Having a child is one of life’s greatest moments. When you’ve found a partner who you adore and you’re both ready and eager to turn that love into a tiny heartbeat, life couldn’t be better, right?

And just like that, two suddenly become three; but once all of the newborn excitement starts to mellow, there is often a shift in our relationship with our significant other. How can we cope when our relationship takes a hit?

Lacking a Good Night’s Rest

The biggest shift in your household after childbirth will be the amount of sleep you and your partner are getting. We all know how much a good night’s sleep can affect our mental state, so with the lack thereof for a new mother and father, it’s understandable if you become crabby easily.

Although the only real remedy for sleep deprivation is, well, sleep, keeping mindful that your partner is going through it at the moment just as you are, can ensure that the peace is kept. Even though one of you is likely to be getting more sleep than the other, try and be as empathetic as possible. And of course, encourage each other to take naps when you can.

Social Life Shortage

Before having a child, our social lives are booming. We go for drinks with friends, out to dinners after a day in the office and take little weekend getaways spontaneously. This young and carefree lifestyle takes a big slap in the face when we become parents. But it’s not all downhill. These aspects of your life will come back, although maybe not as spontaneously and on a whim as before.

The loss of your social life when becoming a parent can take a toll on your relationship. Your partner may become agitated at the fact that you aren’t the adventurous, outgoing couple that you were previously and relationship dynamics can shift.

“Well, What Did You DO All Day?”

Whether you are working a 9-5 to support your new family or staying home to look after your little one, both roles have their challenges.

It’s easy to assume you’ve bagged the hard end of the bargain when your partner is home all day to look after a newborn, and vice versa when your other half doesn’t run to help you with the cooking as soon as they arrive home from work, but communication is key.

Understanding that one role can be just as difficult as another, and expressing challenges you face day to day can dodge negativity and diminish assumptions that being a stay at home parent is a walk in the park.

Shifting Affection

When you bring a baby into the world, everything revolves around them. It is easy to pour yourself into being the best parent you can be, but your shift in direction of affection can often be at your partner’s expense. Mental and physical attraction can decline after childbirth but you’ll find other ways to be intimate with your partner.

Postnatal Depression can affect both males and females, so it is vital to communicate with your significant other and seek professional help when needed. Although parenthood is a fresh and sometimes scary experience, it is an amazing experience worth every minute.