Tips For A Strong Marriage & Relationship After Baby

Tips For A Strong Marriage & Relationship After Baby

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I like to test couples with taking turns yeah so if you know the partner is planning it one week well then it’s on her the next week can you say that to my husband if I plan one time you the next time we can talk yeah hello everyone welcome to fam for all moms my name is Shahrzad this is Susan and our beautiful guest of the day this is dr. Elissa Berlin a perinatal psychologist and I’m so excited that you’re here we have Lyme to discuss it’s so exciting that you’re here because I feel like this topic you guys we’re talking about how to keep the fire alive when you become a parent because that’s very specific right and and I feel like that’s something that I really need some help with yeah right now so I’m excited that you’re here thank you and I’m so excited to be here and you know what it’s the kind of thing that we need help at every phase along the way especially after having that first baby because it kicks us in the pants in a way that we just weren’t ready for yeah let’s start with what you do what is a perinatal psychologist so I get to do a lot of different things and what I love about my job is that I’m really working with families and couples in the trenches of having a baby so I work with couples you know in an individual psychotherapeutic kind of environment sometimes I’ll work with just mom or just the partner we do a lot of one on one helping to ideally mitigate postpartum related illnesses okay and a lot of work to prepare for what’s bringing that baby into that household is gonna look like I created a workshop called the afterbirth plan workshop mmm and again it’s something that I encourage couples to do during their second trimester because this idea that we can’t prepare for what having a baby is gonna look like and the impact on our relationship it is false okay there’s a lot that we really can do it’s like setting those expectations before that way you’re not surprised by all of it right right so accurate expectations you know so often people are either willing to give you the hallmark perspective and they’re gonna be amazing and blissful right and there’s elements of that that’s true right or there’s the doom and gloom people who say you’ll never sleep again and you’re never gonna go out again and sex forget that that’s out the window right if we can like you were saying have some accurate expectations about what happens when we have a baby for example it’s normal for couples two weeks to decrease in their satisfaction after a baby is born a distraction normal and I’ll use the analogy all the time like we don’t wait for a fire to be blazing to say gosh how was I supposed to get out of the building right what was that fire drill that I was supposed to you know kind of you know figure out and use for that that evacuation we have all that plan beforehand right so why would we do it differently with having a baby yeah my god you’re so smart it makes almost too much than fat you’re like why didn’t we think about this before so wait let’s let’s start with step one then show a couple finds out that they’re pregnant then they what contact you I don’t have to be step one okay all right you know I’m impactful and I’m a part of the process but they can enjoy the moment for a few minutes okay okay and then so you’re saying like in some time like around second trimester maybe even third trimester start to get prepared right you know when you’re noticing that you’re putting more time into picking out the gear that’s when you kind of whatever you think about it and pull back a second and say you know what instead of just thinking about what’s gonna happen after in terms of the physicality or instead of just planning for the labor day like let’s think about what life with baby is gonna look like that’s true cuz there’s so much focus on like first birth birth birth birth birth right and then what about like the week after the month or the year after the two years after like nobody talks about that yeah and birth is a big deal sure we want to make sure that you know couples and women go in feeling informed and empowered right to you know put forth what they are needing in that moment like you said it is it’s one moment no matter no matter how long that birth goes on right it’s a moment right so ideally second trimester is really that golden trimester where you’re feeling good that’s right you were dealing with morning sickness hopefully it’s past and it’s subsided it’s not yet so busy and crazy that the third trimester kind of brings in this frenetic energy of I’m running out of time and I’ve got to get things done mm hmm and so second trimester is really that time and we can kind of just take it easy a little bit mm hmm and for couples to come together I like them to look at it even as a date I want them to look at accurate expectations so what really does happen right right though sleep disappear forever am I ever gonna see my partner again naked like what really does the middle part is how to work with a couple in particular because we know that if there’s discord within that relationship that enhances the likelihood that perinatal mood or anxiety disorder can come into play and then the last part really is talking about what our perinatal mood and anxiety disorders right not unlike what we just did but bringing the couple into the conversation and helping them recognize signs and symptoms because it’s one of those things that it’s super treatable and the earlier we intervene the better off everyone is right so let’s say though you already have the baby you have two babies and you feel like you’ve already bypassed that like you’re you and your husband are kind of like good and dad but like knocking heads on a constant basis and you didn’t go through this in the second trimester sure what do you can you still try to address it oh my gosh it’s never too late and of course we want to address that right before that baby was ever around there was that couple and we want to protect that couple you know so I when I think about relationships I oftentimes liken it to walking up a down escalator right so trying to walk off that down escalator so if you think about it it requires some very active steps moving forward actively investing in the relationship making it a priority making sure that we take our time to spend together because otherwise that escalator will just naturally bring us down and then separated and divided and that’s when all of that like you said that that butting heads really comes into play I’m gonna cry I want to how do i market this you know like I need the image cuz it really is what it is yeah deep moment I’m right I think you just really enough yeah yeah add a date right and that’s it and you know I’ll tell people all the time I don’t believe in day/night because after a baby if dating is gonna compete with sleeping it’s absolutely true you’re like sweep day whenever the best of intentions babysitters gonna grab where mom’s gonna come and you’re gonna look at each other and it’s like we could go out I mean right right right and I almost feel like you know cue the music fully yeah yeah so we don’t want that to happen but we recognize how important it is to connect in that way and so I’m a big believer that every time a baby’s born he comes or she comes with two new best friends creativity and flexibility so how do we figure this out one thing is is we get away from what date night has to look like and we do it during the day yeah right so maybe it’s a cozy you know morning thing before partners go off to work maybe we grab a lunch during the day maybe we stay home and the baby out for a walk ring we keep the place to ourselves right and then it’s just being creative anything that is two hours of a couple spending together enjoying each other and charging those batteries that’s a date it’s like you think of these dates like you had before you yeah became a mom like not married I guess like I’ve been trying to think of like when before we got married what were the things we used to do with each other and actually we would meet up for like lunch right and Rouge about yeah but we get into like this front where it’s like a date has to be dinner and a movie around drinks afterwards right it was like oh my gosh no man has six hours any more right now