Most people want to be remembered for the good things they've done or for the good person they are. Women most often want to be remembered for being the good daughter, sister, mother and wife. Practically everyone wants to be remembered fondly in their relationships with their loved ones. Not only is it unpretentious, it’s also cements the bond they have to those near and dear to their heart.
But sometimes we don’t exactly consider the possibility that it’s actually possible not to be great at all those things. A woman can be the model daughter, for instance, but still be a terrible sister. And another woman can be the ideal mom, but a bad wife.
The latter, in fact, is one of the things that worries many women. Motherhood, after all, demands plenty of love and care and attention towards the little one and her husband. And given that there are only so many hours in the day, there is always the possibility that they may not provide the same love, care and attention that they used to give to their husbands.
This can be tough for some. Many women, after all, fear that their husbands will get neglected, and that they might lose interest in the relationship, possibly run off with a younger woman. However, chances are that the women who worry about this are probably the ones with the least chance of becoming a terrible wife. They’re worrying about their relationship, after all, because it matters to them!
However, despite many good intentions, it’s important to remember that there may be some cases in which the husband-wife relationship may suffer, especially right after having a baby. The good news is that in most cases, this 'husband neglect' is temporary or, at least, reversible with effort and attention.
15 She Devalues Date Night
Having a date night, or any scheduled time dedicated to the relationship, is important. This opens up a time for the pair to just enjoy each other and, perhaps, keep updated on things they may not be discussed on a daily basis.
It may sound a bit mechanical and unromantic, but sometimes it’s the only way to guarantee that the couple still have time for each other in the midst of their busy schedules plus the baby. So it’s kind-of a big thing in maintaining that marital spark.
One sign that the relationship may be veering towards terrible territory is when it begins to get forgotten, pushed in the background of the couple’s busy schedule. Missing it a few times, perhaps due to a blip at work or the babysitter calling in sick is fine, of course. But when time together loses its value, the couple might need to consider tweaking their priorities to also include time together.
14 Nags Non-Stop About The Chores
Let’s admit it: chores can be a marriage-breaker. This becomes clearest after childbirth, when there’s simply so much to do. Trust us when we say that as soon as possible after finding out about the pregnancy, discuss dividing the chores immediately.
In fact, it should have been done prior to the start of the marriage or cohabitation, although it’s usually seldom a big problem then. Also, it’s best to check with each other to see if the arrangement is still fair periodically. If mom is feeling overwhelmed, she’s bound to become resentful and feign being ‘too busy’ for him.
This is because it’s all too easy to resent each other when the workload is way too high and the other is not perceived as contributing their fair share. A prearranged plan can help ease the couple through the worst of it, and constant communication can help them iron out any kinks. It also helps them determine if they need a bit of help in the chore department temporarily.
13 Doesn't Take Any “Me” Time
When mom doesn’t devote time for a little self-care, chances are that the relationship will suffer as well. For stay-at-home moms, this often comes in the form of hanging out at home too much. After all, this can get tedious, even for the most dedicated mother.
She must take time off and relax every once in awhile. Perhaps she can take on a hobby, or spend a weekend at the spa to do so. In any case, this does also require hubby’s support.
Working moms (and dads), on the other hand, may have a different challenge entirely. Getting busy with work and ensuring that she has enough time for the kids can eat up her schedule, not leaving enough time for other things.
This is where it’s extremely important to get help so that she can free her time enough to do the self-care she needs. After all, as awesome as mothers are, we’re still only human.
12 She's Often Jealous
Whether on the part of the dad or the mom, jealousy, especially in excess, is definitely a relationship deal-breaker. Don’t get us wrong. Sometimes it’s normal to feel tinges of jealousy here and there, especially when there’s reason to. However, there are times when it just veers off into an unhealthy path.
If either mom or dad is jealous of other people in their partner’s life, even the baby, it’s probably time to sit down and discuss these feelings before what’s left of the relationship flies out the window. After all, trust is an essential component in any healthy relationship.
And whether there’s an actual cause for mistrust, or if it’s the result of unreasonable emotions, the lack of it can result in problems between mom and dad. A jealous relationship is controlling and bad for either partner’s growth. As such, counselling may be needed in order to save the marriage.
