I’ve recently begun a new course course called Becoming Us, with Elly Taylor from Australia, and I’m so excited to begin sharing what I’m learning both here on my blog, and with the couples I see for counselling.
Did you know that pregnancy and early parenthood is a prime time to bond with your partner? Your body is producing oxytocin, aka “the love hormone”, and this makes you more likely to feel close to your growing baby and to your partner (emotionally, even if not physically, because let’s be honest, pregnancy can also make you feel gross). After giving birth, both partners experience hormonal changes that promote bonding with your new baby, and with each other. This is what makes you ripe for attachment building with your partner during the transition to parenthood.
Pregnancy is a great time for a relationship check-up
It can be surprising to many couples, especially mothers, to learn that not all aspects of parenthood come easily or naturally. A difficult birth, sleepless nights, and feeding issues can all put stress on your relationship. Taking the time to strengthen your bond with your partner now can set you up for success in those early days, when everything is new and overwhelming.
You may feel like your relationship is just fine, thank you very much, and it probably is! However, attending even a handful of sessions of couples counselling can help you work out your expectations of yourselves and each other before your baby arrives.
As parents, it’s critical to nurture our relationship. Because parenting is hard! And stress in your relationship only makes it harder. In our society where we’ve lost the “village” mentality of coming together to support new families, where parenthood is no longer considered a rite of passage, we’re now often left with our partners as our main allies in parenting, and even that can feel tenuous when we’re balancing hectic work schedules, recovering from birth, and for some, parenting our older children as well.
So consider using these hormonal changes to your benefit. Take opportunities to turn towards each other and strengthen your bond with your partner.
If you’re ready to do a relationship check-up before your baby arrives, or even if your baby is already here, contact me today to schedule an appointment.