Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Tired Mummy, Tired Daddy

Life as a new parent can be exhausting and emotionally challenging, as well as a joyous time.

So here is a scenario, baby is bathed and in bed, the first glass of wine is poured and you are ready for a chat and relax on the sofa - and a little love and support from Dad......

 ...thinking you deserve a back rub or foot massage you move in for a little pat on the back, and guess what.....he's just as tired as you, if not more tired.

Don't think you are alone in this scenario, talk to any new parent and you'll notice the same tired feeling.

Mum is at home keeping baby fed, watered and entertained and of course fitting a touch of home-making in between the demands of a new born.

Dad is at work, facing the demands a job that throws at him - also exhausted from broken nights. Dads feel their efforts are not appreciated and their partners are less than sympathetic because they are just as tired. It can become a competitive cycle.

To be fair, both sides have their point. Mum feels its dad's turn, as soon as he comes through the door, dad feels he needs to wind down after a long day.

Here are some tips on coping with the tiredness:

Stop - try and put yourself in your partner's shoes and at least listen to their point of view.

Mood - try and find a time when you are both in a reasonable mood - possibly the weekend when you've had a chance to wind down a little. Talk through the issues - is the problem sleepless nights, unfair division of chores etc.  Try to be constructive - listening first, then come up with ideas between yourselves. 

Be nice - kindness begets kindness.  Do something nice for your partner to show you appreciate him - your kindness may inspire them to return the favour. Remember as much as we like to think our partners instinctively know what we want - it is often not the case. If you want him to run you a bath and make you a warm drink - tell him.  We can't all be married to Derren Brown!

Look forward - plan a night off, or a weekend away - give yourself some light at the end of the tunnel.  Our advice would be to avoid a beach holiday with a young baby - you'll probably spend all your time trying to avoid the sun and do we need to mention sandy nappies.......

Perspective - try and keep it - do the socks really need ironing? 

Me time - try and create a little me time for both parents.  Take a look at the New Parent Survival Gift for a gift that helps get the whole family through the early days of parenthood.

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