11 Isn't Interested In Being Intimate
Of course, it’s unreasonable to expect that mom can have sex immediately after childbirth. After all, she needs to heal down there. It usually takes about six weeks for mom’s nether regions to heal enough to be able to have sex. Although depending on the damage caused by childbirth, it may take more time. It’s also worth considering, of course, that a couple does not need penetrative sex to have fun in bed.
Long periods of time without this sort of intimacy can put a strain on the relationship. And it’s usually harder on dad than it is on mom. Mom may not feel turned on as much or as often as she used to, considering the fact that post-pregnancy hormones will tune down her libido in exchange for the feeling of wanting to nurture her child.
Because of this, it’s important for the couple to take these needs in consideration and talk about them in order to avoid problems.
10 She Communicates Less
Relationships, by definition, are the state in which two people relate or connect to each other. Needless to say, in order to maintain that connection, communication is needed. After all, while we love to point out that people who live with each other can communicate almost intuitively, there is still a lot that they may not be able to say to each other without words.
Human beings aren’t mind readers, and it’s damaging to a relationship to assume that the other knows what’s on their mind.
When communication is lacking or absent in a relationship, chances are that other problems will begin to emerge over time. After all, how on earth is mom to know that dad expects some intimacy when he comes home if he doesn’t tell her so? Or how is dad to know that she expects him to be home early today if she didn’t say?
And when either person refuses to communicate, that’s a pretty solid sign that the marriage is going downhill.
9 Plays The Blame Game
Blaming each other unreasonably for everyday problems, whether this is expressed or not, can damage a relationship. Of course, there may be the occasional casual joke about how “you put me through this childbirth.” But harboring resentment because it feels like the other is responsible for the difficulties of everyday life is dangerous.
This can range from blaming the partner for the increased responsibility of parenting or to blaming the marriage from preventing one to reach the full potential of life. This is unhealthy because it transfers nearly all of the blame to someone else, rather than taking ownership of the part one has played in the problem and then seeking a solution for it.
When unnecessary blame starts to pop up in a relationship, it may be worth talking about it or seeking professional help. It may not seem a big deal right away, but in the long run it can slowly grate away at a relationship until there is only a sliver left.
8 Prevents Dad's Participation
One of the most seemingly harmless, but actually glaring sign that the marriage will be in danger is if the mom keeps dad from participating in the baby’s care. Of course, this is given that the couple have an otherwise healthy marriage and that dad is trustworthy. Because if dad has a history of abuse or other problems, it’s probably better off that mom keeps the kids (and perhaps herself) away from him.
However, many moms (and sometimes dads) do play into the clueless dad stereotype. He may seem like he’s going to drop the baby at any minute or not employing the proper bottle feeding technique. And while it can be tempting to just take the baby away and do it for oneself, the best solution is to teach him how.
If he’s willing to learn, mom will certainly not regret it. After all, failing to trust him with child care is just another form of mistrust and needs to be addressed.
7 She Has Body Image Issues
Every woman has body image issues and most can manage their marriage just fine, thank you very much. But those with extreme issues may not do too well after childbirth. After all, bodily changes during pregnancy and childbirth are pretty drastic. They often convince even the most body positive women that they are somehow unsexy.
And it can be pretty darn traumatic for women who don’t exactly have a healthy relationship with their body.
As such, these body issues may affect the relationship. Sure, the hubby can help by making her feel wanted and sexy. But if the issues are far deeper than the need for reassurance, she may need counselling. This is especially if she decides to engage in unhealthy behaviors such as crash diets during or shortly after pregnancy.
Often, body images issues aren’t a problem with the body itself, but in the way the person thinks about their body. That’s where help is needed.
6 Feels Worthless
After childbirth, there are quite a few women who end up unreasonably thinking of themselves as worthless. It may be easy to dismiss these feelings and consider them an overreaction. However, this negative emotion could very well be a sign of the postpartum blues or, worse, postpartum depression.
Now, we hope this doesn’t get depressed moms to think that they’re somehow necessarily terrible wives. However, depression in its essence can negatively affect relationships, most especially marriage. It can lead to the sufferer isolating herself or projecting her fears to the point that her husband is affected.
