New Baby, Distant Husband

Written by Claire Colvin

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“Ever since I had the baby, my husband has been distant.”

In the midst of all the excitement of new baby, especially the first baby, you rarely hear expectant parents talking about how this child will change their marriage. Babies are wonderful, let’s be clear about that, but they are also one of the biggest changes a marriage will ever go through. Like all aspects of parenthood, it helps to be prepared.

Before the baby comes it’s just the two of you and it’s easy to give each other the love, attention and affection you need for a healthy marriage. As soon as a child enters the family, that focus changes.  Babies have a lot of needs and they cannot wait. Much of the attention you were giving to each other is transferred to the child, which can leave one or both partners feeling alone.

So what do you do when you realize that your relationship has taken a hit? First of all, take heart. Distance between new parents is extremely common. If you’re feeling distant, left out, overworked, tired, neglected, unheard or overlooked it does not mean that your marriage is doomed. It just means that you had a baby.  The good news is that your marriage can definitely improve.

June Black, a frequent speaker at marriage enrichment conferences suggests the following:

1. Focus on connection rather than communication. In marriage we’re always told how important communication is. It is important, but with a new baby time is short. You may not have the time or the energy to really communicate so make connection your goal. Make time – you may need to schedule it – for the two of you to connect. Even if it’s as simple as a cup of coffee in the morning, make sure there is some point in the day when you focus on each other. Once you’ve connected, communication can come later.

2. Don’t forget to have sex. Pre-baby it might have seemed impossible to forget about sex, but in the early days of parenthood, it happens. If you’re feeling distant, especially if your husband feels distant, ask yourself “When was the last time we had sex?” There are going to be some days right at the beginning where sex is impractical, but as your body heals, make physical togetherness a priority.

Ladies, you may find that you don’t miss sex as your need for physical touch may be satisfied by cuddling and nursing your infant. Many husbands return to work after the birth and do not have as much contact with the baby. I know that you’re both tired, but he needs physical touch too. Cuddle your husband, kiss him and don’t forget to have sex.

3. Remind each other that you matter. It can be easy to lose your identity in the chaos of a new baby.  If you and your spouse only ever talk about the baby, ask about the baby, or tell stories about what the baby did today you may find yourself feeling lost.  Don’t forget to speak love to your spouse. If your husband leaves your bundle of joy each day to go to work, thank him. If you wife gets up three times a night to feed the baby, thank her for that. Remind each other that you matter, and that you are loved for who you are, not just what you do.

For more great ways to strengthen your marriage, consider a Weekend to Remember marriage enrichment conference. Conferences happen throughout the year across Canada and the US.

Take the next step:

Read Elma’s story of surviving emotional abandonment.

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39 Responses to “New Baby, Distant Husband”

  • Alexis says:

    Well, in my case was the other way around. My ex husband neglected me after giving birth to our daughter. He began to ignored me and just cared for the baby, he even scolded me if I did a mistake towards our daughter. He even told me to not put high hopes on him and to better put more attention to our daughter. Our marriage went downhill since then, I plow resentment towards him and things never were the same since our daughters birth. Now we are separated and he still does the same thing, ignores me but, takes care of our daughter. You will never know how that can hurt ones self esteem, always questioning yourself if you weren’t never enough.

  • CINDY says:

    To Jeff, I was at 14% body fat when I got pregnant and could easily lift 450 lbs on a leg press. I also have wanted a child for years. However, after the birth of my son my body never went back to being the same. Yes there is an epidural and yes he is the best thing that has happened to me but I also can’t lift as heavy due to a pinched nerve he left in my lower back, my bladder pushes urine out when I strain to lift too heavy, despite endless kegels, my uterus literally feels it’s pushing out my vagina if I deadlift over 120lbs. I am by no means the woman I was once, yes I adore him and wouldn’t change anything
    about having him but I still feel sad I can’t lift like I used to it takes a toll on my psyche. I also come home after 12 hour shifts and get him handed over by my husband so he can go to the gym and by the time he is back I have already put the baby to bed and am barely mustering strength to get my contacts out.Then he still wants sex????!!!! I am beyond exhausted and although I love him.I still gotta work to help pay bills. I still gotta cook so our family will be fed, I still have to do laundry so he has clean clothes to wear, I still have to do dishes so he has something to eat on. SO WHEN YOU SAY YOU FEEL YOU ARE 100 ON THE LIST, EVERYTHING WE DO IS FOR YOU! IF IT WAS ONLY FOR THE BABY, WE’D JUST CUDDLE WITH THE BABY ALL DAY AND LET YOU FIGURE OUT HOW YOU WILL SURVIVE. Think about it before you go getting all self pity party. Hope this helps open your eyes to our side a bit :)

  • boatdweller says:

    I’m in this boat. It’s been over a year after our first child.

