Valentine's Advice for the Over-Extended Mom.
by Joanna Zucker
Becoming a mother can be a difficult transition. You go from being a newlywed or at worst a couple with lots of freedom (regarding time and often finances) to having another human being 100% dependant on you for survival. While this transition is done by millions of women each year it is still a tough one. If you are like most women you power through it, ask for advice, read a lot and go about your way. Then you return back to work and manage that transition on top of being a new mom, you are now trying to figure out how to be a working mom. As you are figuring out all these new things and transition, your husband may be wondering “where did my wife go?”
Where did you go? You feel like you have gone on a roller coaster. Your hormones have had so many ups and downs from pre-natal vitamins, to birth and recovery, to breastfeeding if you chose that route. In my case I ran this cycle three times back to back, for four and a half straight years! I don’t think my ovaries knew who they were and what I was doing to them. I almost wished for a monthly cycle and period just so I had an excuse to be moody or at least knew when my bad mood was coming! After Sarah my third was born, I remember my doctor giving me the normal speech at your one week checkup about “and no sex for four weeks” and it took every ounce of strength I had to not laugh out loud. Like that was going to happen with a three year old, eighteen month old and newborn…hah.
But you quickly realize, be it your first, second or third, that you must make time for your husband and sex. His body has not gone through all these changes or fluctuations and well, he is still a man. And no matter how tired you are, or how not in the mood you are, HE IS…OFTEN. So you need to do whatever it takes to not forget about him and his sexual needs as you manage the transition. I remember I would always think to myself, when it the last time we had sex, and if it was around a week ago I would make myself get in the mood. For some reason I felt like going longer than a week was just awful and mean to my husband. I remember a friend of mine saying “we all “take” our Saturday naps, and thank god for them.” That is how she and her husband found their time to be intimate.
The key is to find the time and to foster your relationship, as it is the most important one in the house. Given it is Valentine’s season I thought I would provide some easy tips to get you started. My first tip is to just talk to one another, like you used to when all that mattered in the world was each other. Find a time in the day that is your time as a couple. This will vary based on the schedules of your children, often dictated by their age. But whether it is early morning before they wake up, commuting together, late evenings, or coffee after dinner make sure to catch up and talk as a couple. Always remember that this person is your best friend and partner and having time to talk each day allows them to be both. As you talk to each other don’t forget the simple things like saying ‘thank you’ and tell them what a great dad or mom they are. In the midst of tantrums, bad days at work and mountains of laundry nothing is better than hearing how much you are loved and appreciated.