How Our Relationship Changed After Kids
For my husband and I, having children changed everything.
It changed the way we acted, the way we reacted, the way we ate, the way we slept, heck probably even the way we breathed.
When we had children, nothing was the same; including our relationship.
In my opinion, the toughest time was during the first year after my daughter was born. Neither of us knew what we were doing, and we were scrambling to find our footing in the parenting world; all whilst surviving on little to no sleep.
One of the things that was hard for us, was dealing with pressure from other people to be, and act a certain way, as parents.
Some people thought that once we had kids, our lives wouldn’t change much. They said “don’t you let that child rule your life” or “you can still do the same stuff before you had kids”.
The pressure to be a certain way, was overwhelming at times. Especially because it went against my own instinct.
During those first six months as a new Mum, I struggled big time. I struggled massively to breastfeed. My body didn’t feel like my own. Sleep was something you did when you were dead… And then my baby was an unpredictable, spilly, sleep-fighter.
During this time, I also had undiagnosed post-natal depression. I was diagnosed officially when our first child was 6 months old.
Because my husband didn’t understand what it was like for me – this was where a lot of issues came into play between us. Also sleep deprivation is a first class mind f**k. It makes everything seem worse than it really is. Small issues became big ones.
A lot of our disagreements were basically because neither of us could see the other person’s position – we just didn’t understand what it was like for each other. I used to cry a lot because I wanted my husband so badly to know how I felt. Because I knew once he did, he would finally understand.
We also fought over parenting decisions, and the way we raised our kids. Even though my husband and I are pretty much on the same page as people, we didn’t realise how differently we would be when it came to raising the kids.
For the most part we communicate after the “issue” but sometimes we air our differences in front of the kids. Obviously it’s not ideal but it does happen.
Obviously as the first year progressed, we became more like flat mates. As I’ve explained in my The Flatmate Situation post .. it’s just what happened. Even now, 4 years into this parenting gig, we are a lot like flatmates. We realise that things will change, but for now we are just going with it.
That first year was by far, the hardest. Our relationship was tested, and still is to this day, by our new role as parents. As I said above, we were still finding our footing and trying to figure out what we were doing. Both of us.
Although it was tough, I feel closer to my husband after this time, because I knew if we could get through that, we could get through anything.
We still struggle every single day, because parenting isn’t easy. However we have so much more knowledge now. We know more about each other as human beings, and we have a little more insight into what each other are like.