Marriage Parenting Relationship Coaching
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Losing a spark after childbirth in marriage isn’t as uncommon as I used to think.

At the age of 21, when I gave birth to my first baby, I did not know it would bring so many changes. I was ready to raise a baby, but I was not aware of the changes happening within me. Postpartum depression was an unfamiliar subject which I did not learn about until I gave birth to my second one. Unlimited crying spells, anxiety, and loneliness- all crept in while I got busy bringing up my bundles of joy.

Postpartum depression

You see, after you push a baby out, you become an entirely different person- physically and mentally.

That’s not to say that the spark between me and my husband remained. You see, I was grappling with self-image issues, the stretch marks all over my body, saggy boobs, and constant fatigue. I didn’t feel attractive, and I feared my husband wouldn’t find me one either.

No matter what he did his best to reassure me or be a wonderful young dad and take care of our kids- the depressive hormones simply couldn’t go. And inadvertently, the passion between us fizzled out. I missed his touch, his cuddles, and his being all over me since childbirth.

After the first baby, healing was a tough transition. It took me a long time to wrap my head around what was happening. A baby, seemingly lost spark, and a struggle to understand and restore it.

But now, when I look back, I can recognise the five most common issues in a marriage after childbirth:

  • Lack of attraction towards your partner.
  • Lack of emotional connection and intimacy.
  • Lack of desire and passion towards each other.
  • Lack of respectful communication
  • Uncertainty regarding financial stability.

I was married in a wealthy family, so we were sorted about the 5th point. But the other four remained. However, these are not the only issues- the list goes on and on. Each couple’s journey is unique, and their struggles are different.

As our marriage thrived, with a few shifts in our perspectives and personalities, your marriage, too, can live. Let’s begin with restoring the spark in a relationship after childbirth:

relationship after childbirth

Embracing The Reality

1. Understanding The Physical Changes:

As I mentioned earlier, every woman’s body heals differently. For some, the transition will be smooth, but it will be challenging for others. I remember feeling frustrated and disconnected with myself for a good year, and pledging to come back was the toughest part of it.

It’s crucial to be patient with yourself and communicate openly with your spouse. What your physical needs are, how you see yourself, and how you want to be reassured- talk it all out with your partner.

2. Body Image:

I remember trailing my fingers over my stretch marks, which I soon realised would remain there all my life. Feeling self-conscious postpartum about your body is perfectly natural and normal. Remind yourself that your body has done something incredibly miraculous, and it’s, in fact, important to celebrate the strength that comes with it.

Share your insecurities with your partner. Allow your partner to support and reassure you in any manner you need.

3. Navigating Emotional Shifts:

I had gotten uncontrollably anxious and sulky. Unfamiliar with what was going on, I would often lash out or stay holed up in one room with my kids. I felt all the joy singing to my kids and playing with them, but I didn’t feel like engaging with people, participating in social activities, and, most importantly, bonding with my husband. I sought attention, verbal care, and physical intimacy from him. However, I didn’t know that it was temporary and that we could get out of it. So we did. As our children grew, we addressed the issues that drifted us apart for a while.

Actively seek your partner’s support while embracing the newness of your family dynamics and finding moments to reconnect with them.

Rebuild Intimacy

Rebuild Intimacy 

1. Prioritize Communication: 

As the key foundation of any relationship, effective communication is crucial to navigating postpartum challenges. For us to communicate effectively and healthily with our partners, it’s highly important to recognise and become aware of the new realities. Once we have wrapped our heads around them, let’s communicate with our partner with open and honest dialogues.

  • Share your feelings: Express exactly what you’re feeling. Exhausted, defeated, frustrated, anxious, or overwhelmed with all the raising-a-child challenges- communicate it all. Share your vulnerabilities with your partner. I realised that once I expressed myself that deeply and openly, it brought us closer because it gave my partner a peek into what I was feeling. We let our guards down and acknowledged our feelings as they were.
  • Listen actively: I learnt that listening to your partner didn’t at all mean giving them solutions immediately. Actively listening held an entirely different definition- non-judgement, validating, and attentive listening, providing a space for conversation. To be honest, I struggled with it, and it took me a great deal of time and work to reach a point where we both could listen to one another judgment-free.

2. Creating Quality Time Together 

Odd-hourly calls of parenthood affect quality time after childbirth. Creating time for each other can be challenging. However, it is equally important to nurture the relationship.

  • Date nights at home: Going out after childbirth was tough. We could not depend upon anyone to take care of the kids if we decided to go out. So, we created date nights at home only. Watching a movie together after the kids were asleep or ordering a late-night pizza became our favourite ways to spend time with each other comfortably.
  • Small moments: For us, little moments of intimacy mattered the most- a light caress on the arm, gentle hugs, a kiss on the forehead, looking at each other from across the room, and my personal favourite, waking up together in the middle of the night to tend to our little ones. My husband would fill up the feeding bottles, and I would change their diapers. These moments brought a profound change in how we defined intimacy after childbirth.

3. Reignite Physical Affection 

Physical closeness is a powerful way to restore that spark after childbirth. As I mentioned earlier, a light caress on the face or arm, gentle touches, lingering kisses- these may or may not be sexual, but they are powerful ways to rekindle the intimacy between the partners.

  • Restoring sexual intimacy:
    It is completely okay if sexual intimacy takes time to reignite. Take it slow, communicate openly about your desires and boundaries, and focus on mutual comfort and pleasure. Seeking support from an intimacy coach or marriage counsellor specialising in intimacy after childbirth can be helpful.

Suggested Reading: How To Understand And Build Intimacy In Every Relationship


Share Responsibilities

Sharing childcare responsibilities can reduce stress and burden on a single partner.

  • Teamwork: The single most common strategy that worked in our favour was to divide the childcare. If I bathed the babies, my husband would clothe them. If I fed the kids, he would clean them. If I stayed up till late with the kids, he would wake up to prepare their feeding bottles. If I washed and cleaned the baby after he pooped, my husband would be at the diaper and clothes duty.

Sharing these responsibilities in this way not only reduced the stress of raising our babies but also added fun to our marriage. We enjoyed our playful banters and running around for our little ones.

We understood one crucial fact about it all: we brought them together in this world, and together, we would team up and raise them.

  • Appreciate each other: Despite everything- fights, arguments, banters, or stress- if there is one thing that kept us all going all these years is appreciation. We saw each other’s efforts and contributions to making our lives better and easier. We treated each other with little things we loved. We have been very vocal about how much we appreciate each other.

In closing, regular check-ins with each other to talk about our needs and feelings, sharing childcare responsibilities with the help of a chore chart or schedule chart, and constant reassurance and non-sexual cues are the most practical ways to restore the spark in relationships after childbirth. It requires patience, understanding, and commitment to each other.

Embrace this new chapter of your lives with awareness, empathy, and self-compassion, and your relationship will thrive.

These insights and strategies help you navigate this challenging but beautiful phase. If you need further support, don’t hesitate to reach out. You’re not alone in this journey; I am here to guide you through it step by step.