    My wife has gone from my wife to my kid’s mom. Her secondary role is that of someone with a large list of chores to do ritualistically. I factor somewhere in about a hundred or so lines down from where “pay attention to the cat” becomes “clean the bathroom.”

    No sex, no affection, she stays up late if I go to bed, goes to bed early if I stay up. We don’t say “I love you” or even good bye half the time. Her only involves getting pictures of me doing dad things she can post online. I’m a roommate at this point.

    I feel like a stranger. All that awkwardness. Feels like having to interact with an ex in highschool

    I’ve broached this subject with her. Not in any pressuring way. Not in an attacking way. It’s been noted and received but nothing’s changed. It feels like it’s gotten worse.

    In the animal kingdom the females usually take care of the kids. Maybe this behavior is a throwback, chasing the male off. So much of the childbearing psych is just instict.

    I don’t know. I’m fed up, however. I understand getting bumped from her top priority, I didn’t realize I’d be outranked by inanimate objects. Especially not toilets.

  • Aldo says:

    Jeff, I commend you and agree with you regarding the griping going on in these threads.

    First, the women need to realize that God told Eve in the garden of Eden that because of her part in eating from the tree which He had told them not to eat of, she would suffer great pain in childbirth- Genesis 3:16.

    Now, that being so, does not give them the license to gripe, complain, and cast blame on their spouses.

    On the other hand, Paul tells both parties what to do in Philippians 4:8, “Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things.”

    The inference of this verse is STOP griping, complaining, criticizing and talking negative. DON’T DO IT! Instead, think of, and focus on the positive. “Then the God of peace will be with you”- verse 9.

  • Jeff says:

    I don’t know what child birth feels like. I have no clue. I don’t even pretend to know. What I said was I have heard that all my life kidney stones are just as bad. Some women even say it’s worse. You should try to see something positive in life things would sure be a lot easier on you. One part of loving your spouse is understanding their pain. There have even been reports of one spouse taking the pain from the other. I don’t know about that tho. As far as dad’s and uncles taking maternity leave go, I don’t know what that has to do with anything. A mans place is providing for his family. How he does that in my opinion is by providing whatever the family needs at that time. Weather it’s at work or at home. You sound like you grew up on an episode of full house. I have 3 little girls 6, 4, and 1 and they are all daddy’s girls. I done my part and still do. I work 14 hours everyday and come home and take care of the kids so my wife can get some rest. Part of being a mom or dad when you have a child is putting your own needs aside to take care of your family’s needs. That includes your spouse. That means unless you have some ppd you have to suck it up and get over it. It don’t take 2 parents 24/7 to raise a kid. What it takes to have a good marriage is 2 adults trying to make each fall in love again everyday. Nothing will make your marriage look worse to you than sitting around talkin with your friends about how bad y’all have it. If both of y’all are grumpy at each other the baby ain’t getting much love. You talk all this crap about how bad it all was for you but haven’t said 1 thing you enjoyed. Change your prospective. Again I say ladies and gentlemen this is very simple. You get back what you put in. If your mean they will be to. If your nice and loving then you will get it back. It might take some effort on your part but it’s a lot less work than divorce. It’s easier to keep one loving you than it is to get another one to do it. Kids don’t make you have feeling. What does that even mean? You think cuz you seen him cry it’s a new feeling? I don’t get it. These new feeling your talking about are feelings he has always had. Your just now noticing because he is seeing his world crash down before his eye and nothing he does seems to help. Most of us won’t admit it but us men have to have a good woman for support or we can’t be the leader of the household. You have groom your man and inspire him. Not run your mouth about his flaws. Tell him how good he is even if he isn’t. The more you say it the more you’ll believe it the more you believe it the more he will believe it. The harder he will try to live up to those expectations. How hard would you try if the person you are trying for makes you feel like crap? Happy workers are productive workers. Don’t tell him to do something or even ask him to do it. He wants to help you but he don’t want you to ask. Try saying oh dang I meant to take out the trash. See if he does it. I bet things start turning around if you take my advise.

  • Lauren says:

    Jeff, I and other women on this thread have praised their husbands or fathers!

    Your thread is verging on disrespectful! Being a man you clearly are ignorant by virtue of experience; on childbirth. Some women have a good experience others terrible you aren’t qualified to make that judgement. I have passed a kidney stone and although painful is hardly the most painful thing you can experience. Women make the potential sacrifice of life and death when giving birth. They actually have to develop and nurture the child which is mentally / emotionally draining. It’s easy to say it’s not hard when your only briefly involved in the conception, although vital isn’t at all hard.

    If your a Christian , read the bible more carefully regard spousal behaviour. If your wife for a period comes difficult this doesn’t merit you to become complacent. A marriage isn’t a current account, a economic exchange of goods and services.

