Whether it is after a baby or losing your original connection because time has passed, we all have moments where we need to reconnect with our partners. No relationship is perfect, ever. No matter how perfect others may appear to us in person, or on Instagram, no relationship is perfect because we as humans are not perfect. We go through high ups and low downs with people we truly love. Below are things I have learned to do after having my son.
Prioritize your life.
Many may disagree with me here but I must be honest. I believe my partner goes first. Of course, I mean that to a point. If there is some scenario where I must make a choice to save Jet, my son, and PJ I will easily choose Jet and PJ would want me to save Jet. I will always protect my son first. What I mean when I say my partner goes first is that I need to foster and nourish that relationship so my family can be intact. It has to be a priority or everything else will fall apart.
Remember that life was about you and your partner first. The foundation of your child is you and your partner. In many cases, you would not have your child without your partner. It is easy to get distracted with your career and home life but when you look into your child’s eyes, try to keep in mind the other half of that child’s being and be appreciative of it.
Adjust to your reality.
Depending on your jobs and lifestyle the tips you read here or elsewhere may not apply exactly to your situation so learn to adjust to your reality. PJ works A LOT. He is out of town monthly and there are times he is gone for weeks therefore; a weekly set date did not work for us. Don’t compare yourself to others who have weekly date nights for example, do what works for your family. That could be monthly dates, or setting aside 30 minutes every night your partner is home to simply hang out with each other. Laugh, enjoy each other, make things light. Set aside a time where you are not talking about the kids, bills, the future, simply enjoy those minutes to yourselves.
Know your partner.
This goes along with keeping reality in mind. Things are not always going to be full of romance like a movie or a fairy tale. Would it be nice to be swept off your feet and have your partner plan dates? Of course it would but that may not happen.
I mention that example because I know PJ is not the type of person to plan dates which means I am not going to expect that from him. If I want to go out, I will think of the idea, set it all up and only tell him the date, the time, and what we are doing. I am not going to beg him to plan a date to only be disappointed when he does not or does not plan something I wanted to do. I am not going to complicate things. If I am the planner of the family, I will plan it.
If your partner works long hours certain days perhaps plan a date on a day he/she won’t be as tired or ask them what day they prefer. Work around your partner, you both are a team.
Pride clouds judgment.
If there are small arguments just let them go. Who cares who is right and who is wrong, move past it. Don’t let your pride cloud your judgment. You have to make a choice whether or not to put your pride aside and recognize your family is worth moving forward together.
Look at the bigger picture, think long term. If there are big issues, work on yourself, let your partner work on themselves so you can come together as a family and be a great family for your child. You want to show your child how to peacefully work through a problem and continuously work at it. You want to show your child what a functional relationship looks like as best you can. Those little people are watching our every move, let’s make the best of it.
Touch is important. I feel sincerity and energy through a simple hug. If you feel you lost that with your partner, be more conscious of it and work on it. Instead of asking straight away when they walk through the door if they remembered the eggs you asked for, stop what you are doing and greet them. Welcome them home. That alone could do so much.
A simple rub on their head, or messing with their hands while you’re on the couch can bring a smile to their face and they literally will feel connected to you.
Talk. Talk. Talk. Let them know any concerns you have, any worries, or any questions. Be honest and have a conversation. If it is out in the open that things have changed at least you will be on the same page and can voice how to fix it. It is good to check in with each other occasionally to assure things are okay especially when life gets hectic. Pause and talk for a bit.
Sex is not everything. Be friends, like each other.
Working on sexual intimacy is important but it is not everything. I do think after a child there is a strain because the timing is difficult, there are other new stresses on you, and overall you are adjusting to another person being part of your everyday life.
Even though sex is important and probably deserves its own separate post, I want to emphasize a relationship without sex. I believe having a solid, strong foundation of friendship is vital to staying connected to your partner. Our bodies and looks are going to change overtime so to rely on sex to keep a relationship alive I do not think is the best route.
Work on being friends again. Think back to what attracted you to your partner in the first place. Try to cater to whatever that is. If it is humor, go out to a comedy show. If it is working out, go for a hike, or do a gym session together. Anything that will reconnect you in a way that connected you two in the first place.
Many place an emphasis on love, I place an emphasis on like. We may have people in our lives that we love but not necessarily like. When your relationship started, it grew from like to love overtime. But I consider it is just as, if not more, important to like your partner. It is a great love story when we hear two people have loved each other and been with each other for years, but I think what is even more intriguing is to hear how long that couple liked each other.
I think liking is where the hard work is. To like your partner every single day is significant. If both of you are trying to reconnect the love is already there, focus on liking each other more every day.
Maintain your independence.
No one, at least I think so, wants to feel 100% depended on all the time. That is a heavy load to carry. It is also difficult to rely on someone else for absolutely everything. Self-reliance is a wonderful thing. When you join a partnership, you should rely on the other to a certain extent. You will judge how far it goes because it depends on every family’s circumstances.
It is easy to become so consumed in your relationship where you lose yourself along the way. Schedule out time for yourself. Do whatever you want to do alone during that time. You wear many hats, you may be mom, wife, or boss but don’t forget your own identity. Always take care of that. Your partner loves you, so don’t lose you.
Simplicity is best.
I find taking a simple approach to life works for me. I wanted to add this quickly at the end to just say reconnecting with your partner does not have to be grand with 5 dozen roses delivered to your door. You have no idea what a simple walk outside could do for you both. Keep a positive spirit, go back to your roots as a couple, prioritize your partner, make light of things, be considerate of their wants and needs, focus on your foundation and your child will see a good example of a family.
Remember you and your partner were a couple before baby came along, nourish that relationship for the betterment of all.