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Life As A First Time Parent

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This topic contains 1 reply, has 2 voices, and was last updated by  Tifanny 2 years, 4 months ago.

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  • #6593

    Stormi
    Participant

    The new stresses that flood into new parents’ lives seem unending. You are now dealing with identifying your new roles as mom and dad. This happens at a time when you most likely had barely gotten the hang of being husband and wife. You are also learning the new skills of infant care and parenting. And you are physically drained by the never-ending need for attention from your little one. All this is mixed with increased conflicts with your spouse over role responsibilities. You may feel a lack of emotional and physical support, and changes in your sexual relationship. Top that all off with increased financial demands, and you have the perfect formula for a major drop in marital satisfaction. Actually, research shows that there is a significant drop in perceived marital satisfaction. There is an increase in marital conflicts after the birth of the first child. This drop in satisfaction is usually greater for the wife and is still present at the end of the first year. There are two major threats to the marital bond, and they begin in the first quarter of parenting. What are they? Lack of time and lack of energy. There are feelings of grief at a loss of couple time, and feelings of disconnectedness from your spouse. There are also feelings of jealousy about the amount of time and attention baby is receiving, and the loss of energy all cause a great shift in the intimacy pattern. If the couple does not recognize these threats and deal with them openly, they may begin to feel even more isolated from each other.

    #6609

    Tifanny
    Participant

    Not only is a couple’s perception of time changing, but the actual amount of time that they can choose what to do with decreases tremendously. A couple will have only about one-third as much discretionary time after the baby is born as they had before their first child. With the overwhelming demands of caring for a new baby added to all the requirements of daily living already present, something is going to have to give. And unfortunately, that “something” is usually the marriage, and more specifically —the spouse. After all, isn’t he or she big enough to take care of himself or herself? It is easy to let the other supposedly independent adult in the house take a backseat to the crying baby and just about everything else. The dishes are not going to wash themselves, and the laundry isn’t going to fold itself, but we convince ourselves that the marriage is going to grow itself. Of course, this is not true. We must work on reestablishing priorities. The new stresses that flood into new parents’ lives seem unending. You are now dealing with identifying your new roles as mom and dad. This happens at a time when you most likely had barely gotten the hang of being husband and wife. You are also learning the new skills of infant care and parenting. And you are physically drained by the never-ending need for attention from your little one. All this is mixed with increased conflicts with your spouse over role responsibilities. You may feel a lack of emotional and physical support, and changes in your sexual relationship.

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