The most important thing to do when this happens is to get help. A good support system in the form of family and friends and, yes, the husband can help mom get back on her feet. In addition, it might be necessary for her to seek a counsellor or a psychiatrist to help her deal with depression.
5 She Cuts Her Friends Off
Another major sign that the marriage is going to suffer is if mom begins to get cut off from her family and friends. This sort of social isolation may also be the sign of postpartum depression. However, it can also be the consequence of the increased responsibility of parenthood.
Looking after a newborn can, after all, take up a lot of her time. In the worst of cases, this could be due to an unhealthy, jealous relationship in which her husband literally keeps her from interacting with other people. But for a woman to ignore her other relationships in favor of being there for the baby 24/7, it isn’t a healthy way to look at her life.
In any case, it’s not a great idea. There’s a dangerous misconception nowadays that loving someone necessarily means that person should be able to fulfill all one’s social needs. “You’re all I need” may sound romantic, but in reality it’s a load of hogwash. It’s virtually impossible for one person to rely on another person exclusively for everything. Everyone needs friends. Marriage and childbirth is no excuse.
4 Not Getting Enough Sleep
Like many others on this list, sleep deprivation may sound harmless enough. However, studies have consistently shown that it can have a negative impact on behavior, and also on relationships. Not getting enough sleep can make feelings of depression or anxiety worse. When either partner is not sleeping well for long periods of time, expect the marriage to suffer.
It’s amazing just how many problems this can cause, considering that the solution is very simple: get some sleep. Sadly, however, we live in such a work-obsessed society that taking a break is often equated with slacking off. Add that to a newborn who wakes the parents up at the most inappropriate times and you have a potential disaster.
However, there are many time-tested tricks and techniques to get enough sleep even with a job and a newborn. The sleep-deprived parent might find it worth trying out some of those tricks to see what works for them, ultimately saving their relationship!
3 Feels Rushed Into Marriage
Although this applies only to special cases, the circumstances of the childbirth can have a big impact on whether the marriage lasts or not. Mostly, this is when a young couple becomes pregnant and are then compelled, whether by family or social norms, to get married. Depending on where you are and how you grew up, this may sound either completely alien or totally normal.
Some of these kinds of marriages do work out, but many others fail. Many couples get into a relationship without considering the idea of children, after all. When a child does happen, they are often unprepared about just how their relationship will change because of parenthood.
There is a learning curve in transitioning from a relationship done for fun and excitement, to one that must be maintained because of obligation. Not everyone can deal with this, especially when at least one person in the marriage is still emotionally immature.
2 Believes They're Incompatible
Issues in the relationship are not going to go away just because there’s a baby in the picture. In fact, the baby is probably going to accentuate some of these incompatibilities. And we don’t mean incompatibilities in a sense that he prefers pizza and she prefers fries.
We mean those that can run deep if unaddressed, such as if she derives affection from compliments and praise whereas he’s stingy with words. One may wonder why the couple is together, but they say opposites attract.
However, after a baby and all the additional strain that brings, even small things that may have seemed “cute” pre-baby, will become major issues post-baby. We strongly advise addressing these issues before deciding to have a baby.
Fortunately, it’s easy nowadays to get a good marriage counsellor. Sadly, however, many couples believe that getting counselling is only for those with huge problems. Nothing could be further from the truth. A good counsellor can help detect problems before they pop up, as well as solve hidden conflict that the couple simply did not bother to address.
1 She Has Violent Outbursts
If one or the other partner is emotionally unstable, things may get complicated after childbirth. After all, the postpartum period can be a roller coaster of emotions. A predisposition to emotional extremes can exaggerate that and result in tension in the relationship. This is particularly if these mood swings involve anger and violent behavior.
While we can’t avoid bringing our own baggage into a relationship, this is the kind of baggage that definitely needs to be dealt with as soon as possible.
We usually see men as the abuser, but it does happen the other way around, and while mom may have had her anger under control prior to the baby’s arrival, the additional stress of caring for a newborn can make her lose control and become violent toward her husband.