and that can be so expensive it’s bitter pay for a movie isn’t better I can’t do it right then we’re just not gonna do it right right my daughter the other day it’s like well if I can’t have six chicken because I don’t want any before is it good you know right but it’s like shifting your mind to manage your expectations again and not comparing to this like long lost life that you had because your relationship isn’t gonna be what it was before right right the best date might be sitting at home and putting a blanket down in the living room and having a picnic ya know it could be so fun or like getting you know mud masks then going into the bathroom and you create your cue you know like it doesn’t have to be what it was what are other ways that you think couples can kind of reconnect first and foremost we want to talk about appreciation an appreciation is a big one and it doesn’t have to come in these very grand gestures like we normally think it has to it’s a two day moments thank you so much for picking up the laundry the other day the thought of coming home to that mountain of laundry made me want to scream right yeah no yeah thank you you know you were so sweet with the baby yesterday I just loved watching you read a book to them and what we don’t realize is that these little day to day moments starts to create this environment of coziness and closeness and if we feel appreciated it’s like we sprout wings like there’s nothing to be pronounced that’s true the exact same behavior that all of a sudden felt so mundane I like the drudgery and I can’t stands at all sounds like sure I’ll do that I don’t mind yeah because someone’s seeing it and appreciating it yeah so those very well placed little comments and moments really can make a big difference I like to recommend that couples find 10 to 20 minutes a day to just sit down and talk to block out the outside world so another couch not like this and just huh talk about your day talk about what’s going on talk about anything and everything outside of the relationship because what you’re doing is that you’re ensuring that no more than 24 hours ever go by without you being able to stay connected it sounds so easy right like 1020 minutes but then something seems like you’re in it and dinner and right minutes that your child goes to sleep you go like this with your phone right so it’s a no phone zone right that whole idea we need to disconnect connect the mercial or so throw it out a window or put it in a drawer yeah right yeah right and then I find it to be very important because like you said it’s so hard and our days are so busy but if you find around the same time every day then it becomes an anchor in your schedule that’s true you know because then it’s like 9: 00 a. m. comes along and that was our time to connect before we started the day and oh we’re not together oh I really miss it and then that then becomes its own motivation to get it back on track one thing I always remember about my parents are still together to this day and I remember when I was a little kid they would always I would always hear them talking and more in the morning in bed they would just stay in bed and even though they’d like know that we couldn’t have the kids are up and I’d hear them just like having conversations they weren’t talking about anything like special but they it felt like these were the times that they would like it they’re like main like conversations okay and and I remember them always doing it I think they so they already had the secret the little day to day being this makes such a big difference in the long run I feel like for me and maybe this is what you’re going through too is the first year of being new parents is so hard right yeah because you’re really really sleep deprived and you’re really adjusting to this new role you know like adding to like adding number two and our family wasn’t as hard and in that way because we had already kind of defined our roles as like we’re parents now whereas going from not being parents to parents and trying to make a relationship the first year I felt like Michael and I struggled with that way more than we did when we advocate or yeah well you’re like trying to you’re like saying goodbye to your social life right in that way like in the way in like the way it used to be absolutely and I think that feels very much like you’re shedding something like yeah yeah yes definitely it’s a very big transition for the couple yeah you know my sons is that as a couple you guys were happy or you were very loving and it’s not like you felt like there was escaping hole in the relationship just waiting for a baby to like swoop right in right now we’re come yeah exactly you know and so there is there’s this moving and there’s this renegotiating that has to happen when we add a baby and adding one person to the family it’s all these other complex dynamics and rules now I feel like as a mom you want to give all your attention and energy and love to your kids and then you forget about you know your partner and that’s not a good to have it to be it that’s right and it’s one of the things you know we talked about how to climb up that escalator becoming very baby centric is something that’ll kind of pull you back down every later yeah and it’s hard because it is it’s this misguided emotion but it’s easy and they’re so sweet and cuddly and they smell really good most of the time sometimes they stanky it’s funny when I show affection to my husband in front of my kids their faces light up and like you would not believe like if I’m hugging Michael both kids come from whatever direction they’re in and they want to get in on that family and everything and it’s so cute and it and it makes me want to hug them more like what are you doing right there knows where they’re like they think it’s cute it’s so cute I think we didn’t even talk about breastfeeding though and yeah someone you talk about having your intimacy needs being met right for people who breastfeed they really feel like I’ve already shared my body so much and I add all the coziness that I needed I’m good I’m fully like don’t touch my nipple that’s right oh yeah don’t even try and get busy if I’ve already put my head on the pillow like I will cut you it’s got to be during the day and it’s got it you know I just can’t anything so date Yeah right dating is competing against sleep it’ll at least make it to the list right sex won’t even be on the list yeah as your no chance of competing right usually someone’s like gosh I’m kind of in the mood I could do that yeah and then they start to kind of lean over and let the other person know that it’s what I’m and then the other person is kind of like okay yeah so we’re just kind of automating that I think this is like really useful valuable information and also just to be aware that there are so many changes and that you have to come back to the foundation which is like why did we get into this craziness in the first place and like what do we still have in common let’s go out and like have some fun and talk about something besides baby yeah and I feel like sarvam anything like that’s an easy way to figure out how to get back into the conversation because I feel so awkward right so again like when we talk about scheduling sexy time it’s kind of like gosh this is really weird and that’s when the goofiness can start to come out but you can always go back to what used to work great for work then it’s gonna work again now that’s so true thank you for everything that you do for and that you did for us and and just all the work that you do for other mamas I just think it’s really great for people to know what kind of resources are available if they are struggling you know so that’s great we will leave all the info to how you can find her in the description below definitely yeah you guys don’t forget to join our private Facebook group it’s called fan for all moms will also leave a link below can we find you in there absolutely well yeah there are tons of wonderful moms other parents in there who can give suggestions they ask questions everyone’s just really good we don’t allow any judgement or any rudeness so you’ll get kicked out if you do yep I’m just so glad to hear that yeah mom yeah yeah exactly and such a wonderful resource and she’s gonna be in our well that’s all for today you guys please subscribe if you aren’t already give this video a thumbs up and we’ll see you soon fine..