  • Shelley says:

    Thank you Jeff for responding to Laren message and may the Lord bless you both in your relationship to Jesus first and to your family, in Jesusname amen

  • Jeff says:

    First I would like to say I have 3 amazing daughters and unlike the women in this thread I know this can’t happen without the partner y’all are all gripping about. Laura you gave birth like billions of women before you. Most of them think of child birth as a gift. You sound like you were tortured. The joy you recieve is suppose to overcome the pain. Besides there is this thing called an epidural. I’ve heard all my life passing a kidney stone is just as bad if not worse than giving birth. I’ve passed 23 of them and I don’t discribe any as bad as you made child birth sound. If you want help, love, support or anything else give the same to your spouse. The bible tells us love god first, your spouse second, your family third and everything else after that. It says you will never be happy until you do this. It’s a 2 way street ladies. You get what you give out. It’s not high school hard to get don’t work. Same thing with you guys.

  • Lauren says:

    My father was actually great, so was my Grandfather and uncles!

    My dad was so desperate for a baby when my sister and I came he was so happy! There are so many pictures of my dad Grandad and sister! Instead of just emotionally checking out he plugged in a took 6 months off then worked flexible hours.

    My uncle also took 1 year off with his daughter although this isn’t possible for most men , you will never regret it! He became much more emotional after having a baby. He would always keep hugging me when I saw him. My mum said hey that’s not strange he is hormonal! Seriously guys be prepared to get hormonal!

  • Susan says:

    Hi Rick,

    Just want to ask you, do you all sit and talk each other? Why not speak to her when she is calm? Ask her the reason why she is fighting with you all the time?

    Let me pray for you Rick.

    Dear Father,

    I commit Rick and his wife in Your hand. Lord, restore this marriage; protect his marriage. Help both of them to talk to each other; honest and open to each other. Lord, more than everything, help them to receive Your love in their lives. Thank You for hearing our prayers. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

  • Susan says:

    Hi Alena,

    Sorry to hear your situation. Do you spend time talking each other? If yes, ask him, can you help me do this this this..Alena, you don’t get angry and disappointed. You have to take care of your precious child. Remember, we gave birth to our child and they are innocent; whether your partner is caring or not but you please focus on your child. Alena, Jesus cares for you and He loves you and i encourage you to trust Him. Also, please log on to knowingjesuspersonally.com He is your strength.

    Let me pray for you.

    Dear Father God,

    I commit Your child, Alena, her son and her fiance in your hand. Lord, I pray for her fiance. Lord, change him, help him to love Alena and his son. Lord, draw Alena and her fiance closer to You. Help them to see Your love in their lives. Protect their son and I thank You for hearing our prayers. In Jesus’ name,Amen.

  • Viera says:

    Laura..What you wrote is all true but I had strength to do everything because from the first moment I saw my new born baby I fell in love with her and then everything was easier. Each time when I was exhausted and tired and still in pyjama after lunch :) I look at my baby face and I was strengthen by my love to her and of course Jesus my saviour was there with me.

  • Laura says:

    I think a lot of men dont understand what a woman is going through after birth. Anxiety (am i a good mom, can i go to the toilet and leave the baby unattended, am i doing this right, is this norma for the baby), exhaustion (no sleep, producing milk, recovering, raging hormones), self loathing (stretchmarks, wieghtgain, no time to shave legs, no time for a bath, covered in baby puke), feeling trapped (not one second a day alone, not one second to wonder of in thoughts, cant even go to the toilet without being anxious about the baby), full time feeding, cleaning, cooking, looking after the baby), and besides that, in nine months time her body grew this wonderful miracle that physically drained her. Delivering a baby is so painful, you can not imagine what its like. And the pain is not just for a couple of minutes. Remember how tired you were as a teenager because of your changing body? Your wife is probably ten times more tired because she had to grow a baby from scratch.

    Besides all that it is normal for women to be distant for weeks after birth. This has everything to do with exhaustion and hormones. Just tell her she is beautiful and a great mother and she will get better bit by bit.

  • Chris says:

    jolubug3….i am so happy for your new baby boy! he sounds like a bundle of joy for you all. yes, they are adjustments but the promise of God for our children is…great shall be the peace of thy children! thank God too, they dont stay children forever. this temporary time of breast feeding will pass soon and we pray that your lives will return to normal as defined by the bible! when we commit our children and families to christ, we can be sure as paul said…i know he is faithful to whom i have committed it all!! 2 tim 1.12. dr. kevin leman on YouTube also has some great insights on how to rear children if you would like to check his teachings out. who among us is the perfect parent? who doesnt need more understanding in bringing up our children in the nurture and admonition of the lord. ephes 6.4…i pray that your Young boy would truly have the peace of christ upon him and be weaned at the right time so he can not only enjoy solid food physically, but have the solid spiritual food of christ also to digest and lead him into all of Gods will for his life and yours in jesus name amen!

