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Have a Baby, Lose a Husband? No Way!

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Guest blogger Jill Simonian: Throughout my pregnancy, my mom friends warned me to not get too swept away in "Newborn Land" and ignore my husband once our baby arrived. Never did it cross my mind that he might ignore me!

father playing with baby
For the first few weeks after our little girl joined us, I felt like I could count on one hand the number of times that my husband even looked at me. Every single ounce of his attention was aimed at the baby! As much as I love my darling daughter, I will admit to feeling a bit envious of her ... and a little peeved and confused at my husband's behavior!

I'm not suggesting that babies shouldn't get more attention than adults (they should),but as someone who went through quite an ordeal to bring another person into this world, I started feeling very dispensable. Was I only a baby-maker and nothing else? "Now that she's had the baby ... who needs her?"

As much as we were enjoying our little girl, I suddenly felt like I didn't know my husband anymore! Who was this person, and did he notice that I was also in the room?Very immature, I know. I also realize how potentially incendiary it is to talk about it out loud. What new mom gets huffy that her baby is sucking away all the attention from the other parent? That's CRAZY. Maybe my feelings were provoked by lack of sleep, adjusting hormones or my tender C-section stitch, but they sure felt real ... and I HATED and DESPISED that I was feeling these things in the first place.

In my defense (and I realize I've got to make a good one here), my husband and I experienced a beyond-blissful first year of marriage before Baby came along. Is this when the honeymoon ends? Damn. But I decided that our newlywed happiness was not going to disappear without a fight.

Although just a few weeks had passed, it was time to restore balance in our marriage.If I passively allowed our lack of quality interaction to continue, two weeks would quickly have turned into one month, which would then have morphed into one year, and so on and so on. I saw a glimpse of how easy it is to forget about yourself and your spouse once a newborn arrives. There is a time to marvel and enjoy your newborn, but there is also a time to remind yourself that you and your husband were here first.

In a panic, here's how I conquered this predicament between diaper changes (with the help of a lot of coffee and inexplicable adrenaline): I shaved my legs, did my hair and put on makeup and cute clothes at least a few days out of the week. I smiled more (very 1950's housewife-ish of me). I cooked a fresh dinner three nights, instead of plopping down a frozen meal for us. I popped open a few bottles of wine. I reignited my silly habit of sneaking up behind my husband and squeezing his bum. I thought of interesting topics to bring up in conversation that had nothing to do with the baby. Most importantly, I got bossy and told him that we are not allowed to ignore each other just because this adorable little bundle of joy is now living with us.

As juvenile as my methods were, they actually worked! I am back in love with my husband, he seems to find me cute and interesting again ... and no one is envious of the baby! New moms: Don't let the balance of your marriage completely jump the track once Baby arrives. It is an adjustment that takes time, but you must keep your relationship intact, close and personal from the minute Baby is born. It takes conscious thought, effort and energy that you don't have with a newborn, but commit to adjusting quickly in your own personalized way. You will love Baby even more (and hopefully be better parents in the long run) if you remember that your relationship comes first. Next up for us? Date night. All in baby steps .... :)

Moms, share your stories ... or tell me I'm wrong.

next: Study Shows Cell Phones May Harm Unborn Kids!
21 comments so far | Post a comment now
Agnes December 8, 2010, 7:42 AM

Yea same happened to me, some men are just so immature.

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Cala December 8, 2010, 7:58 AM

Wow, Agnes, did you even read the article?

KS December 8, 2010, 8:09 PM

The balance was definitely shifted for a bit but we slowly found ways to connect as just husband and wife. Well honestly we always did and there was no jealousy. If we needed couple time we talked to one another and came up with a plan. We still sometimes feel like were are sneaking around our own house.

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