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Comment (15)

  1. This is a very important topic!! As we all know things get so hard for your personal life after the first baby. Such great discussion…love this channel for bringing out great videos like this! Cleared out so many myths and brought out a different prospective to seeing things life after baby #FAMFAN

  2. Thanks so much for this video. My baby boy just turned 10 months & its been so hard trying to maintain a healthy relationship.

  3. Hi Susan and Sharzard, I have a question. So I’m not expecting yet but it’s in the cards at some point soonish. One thing that that really scares me about pregnancy is the weight gain, I’ve had issues body image before so I take care with good nutrition and excercise to not let it be an issue but I’m scared it may become an issue/sink into a depression with a newborn so was looking at creative options. With pregnancy there’s no getting around excess weight so was wondering if you guys can please look into whether it’s healthy to do liposuction/body shaping right after giving birth via c-section? It eliminates any further down time as you’ll be in hospital for roughly the same amount of time, is there any medical expert you can speak to about this? Perhaps an idea for a FAM or Mixed Make-up video?

    Obviously I’m not relying on you guys for a medical referral as in I’ll be speaking to my own doctors about this when the time comes but I thought it might ease the minds of any other ladies out there who have this anxiety as well as a creative option so to speak 🙂

  4. I didn’t think I was struggling, watched this video and wow definitely opened up some ideas and thoughts! Thank you guys!
    Hahaa Susan was so uncomfortable with all the touchy feeling going on lmao


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