  • jolubug3 says:

    I have two pre teen daughters with my husband and now a 3 month old boy. Before I had our son, my husband and I spent so much time together. We worked together we ate lunch together and then drove home together. Everyone would ask us if we got sick of one another. We have been in eachothers lives since we were 17. We have had our ups and downs and ins and outs but all in all we are so in love. Mutally we made the decision to start over and concieve and in July we gave birth to a 10lb healthy boy. Our son has been more than a blessing, people fall in love with him at first sight. My husband loves him and he loves his family we are his first priority. The problem is me, im tired I know it’s not an excuse and I know its not fair to him but I am seriously so tired I feel like im losing my mind. Before I gave birth I accepted a position as a supervisor and worked long hours making great money. Working in the same building as my husband made it that much more rewarding. We would pick up our kids and grab dinner and veg out or go to the gym together. After having my son I could not fathom returning to work full time. I felt like I was going to miss out on so many milestones yet I was internally being pulled back to work because thats what I do and know is work, so I came back part time. I work 7-1230 now and had to step down and also relocate to a closer location to my house because im breastfeeding and right now I only produce what my son needs. I figure at some point I will go back full time but my life has changed so much since I have had him I have given up alot to make sure he is well taken care of and constantly only given breast milk as it is important to me. With all that being said, my son is a MOMMA ONLY baby. He will have fun with his sisters once home from school and Daddy once home from work but its about a 10 minute span and hes back to wanting me or wanting to feed. I feel like my entire day and night is consumed with baby. I have what seems to be like no more one on one with my daughters im constantly grouchy and tired and once my husband returns from his 30 -45 minute workout at the gym by 830 pm im either already asleep as I fed my son laying next to him or im just a zombie. I want my husband, I yearn for his touch his love his affection and his time as much as I think he wants mine. I just need to learn balance and find my center and make time for everyone. I look like raggedy ann and my roots are showing but I dont care I just want my husband to know I need and want him. I am tired, dog tired, lately baby has been up every two hours at night to feed (growth spurt). I cant nap during the day and I regret it by 830. I hope it gets better.

  • Chris says:

    jazmin…i am sorry to hear of your situation. commitment is not easy to get from a person is it. conceiving a child in sexual unión we see is not the same as unity in a family with two committed parents to their love and children. that of course is why God has ordained the concept of marriage, so that two people can become convinced for themselves before entering into the sexual part of what marriage includes. of course, now you have seen that for yourself and are dealing with its realities but not to fear. even when people are seemingly failing us, jesus never will. you can find your refuge and help by receiving christ personally into your heart so that jesus himself will undertake for you and assist you in this troubling time in your life. once we realize the difficulties life can challenge us with, its all too apparent that we cant live this life without the aid of our creator, God himself. i would encourage you to log onto, knowingjesuspersonally.com or click talk to a mentor above on more information on how you can come into a personal relationship to God through his Son jesus. you will experience life as it was made to be lived. which of us would not want to have life in its fullness? i pray now that jesus would open your eyes to the hope you have in him. for you and your friend and your child, so that you three can all come into the blessings that jesus salvation, forgiveness and love offer us so that we can live in this world in victory and not be left alone in our circumstances in jesus name amen!

  • Jazmin says:

    I don’t even know where to start with this in the beginning my boyfriend was fine very excited for the baby to be here once the baby was born everything changed! The first week he was over the moon with the baby he was a great dad very caring & loving, then he started a new job & things got worse. He’d be working late so when he got home I understood he was tired so I didn’t bother him for help when it came to the baby or chores. Then one day he just didn’t come home anymore he went to stay with his dad. He always says it’s my fault but i don’t understand how. He only like to hang out with coworkers from work or his sister when he does come over to see the baby he just falls asleep. I lay down facing him & he turns the other way. I feel so heartbroken about his actions. My baby is 3 months old now & I don’t know if it will ever get better or if I lost him. Let me say I talk to him about it try to cut him slack because I know he works but when he’s with me he’s mad all the time & yells at me. I love him & wish my son could have his parents together

