3 energy saving ways to boost intimacy in the newborn days – *hint* the bedroom is not involved!
Regardless of whether this is your first bub or your 5th, those early newborn days are so draining and exhausting. It can take a real toll on your relationship, which, let’s face it, makes life even harder.
If you were like me, you would have been imagining easy lie in’s where hubby brings you coffee and breakfast in bed after a rough night, where he takes the other kids to play somewhere giving you time to sleep in, where you hear the muffled sounds of the vacuum sucking up all the bits and pieces that somehow accumulate on the carpet every. Single. Day!
It’s a real shock to the system when that doesn’t happen!!
The challenge is that he is going through his own changes, adapting to a new baby to care for and consider, roles shifting in a way that neither of you expected – even if for the short term, hormonal changes that come with becoming a father (either for the first time or again) – yes, men go through hormonal changes too!
When you both feel alone, you both feel unsafe and communication goes down the drain.
So how can you boost your intimacy in a way that doesn’t physically put you at harm’s way of pain and infection?
Here are 3 strategies we use – be sure to share any of yours in the comments below!
Anyone who knows me will be sick to death of this being my absolute go to! Though it’s astounding at how much we overlook this simple, yet effective strategy.
On my really tired days, my husband knows how tired I am by the frequency of the hugs I “offer”/ask for.
I asked him what he would think if I only hugged him once a week – his reply “what did I do wrong?!”
To hug means to let someone in, to be vulnerable – incredibly intimate.
We know that someone loves and appreciates us if they are willing to hug us, it suggests we are in a safe place.
When words fail us, hugs can easily communicate love and affection to the other person.
2. Our actual words!
We can’t expect our husbands to read our minds. I tried it for a long time, it only caused heartache and pain. I used to think that if he loved me, then he should know what I need. I’ve learned since those early days that, it’s just not true!
My husband can sleep through a lot, he would wake up refreshed, though totally unaware that I had been up and down all night (he lacks certain physical abilities to provide what our newborns need so I usually don’t bother waking him up unless I’m really at my wits end!).
So, it’s up to me to let him know what I need.
When I clearly communicate what I need, and if he is practically able to provide for those needs, then I feel safe and secure, and he knows he isn’t helpless in supporting me. Sometimes he can’t help (like he will need to leave early for work), so working out something he can do later to help is the next best thing (like hitting the shops for groceries and hidden chocolate at the end of the day…).
3. Quality couple time!
When kids are involved, we need to grab this while we can! For us, after the kids go to bed is our time to talk, have that hidden chocolate, watch a funny movie/TV show, foot/head massage, etc.
We need to prioritise this otherwise life just revolves around the kids – and that helps no one in the long term!
You may need to organise a babysitter from time to time, or get to the heart of what’s causing your older kids to not stay in bed (I have some extra suggestions on that one here!). The point is, you can’t feel safe with someone you never spend time with. So, look at your schedule, book in that time, say no to some things that aren’t as important – you can’t do it all!
All in all, the newborn stage is hard, but it doesn’t have to be lonely!
Do you and your partner have intimacy boosting strategies that don’t involve the bedroom? Share them below!!
More on our guest author – Jess!
Jess Mannion is wife to 1 and mother to 2 girls with baby number 3 on the way (stay tuned for the pink or blue!). While Jess is passionate about sleep, real coffee, and Jesus; she is also a passionate Counsellor and Family Coach who really wants to do herself out of a job by equipping families to connect and thrive together, rather than haphazardly blunder through life, all while living in the real world.