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Do you have enough time for your partner?

Has having a baby affected your relationship?

I remember just being desperate to see Nick holding our baby for the first time. Nick and I have been inseparable since the day we met, I was very clingy and always needed cuddles, I remember sobbing nonstop when he was going away for one night (how sad is that!) I was terrified of something bad happening to him and knew I would not be able to have my afternoon nap because I always slept on him! (This was way before we had Tillie). We prefer to go out together than we do separately we just enjoy each other’s company. We do bicker too but nothing that a hug won't sort out.

When Tillie arrived I went from being a really needy girlfriend who had to have cuddles all of the time, to not having time for cuddles and not even realising! When we were alone all I wanted to do was sleep as Tillie has never slept well bless her but I never really gave much consideration to Nick who was busy working all hours in the pub and I was enjoying every second being a mummy.

We were both tired and we were snapping more at each other, things were said and I know other couples say the same things as we have done, he would say things like "it's alright for you I’m working all the time whilst you're upstairs with Tillie". He was right, he was working all of the time so I could stay with Tillie he knew I was just loving every second and was happy that I was happy and more importantly that Tillie was happy. I was trying to be as considerate as I possibly could be and not making him get up in the night like a lot of my friends shared the night feeds with their partner, I did everything for Tillie and he took over all my roles in the pub. I still feel guilty for not being able to help out more in the pub when I know I am needed but due to Tillie tots being incredibly clingy this has made things hard because apart from Nick or my mum Tillie will not go to anyone else but Nick and Mum are running the pub so we are always one person down. My family are wonderful and so supportive and it would break my heart if Tillie had to go to a nursery or child-minders I just love being a mummy and that is my number one priority. I am very lucky indeed that I can be a SAHM but also do some work when she is in bed.

Nick is so supportive and incredibly laid back, he does everything he can to make my life easier, he would work 24 hours a day if it meant that I was happy. He really is a wonderful boyfriend and daddy. But it is easy to let the tiredness and snapping take over and I don't know about you but I found that I was telling him all of the time what he was doing wrong with Tillie and saying "don't hold her like that, don't do that" etc.... I was becoming a complete dragon! Some days I find myself still getting wound up over silly things but can quickly snap out of it now.

We started going out for meals together on a Tuesday evening on our night off a couple of months after Tillie was born, we only went two miles away and found the first couple of times extremely bizarre, it was hard to find things to talk about as we see each other pretty much 24/7 but it was nice going out as a couple even if it was just for an hour, plus we are at an advantage that if we decide on a Saturday night to go to the pub for a drink, all we have to do is walk downstairs to our 'front room' and take the baby video monitor downstairs with us and have a chat with friends in the pub. Which I often find to be an effort but I realised that if we want to keep that special bond we have it's all about give and take and I often enjoy going out when I get there, it is just the thought of getting ready (even if it is just downstairs!)

I realised that I had to start talking to Nick more about Tillie and the things I was doing with her and encouraging him more to play with her and making him join in more, as even though he has always been a wonderful Dad I found he was often very nervous of her until she got to be about 10 months old, he was never sure of what to do with her or play with her if that makes sense and with her breathing issues and allergies it was hard not to be wary.

It almost sounds as if we were on the verge of breaking up, but this isn't the case at all, we have always been very much in love but the combination of tiredness and snapping I suppose in a bizarre way has made us stronger, with Tillie having a few problems since birth we have had quite a lot of worries as well as trying to run a business together and live together so after four years of being with each other 24/7 and still enjoying each other’s company as well as being able to laugh and want to go out together i think we are doing pretty well.

I get really shocked by some men's attitudes towards their partner and children especially the ones that use our pub, some of them don't give their partner a second thought and are very selfish they go out working all day then spend all weekend in the pub whilst their partner is at home, I really am incredibly lucky to have such a considerate partner who honestly puts me and Tillie first, he would never do anything to purposely upset me.

Now they are like two peas in a pod, they look the same, they act the same, they have a beautiful bond and this makes me incredible proud and I get so much pleasure out of watching her shout for her daddy and her face light up when she sees him. She drags him everywhere and he just loves this stage they have so much fun together. It also takes a little bit of pressure off me as up until January 2011 she would still cry if he even carried her down the stairs to the car, she was that clingy to me.

We laugh so much every day at Tillie it is nice to have family time and also that time together as a couple, we are looking forward to getting married in May 2012, we have lots of cuddles again and he is my pillow in an afternoon so I get a good afternoon nap when Tillie does and Nick gets to watch sport on the TV so we are all happy!
We have started swapping roles now and some shifts I work in the pub in the day time so Nick can play with Tillie. I guess it is just finding the right balance.

Did you change after you had your baby? Did it bring you closer together? Did your relationship break down? How did you manage to overcome the bickering?

Comments

  1. I do think babies can put a strain on even the most solid relationship- me and my hubby always try to do something at least once a week together, even if it is just going for a drink for an hour. x

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