  • Chris says:

    lilly…i am sorry to hear of your struggles. its true that life and change could be considered synonyms, including married life. although change is a negative Word for many, actually many changes are good and healthy for us. its actually good for us to move from time to time. to change Jobs. to change environments. now of course, i am not suggesting we change mates but the changes that occur within marriage are also many times positive although they could be viewed as negative. for example, the romantice level of the courtship generally tapers down after marriage. that is a change that many may view as negative but actually it can permit the marriage to move into its next stage, which is allowing Gods love now to become first place within the marriage relationship. his love that is kind, caring and benevolent, not soon angry or upset. those are qualities that need to also come into the marriage as the romantic aspect dies down and naturally so. you see, romance has been defined as the persuit of the unknown. logically then, once we know our mates intimately, there isnt that same quest for seeking as we had before and that is true in all of life. when we seek and then find, like Christopher Columbus, we dont keep seeking the new world again once it has already been found. so too in marriage, we come to know our mates in intimacy but then we also come to know their defects and faults which can challenge our love to grow to its next level in a spiritual way when human love wanes thin. you have a baby now. that is a big change for the marriage. now there are three not two so give your husband time to adjust. he has been used to having all of your affection all of the time and now he has to share that and it can take time to assimilate that for him. let your marriage go through the natural and supernatural stages it needs to as you submit your life to christ and let your husband submit his to christ too together. i pray that that transition comes with the blessing of jesus so that you dont stumble over certain changes that are in reality not bad but rather for your spiritual good. blessings!!

  • Lilly says:

    Our daughter is 6 months old now. Both of us have crazy busy schedules at work. My schedule is actually busier. My husband is a wonderful person. He does most of the house chores and I cook when I can. He is a great dad as well, he never complains about spending the whole weekend when I a working with the baby, and he actually brings her to my work so that I can nurse her. I can’t ask for a more caring husband or a sweeter baby!

    Since the baby was born however his affection is way much less! I try my best to dedicate time to him but he doesn’t seem to be as interested in physical or emotional bonding as I am. I literally have to ask for a hug or a kiss as he never seem to want to do any of that anymore without me asking and pushing for it. If I try to bring it up he seems to be in complete denial about it as he thinks nothing changed. I sometimes worry it is my extra belly weight after the baby or lack of sleep that shows very clearly on my face that pushes him away and he doesn’t want to say anything that may break my heart, but I know he is not a shallow person though.

    I know things are not the same but I don’t know how to approach him. I am a very honest and direct person but when I talk to him about these things in a completely open way he seems to get very upset. I need advice on how to make him understand my concerns and my need for more affection!

  • Chris Landwerlen says:

    pam…i am sorry to hear of your situation. from what you say your husband is not accepting his role as a new father and married husband. when men act this way, it can only reveal that their lives are far from jesus. it will be good for you to draw close to jesus and to his people, his church for support, knowing that God will never allow you to go through more than you can bear and at the same time give you the wisdom to handle this situation, knowing too that you must be sure that your baby is truly being cared for in your abscence should you choose to go back to work. noone, not even your husband, can be left to care for your child, if they are not trustworthy and show it by the good fruits of their lives. jesus bless!

  • Pam says:

    It’s good to read similar stories. I too had a baby exactly 2 1/2. He’s adorable. my husband is currently the provider for our family and ever since we’ve had our baby everyday it gets worst. Sometime he sends me a txt saying he’s going out and doesn’t even bother explaining why. He wants nothing to do with changing diapers, feeding, nor holding the baby specially if he’s crying. And he literally will not change a diaper anymore and he’s never even bathe the baby. Today I confronted him about whats going on because he didn’t even eat the dinner I made for him yesterday and hasn’t even said a word to me since yesterday. He only texted me later on in the evening to say he needed some space and that he was going out. ( I don’t know how much more space does he need when I spent the entire day and morning out of the house to give him space. And his answer to all my questions was that I’m soffocating him..
    This coming from the man that works from home and is not responsible for any shores around the house and doesn’t even hold the baby so that I can shower or eat for one second, and if he do agrees to hold the baby he complains and says I’m interrupting him from his work or that why can’t I just wait till he’s asleep to do my personal things.
    Soon I’ll be going back to work (part time) and in afraid of leaving the baby with him because sometimes he just let’s the baby cry w/o even checking if baby diaper is dirty or if he’s hungry. It’s like he’s lost all common sense in his head and all sense of responsibility for a little person.
    I’ve officially started looking for a full time job that will provide a lot more so I can afford to be on my own and day care because the way things are going is kindda scary and I have no idea what to do.

  • Claire Colvin Claire Colvin says:

    Hi Alena, Congratulations on the birth of your son! Having a baby can be a very overwhelming experience so first of all, those feelings are normal. Your body is also still being flooded with hormones so that can make all of your emotions more intense than they would usually be. It sounds like you could really use some help. You’re tired and sore and home with the baby and you’re not getting what you need from your partner. This may sound really obvious, but have you had a chance to talk to him about it? To have a good, helpful conversation you’ll need to try and find a time when you’re both somewhat rested (i.e. not right before bed or at the end of a long day). It might help to let him know you’d like to talk about how he can help with the baby and ask him what a good time would be. Some men prefer to have some warning about big conversations.

