Tag Archives: new parents
Hillary Duff and her husband, Mike Comrie recently became new parents. Hillary has been a mother for less than a month but she has more insight and self-awareness than I had after six (OK, twelve) months of motherhood! Continue reading
On any given weekend in millions of homes across globe, wives stand in front of their husbands listing all of the selfless acts they have performed in the last week: “I paid all the bills, bought a birthday present for your mother, read Goodnight Moon five times, took four six-year-olds to Chuck-E-Cheese . . . and that was just Tuesday. . . .”
The husbands return fire: “Excuse me, but did I not make the kids breakfast every morning last week, including the morning it made me late for my presentation, when I really should have gone in early? And I picked up the dry cleaning without being asked, and I did bath duty three times last week. What more do you want?”
A volley of personal accomplishments and sacrifices ensues. Not exactly what we thought life would be like when we eyed each other across the room all those years ago, is it? Continue reading
After living much of our pre-parenthood lives as relative equals, it comes as a surprise when, post-baby, men and women start to assume different and not always complementary roles. Our instincts nudge women into the role of nurturers and men into the role of providers. When we become parents our most basic instincts rise to the surface. We find ourselves back in the prehistoric suburbs, where women wonder if baby might be allergic to mammoth and if there are enough wild berries in his diet, and where men stalk buffalo and question whether their hunting abilities will be good enough to get the family through the winter.
It’s like our brains get completely rewired, running two separate “his and her” programs, but for good reason. Both programs are equally important for the survival and well-being of the baby. She focuses on the micro, the day-to-day development of the baby, while he focuses on the macro, providing food and shelter for the baby.
In simple terms, she has The Mommy Chip, while he has Provider Panic.
During the newborn stage, new parents resort to all manner of fun and games to keep themselves amused during this difficult time. One of our personal favorites is called Midnight Chicken, also known as Who Will Blink First? It goes something like this: It’s 3:00 a.m. The baby is awake (again) and crying (again). You are both awake. You both hear her. But nobody moves. Women are tacitly calling in their chit (Surely he knows it’s his turn this time?), but men, the masters of this game, simply play dead (maybe they throw in a little snoring). Continue reading
This period is short, but it can be savage. As new parents, we often experience fear, extreme sleep deprivation and cluelessness. We wind up bickering more than ever before. It’s like we just entered The Twilight Zone. Why? The answer is simple. There is a newborn in the house.
Yes, we’ve already posted a video talking about The Mother of All Solutions – The Training Weekend. Go away for the weekend and leave your husband alone with the baby for 48 hours. No sitters. No in-laws. No cavalry whatsoever. The point is to let him figure things out for himself. He doesn’t get it because he hasn’t done it! We now want to discuss why it is such an important tool when it comes to babyproofing your marriage.
The benefits of a Training Weekend are many and varied:
Mom gets a break. If Mama ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy. So give yourself a little girl time or alone time. Everyone, including you, will benefit from your well-rested, recharged self.
“I didn’t know I needed it until I had it. Boy, did I need it!”
—Valerie, married 7 years, 2 kids.
Dad understands. By taking sole charge of all baby- and house-related duties for a weekend, a man will better understand his wife’s challenges and frustrations. He will have the same sink-or-swim experience that she has. If he wants to take shortcuts by not feeding a full meal, or leaving dirty diapers all over the floor, for once, he will have to deal with the consequences. He learns because there’s no other way out. Just a small glimpse into this “real world” will improve your communication level and your ability to work together as a team on the home front.
“I had a list of things I wanted to get done when I had the kids by myself, and I was lucky if half of it got done. I didn’t shower and I didn’t shave. I could barely hold things together. It gave me an enormous appreciation for what my wife does. This was eight years ago and I remember it like it was yesterday.”
—George, married 13 years, 2 kids.
“I had no idea taking care of a baby was so hard. How does she do this day in and day out? I was truly in awe of her when she got back.”
—Brandon, married 3 years, 1 kid.