When Baby Makes 3
Here's your chance to be a fly on the wall as three couples and a family therapist explore some of the common fears and issues expectant parents deal with. Plus a quiz to find out if your relationship is baby-ready.
He's Concerned There Won't Be A Balance Between Being Parents And Being A Couple.
Josh: I'm afraid of not having any time for romance after the baby is born, worried we won't set aside time to go out alone together and keep things interesting. I've talked to couples who swore never to have help because they don't want to miss a single wonderful moment of their baby's life, but I think there has to be a balance.
Dr. Peterson: You're correct--the couple's relationship is the garden in which children grow. That relationship is like a plant: If you don't water it regularly, it dies. This is why it's so important to carve out time to be alone together and to be romantic. Even if you're breastfeeding, you can go out for 2 to 2 1/2 hours if you have someone you can trust to care for the baby.
When you have children, three things can happen: You can not have room for them in your relationship; you can have room for children and your relationship; or you can have room for children only and not your relationship. Guess which one is balanced?
Marina: I worry about neglecting intimacy too. The longer you go without it, the harder it is to get it back.
Dr. Peterson: That's really true for physical intimacy as well. Besides being tired, new mothers can get "touched out" taking care of a baby, especially if they're breastfeeding. So it's natural for a couple's sex life to decrease in frequency after they have a baby, but it's important to keep it alive. You just have to plan for it because there's so little time for spontaneity anymore. It doesn't sound very romantic, but that's the way it is.