The day you and your husband got married, not only did you have your dream wedding, but you and your husband made those vows to always love one another, in sickness or in health, for richer or poorer, and you know how the rest goes. In other words, your husband and you not only made those marriage vows but were ready to stick to them no matter how tough things got in your marriage. Then you both went on your dream honeymoon!
Whether you went hiking in the Catskills, and stayed in Niagara Falls, or went on a Caribbean or Mediterranean cruise, or if you got married during the northern winter and still decided to venture out on a cruise to Antarctica, you had an amazing time! And that was when you were so madly in love, dreamed about your future kids, and didn’t think that anything could ever stress your marriage out!
That was a blissful time until you went into labor (or if you had a rough pregnancy, the blissful times may have ended at that point). After that darling son or daughter of yours was born, your marriage was immediately put to the test! At that point, you quickly discovered that you and your husband’s needs had to be put on the back burner to take care of that new baby! While you and your husband were on that beautiful honeymoon, the last thing you ever thought that having a baby would create havoc in your marriage, and have the potential to kill it as well.
16 Little To No Bedroom Fun
After your new one is born, you are downright exhausted! You are dealing with sleepless nights whether you are breast or formula feeding. You are having to get up every few hours to feed your new baby because he or she needs to grow and thrive. Having your baby fed, clean and comfortable are the priority now. Therefore your needs, along with your husband’s needs come second. By the time the baby is comfortable, you are going to be exhausted. Hopefully your husband is helping you out in this, and as a result, he is feeling the same way.
That being said, the first thing you are going to want to do is to sleep! And that means any kind of intimacy and sex will be put aside. If your husband isn’t helping you out because he has to be the one to bring home the bacon- and you are the one who is on night and day duty, then you are going to avoid anything sexual with your partner.
The lack of intimacy and sex will certainly stress your marriage, and before you know it, if it continues, you and hubby will end up living like roommates instead of husband and wife. Unless you tell him that sex has to be put on hold until a routine has been developed with the new baby, and if he knows there is a much better chance he will be patient and understand. Otherwise, lack of intimacy in itself is a marriage killer.
15 Fighting About Money
Face it! When your family begins to grow, you will be spending money in ways that you have never imagined before having kids. Maybe you were lucky enough to receive a load of baby gifts whether you had a baby shower or not. Maybe your generous parents bought you a crib or bassinette for the baby. Your friends bought your baby toys, blankets and clothing, so it is possible that you did not lay any money out for the big stuff!
However, diapers, wipes, formula if you decided to feed your baby that way, bottles, and new clothing that you will inevitably need as your baby grows to begin to put a dent into your bank account. Not to mention, you have medical costs to add- you quickly find that your expenses have gone way up after having the baby. That leaves a lot less money for you and your husband. Less disposable income creates more stress in any individual, let alone in a marriage. In order to keep your marriage alive, you must accept that funds will be tighter, and create a budget.
14 Find Each Other Boring
The fact of the matter is after that baby was born, you and your husband had to put your and his needs aside to care for the new member of the family. You are sacrificing sleep, you have no choice but to give up your date nights. Or if you are able to have a few, you have to either have to hire a babysitter (meaning more money spent), or even if a trusted family member like your dear mom can watch the baby- you have to be back by a certain time, when before the baby was in the picture you could be out all night.
All of your discussions revolve around the baby because you both have forgotten to talk about anything else. You will frequently look at one another and wonder “now what?” You don’t know what else to do with one another, and therefore you become quickly bored. The only excitement there is now is whenever the baby cries! During the times the baby is sleeping, spend some time with one another and start talking about the old days before pregnancy. This way you can spark things up again.
13 Shouting Matches All The Time
As mentioned already, a new baby creates plenty of stress! You are going to be incredibly exhausted from having lack of sleep or wondering why your baby hasn’t stopped crying. Your husband feels stressed to work longer hours to bring in more income because money is now very tight. You are both tired, and when anyone is extremely tired, they will lash out!
The next thing you know, you are biting each other’s heads off for trivial or not so trivial reasons. A shouting match begins to happen almost daily, and the next thing you know, the constant fighting is creating a wench in your marriage. When you witnessed your parents fighting while you were growing up, you promised yourself and your then fiance that it wouldn’t happen to you! On your blissful honeymoon, you never thought you would argue with your other half like you are now. But alas, it’s happening, and it’s not good for your marriage. When you feel the need to shout at your partner, take a deep breath and count to 10. This advice is cliche, but it works if you create a habit of it.
