Date Night for New Parents

Postpartum DepressionIf you have recently had a child, it is likely that your life has done a complete 180. There is a new little person in you and your partner’s life which will be a source of much happiness from here on out.  However, what about your relationship with your partner? With all the midnight feedings, diapers and laundry currently keeping your iCal filled, a date night out with your partner may seem like an un-scheduleable event.

Spending time together on a date is important into thriving in the transition to parenthood. Granted, your dating priorities have most likely changed, which is normal. You will be more likely to talk about what your new baby is eating verses what the two of you will be ordering at the restaurant. In this case, it is often that we can feel worried or overwhelmed, but with some prior date planning, you can put your worries to rest and enjoy the quality time that the two of you deserve with one another.

The Right Babysitter – Finding a trustworthy babysitter may be the best thing you can do to alleviate your stress about leaving your baby for the evening. On your first date night out, you may feel most comfortable asking your mother/mother-in-law/close friend to do the babysitting duties (it is likely that they will be over the moon to spend time with their new little friend). The most important thing is that you find someone that you trust. Allow plenty of time to show them the ropes – even the grandparents, as baby products have changed throughout the years and some of these products may be unknown to an elder generation. Another great tip is to schedule the specific time that you will call to check in, as you do not want to be rushing home in a panic just because your sitter missed the call due to rocking the baby to sleep.

Scheduled Feedings – If you are bottle-feeding, make sure you leave the sitter with a sufficient amount of formula or pumped breast milk. Also leave clear instructions about how to warm it up, and have the bottles with the nipples that match handy. If you’re breastfeeding and have yet to use a bottle, you will probably want to nurse right before you leave and as soon as you return home. You may want to time your date so it falls between regular nursing sessions.

Release Guilt – Feelings of guilt about leaving your child are common amongst first-time parents. Many parents feel bad about taking any kind of break, as if they should not want to be away from their new baby. However, it is perfectly okay — and human — to need a break. The time away will recharge you and give you more energy for you and your baby in the long run. Also, your child will only benefit from your strong, connected relationship in your partnership.

By following these tips, you are more likely to have a success date night and some much need time for your relationship, which can only help your child and family in the long run.

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