    When you talk to him try to stay calm. Let him know that you are overwhelmed and you need his help. Have some specific things that he can do. If you’re nursing he can’t help feed the baby, but he can change the baby, help with bath time, hold him, put him down for a nap etc etc. Having specifics in mind can be easy to sort through than a more general “I need help”. It may be that he thinks you have it under control, or he might feel like he doesn’t know what to do but it took two of you to make this child and both are responsible to care for him. It could be simply that he’s waiting for you to ask for help. You’re engaged to this man and planning to spend a lifetime together so this should be the kind of conversation that you can have. I’m glad that you have a partner and you’re not in this alone.

    It might also help to see if there is anyone else who can help as well. Do you have family in the area? Or friends? I know that when my sister in law had her first baby she’d ask friends to come over for coffee while she cared for the baby. She felt isolated being at home and having the friends come to her house was much easier in the beginning than going out with the baby. In my city the hospital puts together groups of Moms who have babies around the same time so they can be a support to each other. Does your hospital do anything like that?

    Also, remember that it won’t always feel the way it feels right now. Having a baby is a total game changer and sometimes there can be some grief that comes with that as you realize that some things will never be the same. It doesn’t mean that you love your son any less, it’s just part of the process. Don’t be afraid of feeling those feelings. Pay attention to your moods. If you start to feel blue or depressed, see your doctor. Post partum depression is very real and very treatable. I don’t know if you feel confident in your mothering yet or not, if you do, wonderful. If you don’t, it will come. Everyone who has a baby goes through that time at the beginning when they don’t know what they’re doing. Babies are pretty resilient. You’ll figure it out together.

  • Alena says:

    I had a baby 6 days ago and my fiancé has been leaving every morning doing his own thing and then I dont see him until 2am which is when he’s off work he owns a lounge. He comes home then plops into bed and I have to do everything ! I seriously want to smack him while he is peacefully sleeping because he will literally Ignore when im waking up constantly to feed the baby. I am so sad because he still does whatever the hell he wants like he has no responsibilities even though he has a son nkw. The lounge he owns he gets to hang out with his friends every night and enjoy himself. I just want to cry I don’t like this dtay at home life I feel like im suffocating. He doesnt help me or spend time with the baby he is acting so childish I dont know what to do. I really hate that I feel like I wish I never got pregnant :( I do love my son very much and would not change him for the world but im so anxious and I want this feeling to go away.

  • Great subject. As strange as it might sound, some new fathers are jealous of the baby. Mom and the baby get all the attention. Baby certainly gets the attention from mom that used to go to dad.

    It will pass if dad is very involved in the process. Mom needs, as the article states, to reincorporate dad into the mix. Husbands want to feel respect and this is one time he can feel neglected. He may not realize why he feels distant.

    Mom invite your husband back into the “inner circle” again.

    Glad to have found your site!

  • Tia Glenn-Cooke T. Glenn-Cooke says:

    Hi Eve, congratulations on your new little one!
    I’m so sorry you’re feeling overwhelmed by the change you sense in your husband right now. Many women have a difficult time, a grief period even, after they give birth. While a new baby is a joy, things certainly change once your little one is outside your womb. You might want to talk a little bit about that to your doctor at your next check-up.
    Have you tried talking to your husband about your feelings? It sounds like you’re putting a lot of pressure on yourself to fix a problem that might improve with a conversation. It’s easy to make pregnancy all about the mother and baby. Chances are, your husband hasn’t had a lot of time to adjust to or talk about these changes. Ask him how he’s feeling about being a dad, give him freedom to talk about his concerns and fears and hopes, and then bring him yours.
    In pregnancy, a lot of funny things happen in our bodies. Your sex-drive may have gone up, but if for some reason your husband seemed uninterested, it may not have been that he saw something wrong with you: a lot of men (especially when they really desire a baby, like you said your husband did) are intimidated and afraid of doing some harm to the baby or their wives! Since you only had your baby 10 days ago, if you’re trying to bring sex back into your relationship, there’s a good chance he’s just concerned for your health (your doctor probably would be too – most health professionals recommend waiting until the 6 week mark, or until you feel physically comfortable and healed). I’d love to pray for your family as you start this new journey!
    Father, thank you for Eve and her husband. I thank you too for the gift of their new baby! Thank you for delivering baby healthy and safely into the world. Thank you for helping Eve to make it through a difficult pregnancy and for blessing her with a husband who tries so hard to take care of her. Lord, we pray that you would bless them with openness in their marriage. Help Eve to listen lovingly to her husband, and help him understand how best to love her in this time. Let them approach this conflict with confidence and to imitate your unconditional love. Help their whole family to know and love you. In Jesus’ name, amen.