12 Dirty Little Secrets
Your marriage life has been turned upside down once the baby came into the picture. You are exhausted, you and your husband are both overworked. You are not spending quality time with one another as a result, and you are desperate to get at least some “me” time when you can. Because your needs have been thrown to the side since your baby’s needs are always coming first, you are going to naturally want to look for any kind of pleasure. For instance, even though your funds are tight more than ever at the moment, you are going to want to do some secret shopping. You know your husband may not approve but you don’t care so you go shopping behind his back anyway. You will find a way to pay off any debt that you accumulate as well.
At the same time, your husband may phone an old girlfriend of his from high school just to catch up on old times behind your back. Even though he has no intention of having anything more than a conversation with her, he knows you would not approve. You both are looking for ways to find any kind of satisfaction, and since you don’t care about getting one another’s approval, you will be accumulating secrets. That is quite detrimental to any marriage because eventually, these secrets leak one way or another. Remember that before you end up doing something you may regret later on.
11 Unresolved Issues Coming Back
Because of the fact that your marriage has been affected in ways that you never anticipated once the baby came, you are going to understandably get on each other’s nerves due to being so short tempered from stress. Therefore, that time when your husband forgot to get the bread on the way home to work when you desperately needed it is still pissing you off. Especially since you were exhausted from dealing with your baby crying all day for various reasons and ended up running out to the supermarket to get the bread anyway. And that time when you accidentally burned your husband’s dinner due to the fact that you were busy changing the baby’s diaper is still pissing him off.
However, because you are both tired, stressed, and busy fighting over other things- you both conveniently avoid discussing past grievances. The next thing you know, you both will be having plenty of grievances that will not be voiced. Therefore, no resolution will ever happen. It is always best to put everything out on the table even if a fight happens. Unresolved conflicts are poisonous for any marriage.
10 Lack Of Appreciation
You are the one who is getting up every few hours with the baby in the night, and sacrificing your sleep. You are the one who is feeding the baby and cleaning up after him or her. You are taking care of diaper changes, and cleaning up spit up and constantly doing laundry. Your husband doesn’t get how tiring that is for you. He doesn’t appreciate the fact that you are tending to the baby that you and he both created 24/7.
However, he feels even more stressed to work harder and bring home more bacon, and on the flip side, he doesn’t feel you appreciate the fact that he is working his hind end off to financially support the family. Plenty of your conflicts are a result of the fact that both of you feel like you have been taken for granted. Therefore, this lack of appreciation is terrible for any marriage, regardless of the reason! In order to stop this issue from escalating, thank your partner every now and then for putting in his part, and he must do the same to you.
9 The Cold Shoulder
Whenever there is a stressful event happening in your marriage, such as a new baby being born- especially if it is the first, upheavals will happen. You and your other half will be affected in ways that neither of you expected, and therefore you will be facing an insurmountable amount of stress.
Therefore, lack of intimacy and too much exhaustion will make you and him fly off the handle more often. You will be fighting over things that may seem trivial, but at the same time, you will hold onto past grudges. As discussed previously, neither of you will feel appreciated. At the same time, neither of you will be motivated to express your needs to one another. The reason for that is because both of you will assume that the other will listen and take your needs seriously.
Not to mention, only the baby’s needs are coming first anyway. When you are holding onto grudges without discussing it, and you are not expressing your wants and needs- before you know it your communication will become non-existent. In order to keep a marriage healthy, you need to have proper communication!
8 Disrespect Each Other
Because of the fact that you and your partner’s needs have been put aside to make sure that the new baby’s needs are met, you will seek ways of finding pleasure behind one another’s back. As mentioned previously, you and your partner will begin to do things secretly. Secrets are one sign of showing disrespect for one another.
However, due to the feeling of lack of appreciation on both sides, and due to having poor communication- both of you will end up doing things that will deliberately piss one another off. For instance, if he needs to ask you a serious question, but you are on the phone with your friend, and you purposely are staying on the phone just to annoy him- that is a sign of disrespect.
On the flip side, if your husband knows how much you hate the smell of his shaving cream but lathers his face with that particular scented shaving cream anyway, that is also a sign of disrespect. Disrespect comes from not feeling appreciated, past resentments and poor communication. Before you know it, the more you disrespect your spouse, the more he or she will hate you- if that doesn’t stop and start finding a way to value and respect one another again, divorce may be around the corner.
