Addressing conflicts

When you have a baby there are countless things to worry about. What type of laundry soap should you use for their clothing?  What diapers are best for the baby? The worries even extend to should the baby be sent to daycare or should one of us stay home? Then there is the ever-present issue of breastfeeding versus formula. The questions are endless and the answers are many, but one important thing that often gets forgotten in the pursuit of raising a happy child is the relationship with your partner.

With all the decisions to make it is not uncommon to have conflicts arise when you add a new person to your relationship dynamic, especially when this little person has so many needs.  Combine that with a lack of sleep and it is a “perfect storm” for an argument.

When this occurs it is important to keep in mind the following:

  • Avoid planning your response before the person speaking has finished speaking.

  • Avoid using negative words and phrases.

  • Avoid negative body language (i.e. having your arms crossed, rolling your eyes, etc.)

And the number one thing I have seen cause great conflict between couples is…

  • Avoid using text or email to express important matters, this often leads to miscommunication due to the inability to get tone and body language across.

Most importantly, if the topic needing to be discussed is too much to talk about now (i.e. you can feel you blood pressure rise as the conversation goes on or the baby is crying in the background), make sure you take time to cool down and talk about it when you both are calm and can listen to what the other person has to say.

Having a baby is hard work, but is so much easier when you have a partner you are able to communicate effectively with.  It is important to make time for each other and take the time to talk about what is going on with the baby, in your home, and with each other.