Get the most out of your relationship before baby arrives

LOVE Doctor Gabrielle Morrissey talks about what to do before a new baby arrives. 

Q: My husband and I are expecting a baby. How can we prepare our relationship now so we keep the spark after the baby comes?

A: Expecting your first baby is a special and exciting time. Every week is filled with new physical and emotional experiences.

For some, it's not a particularly sexy time - hormones play a large role in this.

And everyone has an opinion. But those broad generalisations like "everything changes" aren't helpful when you're trying to prepare as much as you can.

So, in the world of sex and relationships, here are some specific tips to for you to consider, before the baby comes:

Date. Date as often as you can so you enjoy this time together, the two of you, and the memory of alone, romantic, connection time is fresh in your life and habit when the baby comes. When you're on your date, practice talking about other things besides the baby. The natural inclination is to talk about the pregnancy (and then the baby's every detail and development once born too) so practice now making your time alone time that you spend focusing on one another.

Spend time together even when you don't feel like it. One thing that will change when the baby comes is freedom of choice. You will find yourselves accommodating your needs to when the baby is sleeping or lying on a mat quietly and you will steal that time for whatever needs to be done.

Chances are, as a pregnant woman, you are starting to understand sleep deprivation. However sleep deprivation takes on a whole new level once you have a baby. You will even admire yourselves for how much you can function on so little sleep day after day, week after week. When it comes to sleep and lack of it, there are two things you can do to prepare: sleep, whenever you can. Make sure the room where you sleep is conducive to sleep day and night. Get block-out curtains, manage noise levels and learn to sleep in the day as well as the night. Pregnancy is tiring: sleep when you can. And if your partner is tired, let them sleep too. Master this acceptance of daytime sleep and functioning on spurts of sleep rather than relying on eight hours at a stretch - those days are gone for awhile.

Minimise conflicts quickly. If you have an argument or tension between you, try to resolve it quickly through open communication.


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