7 Using Sarcasm And Making Digs
Before you know it, that resentment towards your husband that has been building up and in his vase, vice versa will certainly escalate. Because of the fact that your needs have not been met at all since the baby was born, and same with his, you will end up finding a way to find relief and a little bit of pleasure at the expense of your spouse.
If you secretly disliked your mother in law and if she has a bad habit of chewing her food with her mouth open, you will find yourself throwing nasty words about his mother and her bad habit at your husband often.
Even if your mother in law hasn’t bothered you at all lately, you will still find a way to insult his beloved mother in front of him. And if you happen to have struggled in a subject like math back in school, your husband may throw that at you out of nowhere as well. Lack of communication and fighting over trivial or even over serious things are bad enough in a marriage. When you throw making digs and sarcasm in the mix, that can be a marriage destroyer if this behavior is not controlled.
6 Unmet Expectations
You knew that your married life would change once the baby came into the picture, but you underestimated by how much. Who could blame you since no one could ever prepare you for how much a baby will change your married life, let alone your own! You were let down once the baby arrived because the amount of work did not turn out to be the way you expected. Your husband also fell off of the pedestal because your expectations of him were high, and same for him. You definitely fell off of his pedestal. You expected your husband to help out more than he has and he is disappointed that you have your limitations. Because the expectations that you had of one another were not met on both sides, that is a letdown. Therefore, unmet expectations are poisonous for any marriage, and many reality checks need to be made as a result.
5 Lack Of Empathy
Since the baby’s arrival, both of you are exhausted, stressed, resentful, angry and are not communicating your needs properly as a result. You also have shown signs of disrespect by doing things on the side secretly, or doing and saying things to purposely upset and annoy one another. The bottom line is this upheaval in your marriage caused you to not give a hoot about one another’s feelings.
You don’t care that your husband is upset over something you said. He doesn’t care that his actions angered you. Neither of you cares about one another’s feelings anymore, and this lack of empathy is certainly a kiss of death to anyone’s marriage. If you want to salvage your marriage, you are going to have to find the time and a way to express why his actions have upset you. And at the same time, you have to be open by listening to his grievances about what you have said or done. If you want to save your marriage, you will have to both find ways to respect and care about each other again.
3 Lack Of Respite
Before you had your baby, you and your husband had not only more time to enjoy eating out and movies, but you had more disposable income. Now that your time is consumed by the baby’s needs, and only by his or her needs- you have no time for yourselves, let alone for having dates again. And that money that is going towards the baby, and the rest for home expenses and taxes- you have very little left over. This lack of respite is one huge factor behind you and your husband constantly biting each other’s heads off.
Unfortunately, lack of money as mentioned before is a huge stressor. If neither you and your husband don’t have any time to spend with one another away from the baby, you will be stressed and that will hurt your marriage. If possible, have a trusted family member watch the baby while you and your husband go to a fast food joint and have a walk after, just to spend some much needed time together.
Between the upheavals and other stresses that a baby brings, on top of hormonal changes you have gone through after giving birth, depression frequently happens. In fact, depression after giving birth goes beyond the well-known baby blues that disappears within 2 weeks of birth. That kind of depression is postpartum depression, and symptoms can range from losing interest in anything that you once enjoyed, only wanting to sleep, changes in appetite and weight, constantly crying, and wanting nothing to do with the baby.
In severe cases, thoughts of harming yourself, your husband and your baby can happen! Your husband will go through a depression too due to the stress of the sudden changes alone. However, if depression is not treated it can escalate and ruin the marriage could be the very least of what could happen. If you are experiencing signs of postpartum depression, you must call your doctor and receive the help that you need before it escalates into something severe.
The fact of the matter is, a new baby’s arrival is incredibly stressful for new parents. However, even once the baby is starting to sleep through the night, and a new routine is set, and the new parents are used to their new roles- the stress just continues on. The baby may get to a point of beginning to smile, but if colic sets in that is a new challenge that new parents will be facing. Then will come teething, and then the first time the baby gets sick, and so on.
Stress from kids never ends, it just evolves and changes like they do. And if problems that started happening in the marriage after birth haven’t been resolved such as lack of communication, then these problems will just fester no matter how much the kids grow and become more independent. That being said, the earlier problems that are presented are resolved, the better you and your husband will be able to resolve conflicts and communicate with one another later on. This is the only way that your marriage can be salvaged.
Sources: Babycenter.com, Parents.com, DailyMail.co.uk