Relationship counsellor Steven Dromgool joined Jack Tame to talk about why relationships can suffer after you have kids - and offered some practical tips on what to do about it.
Practical tips for keeping your marriage on track after children:
- Team work makes the dream work
Make sure you're working together, not only to look after your child, but also your relationship and romance.
- Make sure you look after mum
Chemical changes in women during pregnancy and breastfeeding can lower their levels of serotonin, which means they need less sleep and can become slightly "obsessive" about their baby. However, dads don't automatically have the same chemical changes and can feel a bit left out. To make things easier, dads should be really present and take on the "protective role" in order to help mum relax. Also, dads need to be cuddling with baby daily to help form that bond.
- The three month rule
Accept that the first three months "will suck". To make them a bit better, dads should bring the "fun" back and make sure mum is getting some time away from baby, even if it's just 30 minutes in a different room. Also, make sure both baby and mum get lots of hugs.
- Talk it out
After three months it's time for mum and dad to talk about how to build the connection and nurture their relationship. Lots of hugging and kissing is important for this one. As well as making sure mum and dad make their relationship the priority.
If you are six to nine months post baby and still don't have any romance in your relationship, that's when it's time to talk to someone, Steven said.