The early weeks of pregnancy are fragile—and confusing. Here, the answers to your questions.
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Marriage saver Change your expectations about time spent together; instead of dates, think errands, Orbuch says. Get haircuts or go grocery shopping together. No need for a sitter.
>Neither of you wants the night shift.
What’s behind it Your husband says he needs his sleep so he can be well rested for work. You argue that you can’t take care of the baby all day if you’ve been up half the night.
Marriage saver Ask your husband to get up with the baby when he’s not facing a stressful day at work, or sleep in shifts. And while it might seem extreme, consider sleeping in separate beds until the baby starts sleeping through the night. That’s what Michelle Cantor, a mother of two in Huntington Woods, Mich., and her husband did. “Why should both parents get up?” she says. Because she was breastfeeding, she would pump before going to bed so that her husband could give the baby a bottle of breast milk during his shift.
>He wants sex, you want sleep.
What’s behind it You are so distracted and fatigued that rest becomes more appealing than romance. Plus, the near-constant skin-on-skin contact that goes with caring for a newborn can leave you
wanting space from your household—not sex.
Marriage saver Scheduling sex might not sound romantic, but it helps to keep a connection and spark alive. “We’ve set ourselves an informal schedule whereby we try to make love or at least have some sort of intimate contact once a weekend,” says Christine Burgi, a mother of two in Aberdeen, N.J. “I know that once I’m no longer bone-weary, our love life will return to normal.”
Beth Meeks says her husband is learning that the more work he does around the house, the better their relationship is. “If I do all the chores in the evening, I’m too tired to fool around,” she says. “But if he helps me, we go to bed together and usually have great sex.”