and fuller, softer figure. You will regain your shape, just don’t put too much pressure on yourself. It would be a shame to shy away from intimacy just because you have a stretch mark or two!
Take a Break
When a baby has a nap, it’s tempting to feel like you should be catching up on chores. There are romper suits to wash, a floor that needs a hoover and potatoes that need peeling for tonight’s dinner. Although you can’t just abstain from all the house stuff (someone has to do it) don’t get caught up in a cycle of being busy every minute. Remember your baby is going to be waking up for milk regularly day and night.
That’s going to equal a lot of lost sleep. When a baby takes a nap, put down the dishcloth and get some shut-eye yourself. You need work, rest and play in your life – your baby is a delight but will certainly add to the workload, get your rest with regular naps and the play part? Well if you manage to conserve some energy you can use it up having some nocturnal fun with your significant other!
Use Your Imagination
Making love isn’t just about intercourse, penetration isn’t the be all and end all. There are plenty of other things you can do to demonstrate how much you love one another. How about a full kiss on the lips (go mad and use tongues)! How often have you walked up to your partner and passionately kissed them for no other reason than you want to?
Love letters may be a little outdated but how about a racy text or e-mail? Tell your partner what you would like to do to them (when you get a moment) and let them know what you would like them to do to you.
Grandparents, aunties, and uncles, best friends – they all want to play a part in baby’s first year – so let them! You might not be ready to leave your little one in the early days, but you could set the table, light some candles and order a takeout. Let Grandma cover the night shift and enjoy some much-needed alone time with your partner. It doesn’t matter what you talk about, just relish being together and remember that you are a couple as well as parents.