  • eve says:

    Losing my husband? I just had our baby 10 days ago and something inside me tells me something is wrong with my husband I feel him more distant, I have been with him for 5 years and this is the first time I feel like something is wrong I’m extremely loveable and he grew up in a family where live was not an option… Being he did grow up this way, he is very kind and sweet he always has been a wonderful husband all he has ever wanted was a child. I’m so confused I don’t know what happened I feel him less intimate and he was turned off by my pregnancy, we never had sex and I miss him so much. I want him to show me the love he used to… Am I over exaggerating or could I have lost him some how being pregnant and fat and tired, he helped me so much during the pregnancy I now notice he stopped doing the things he did before, I wonder if he’s tired and I finally pushed him to not want to help me? But my pregnancy was very hard and I am 5ft and was carrying 11 pounds of baby including the placenta!! I have tried to bring the sex back but I still don’t feel like he is the same I love him so much and if I lose him…. I dont think I can go on without him.

  • M. Jantzen says:

    Hello Adrian,

    Thank you for sharing some of your story. As a father of four boys (one of which is 3.5 months old), I totally understand your frustration. Your life has just undergone ‘major’ change. Moving out of your house, learning to live together, having a baby. These are major life stresses. Plus there’s probably other stuff that’s hard in life for you right now too. What you are experiencing is normal. Your wife is probably exhausted and feeling irratable becuase the baby always needs her. It’s probably hard for her to switch from breast feeding with her body into pleasing you with her body. She might need personal space and time to adjust. And from your comment, you seem to understand this and are not pushing to have much sex. I admire your empathy and willingness to be patient with her.

    It seems that your greater concern is the lack of affection from her and the tension and fighting between the two of you. Again, given the big changes lately and the fact that you two, like all of us, are imperfect. One would expect there to be conflict and disharmony. But the question is? How long will it last and what can you do about it?

    Well, for one thing, just keep up your sacrificial, loving attitude. To lose that would lead to bitterness and gaurentee the destruction of your relationship.
    Another thing is to work on expressing how you feel. For a lot of men, this is a challenge. We tend to start sentences with ‘i think’ rather than ‘i feel.’ You might think she will see you as weak, but it is the opposite, so long as you don’t lash out with negative emotions. And when she tells you how she feels (and you really should ask her), listen, have thick skin and don’t try to fix her. Show empathy for her struggles and affirm her (you clearly think she is doing a great job with your child). She will feel close to you and supported, and just might want to engage in physical affection. I’ve written an article on this topic, titled: A Man’s Take on Why Feelings Matter.” http://powertochange.com/discover/a-mans-take-on-feelings/
    Lastly, as you listen, choose together as a couple to but the problems in front of you, to face them as a team, instead of between you to divide you. View the tension and conflict and big life change as a threat to your relationship that you must tackle together for the sake of one another and your future.

    And most importantly, our capacity for selfless love and to keep on forgiving is flawed because we as humans are flawed. As a Christian I believe that Jesus came to remedy that flaw in us and to teach us how to truly love unconditionally. He can add more joy to our relationships than is humanly possible. This link explains how you could begin to experience that in your life and for your relationship: http://powertochange.com/discover/faith/loveandgod/ This video also says it in a nutshell: http://powertochange.com/itv/spirituality/falling-plates/

    Take care Adrian.

  • adrian says:

    I’m having real difficulty; our little one is four and a half months, and a bundle of joy. My partner is fantastic with her, and incredibly patient with feeding and anything else. But she gives me no affection at all at the moment. I don’t care about sex, I just want a kiss and a hug and for her to hold my hand occasionally, to feel that I’m still in a relationship. She says she can’t do this because I get irritated and moody sometimes, and she feels tense. For sure, I can be these things – we only moved in together a month before the birth, and I gave up my house to be with her – but I’m doing my best. I also do almost all the cooking and washing up, cleaning and driving, and feeling a bit like a ‘flat slave’. If I knew things were going to change, I wouldn’t be upset, but we just argue more, and I feel things falling apart.

  • Jamie Jamie says:

    Hi Rick, guard yourself from letting this issue become a ‘tug of war’ between you and your wife. Instead work at this together as a team. Work hard at understanding where your wife is at emotionally and physically. She has gone through some extreme changes in the last year and you need to discover how best you can love and support her. But also work hard at helping your wife understand where you are at. Don’t point to her as the problem, “You don’t have sex with me anymore.” but to identify your own feelings of being unconnected. Discuss with her how the two of you can work together to build into each other as well as your daughter. Make sure you and your wife both acknowledge that this is a huge change in your lives and in your relationship and to move forward together is going to take team work not lashing out at each other. Know that you are not going to have the same relationship you did before adding a new member to your family. It will be different and if you work together you can make it something wonderful.

  • rick says:

    I cuddle rub her all over to make her fill good she don’t show me anything

  • Celeste65 says:

    To Rick :
    Maybe you two should go to counseling. Its possible that your wife is deprressed and doesn’t know it. Also, as another poster stated, “there is more to intimacy than sex”. Frequency of sex isn’t an indicator of how healthy your marriage is.
    I hope your wife will agree to counseling .

  • rick says:

    Hi I’m rick just had my first kud at 39 me and my wife had sex all the time before baby always had fun my daughter is 8 mo nth old we have had sex 4 time sence baby came we fight none stop she blames me for everything I just got told from my docthat I have suger diabetis so she thro that it in my face I love my woman but its geting to the point where I think the only reason I’m here is for a pay check I need some help in the right direaction please help me

  • Andrew says:

    @H I read an article about an experiment that was done where they created the same type of pain by electric shock methods on two men could not handle the pain and thought they would die!! She just went threw a brutal experience in her life which was caused by you and although there is joy in the end it was still painful. Often we men don’t understand woman however what I have learned to do is to search and rely on Christ word to show me what I should do. You want the instant answer as to what the problem is when maybe you should back off and allow HER to come to you not you to her and pray that Christ will comfort her through the Holy Spirit and wait.

    God Bless

  • H says:

    Interesting. Well, here’s a mans perspective. I understand about the lack of sex drive. That’s more than reasonable. I also understand completely about how much time and effort having the little person in our lives is and how tired it makes both of us.

    What I am having trouble dealing with is the complete whiplash from wanting to be cuddled and held to physically recoiling if I try and lean in for a kiss post pregnancy.

    Frankly, it’s doing my head in. I didn’t suddenly turn into a troll overnight. I’m still the same person I was the day before the birth. I’m still helping out with the cooking/cleaning/washing/dishes. If anything I’m doing more of it, a lot more of it, than before. Add changing to the mix too.

    Intimacy is more than just sex. And a lack of it can be read as rejection, especially if there is a total lack of communication about it as well.

  • shelley anderson says:

    Dear Abba Father-Daddy.
    Lord I want to lift up my sister to you at this time in her life as she has a concern in her life. I pray that you will respond in a way that she will receive Your grace and comfort at this time in her life.
    In Jesus Mighty Name Amen

  • Celeste65 says:

    Having our first child changed my husband.
    I can’t say for sure whether this event triggered his behavior, or if he was just waiting for the right time to reveal his true nature.
    I struggled with post partum depression. After that, I struggled with another kind of depression after returning to work full time.
    To say that I “had a hard time” is an understatement. I was in an abyss, unable to get out and my husband was not supportive. I finally came to him when I couldn’t take it any more, and he angrily said to me: “What the f*** do you want me to do about it?”
    So….physical closeness with my unsupportive and verbally abusive husband was the last thing on my mind.

  • mzrozy says:

    You are so right!!!All they want women to do is have SEX, Sex, Sex. They never tell the man what he must do to make a woman feel like she wants to have Sex with him in the first place. It’s like event though your husband treats you like crap make sure you give him sex while you get nothing. He is the head of the household right? So should’nt he set the tone for the home.

  • Claire Colvin Claire Colvin says:

    Jean, I think you may have missed a line at the very beginning of this article. There’s a question right at the top that this article was written in response to. I wrote to women because the question was asked by a woman, not out of some belief that women hold all responsibility for fixing relational issues.

    I was surprised to read that you felt the wife had been asking for cuddling all along and that husbands “usually are selfish and stingy with affection”. That’s a very low opinion of men. If that has been your experience then I am sorry to hear it. It sounds like you may have had some experiences with differences in sex needs and that there may still be some pain and anger around this issue. If that resonates for you I’d encourage you to contact a mentor. You can use this short form and a mentor will respond, usually within a couple of days. (Mentoring is a free and private service.)

  • Jean -Wildcats and Trojans) says:

    Your comment: “Ladies, you may find that you don’t miss sex as your need for physical touch may be satisfied by cuddling and nursing your infant. Many husbands return to work after the birth and do not have as much contact with the baby. I know that you’re both tired, but he needs physical touch too. Cuddle your husband, kiss him and don’t forget to have sex.”

    See men, that is what is wrong with you men. You always focus a set of directives to the wife telling her what to do to fix an ailing relationship. You are to be balanced and give the men a set of directives. The wife has been seeking cuddling and affection from the husband all along, way before the baby was in the relationship. But then the husbands usually are selfish and stingy with affection and so the baby is born and gives the mother unconditional love and now the wife does not seek it from the husband She is not doing anything wrong. But you ought to be telling the men that they need to join in this affection time with his wife and baby and quit making everyrhing about hiumself.
    A man will not have to go to the hospital for medicine or surgery if he does not have sex every second of the day. Men need to put on their big boy pants and stop whining. You all know what I am talking about, like you tell us womrn we nag and complain!!!! :)

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