#UsAfterYou – featuring Mum Muddling Through

relationships after a baby

Did having a baby change your relationship? Of course it did!

I’m excited to launch this new #UsAfterYou guest post series, where each week I’ll be asking one of my favourite bloggers to share their experience of what having a baby has meant for their relationship. I’m thrilled to kick it off with the brilliantly talented and always relatable Mum Muddling Through. I couldn’t have put it better myself…

Mum Muddling ThroughIt’s inevitable that having a baby changes a relationship. I remember clearly someone giving me some of that oh so useful, classic unwanted pre-baby advice, that there’s no way you can love your husband as much once you are completely and utterly devoted to the child you created together.

Just as all couples are different before having babies, so are all couples afterwards. No one can tell you how it will affect you, although If you don’t change at all you’re probably in a very tiny minority. That person was wrong, for the record.

There is no getting away from the fact that life as you know it will be a distant memory. The spontaneous late nights, lazing in bed till midday, having ample free time to pursue own interests as well as having plenty of time for each other; it will be on hold for a while.

UsBeforeYou: Glastonbury

UsAfterYou: In the Night Garden live

UsBeforeYou: Tequila slammers

UsAfterYou: Tea two sugars

UsBeforeYou: Romantic Weekend in Brussells

UsAfterYou: Caravanning Weekend in Bognor

UsBeforeYou: Partying all weekend
UsAfterYou: Kids Parties every weekend

But, It’s certainly not all bad. Seeing the man you love become a wonderful giving Father will probably tip your love for him off the scales. And vice versa, of course.

Given that your social life will now consist mainly of each other’s company, it’s truly never more important than ever that you procreated with the right one.

Mr G and I are far from perfect. We bicker, often in front of the children, and feel horrendously guilty about it afterwards. We bear the brunt of each others stresses, bad moods, tiredness; but it is quickly forgotten.

We have dreams of lazy family days indoors which in reality too often become a game of ‘whose turn is it to watch the kids’ while the other does something they really want to get on with. We say yes to enough social invites to use up all our babysitting tokens, and haven’t the nerve to ask someone to watch the kids just so we can have us time.

We realise we need to make more of our evenings, to feel like we are spending quality time together indoors, which is so much easier talked about than done. So, this often consists of a weekend takeaway and sharing a bottle of wine or a beer.

In reality, the hardest thing about keeping the sparkle in a marriage post kids, is the lack of energy we both have. After a day working in London / being at home with the girls, coupled with a broken night and 5am start, it’s a big ask to sum up the enthusiasm to be full of beans, smiles and laughter, and play a board game or some other ‘non telly’ activity 😉 The biggest appeal is way too often a hot bath and early night…for all the wrong reasons.

relationship after a baby

One thing is for sure. I couldn’t have done this with anyone else. I wouldn’t want to have done this with anyone else. Having a family of our own, and the ups and downs that go with it, have cemented the foundations of our unit. Our lives have changed beyond recognition, but we are still the same crazy big kids under it all. We are a team. We laugh together, despair together; we have become real grown ups together. We adore each other, and have happily accepted our quieter domesticated existence together. After all, we wanted this more than anything, together.

We share joy in not only our children’s milestones, watching their smiles, but also, still, in each other’s successes, achievements and selfless acts for each other, however simple.

We had this reading at our wedding, by Louis de Bernieres, from Captain Correllis Mandolin which, little did we know then, summed it up perfectly…

Love is a temporary madness,

it erupts like volcanoes and then subsides.

And when it subsides you have to make a decision.

You have to work out whether your roots have so entwined together that it is inconceivable that you should ever part.

Because this is what love is.

Love is not breathlessness, it is not excitement,

it is not the promulgation of promises of eternal passion.

That is just being in love, which any fool can do.  Love itself is what

is left over when being in love has burned away, and this is both an art and a fortunate accident.

Those that truly love have roots that grow towards each other underground,

and, when all the pretty blossoms have fallen from their branches,

they find that they are one tree and not two.

You can follow Mum Muddling Through on Twitter, Google +, Instagram and Pinterest.

How did your relationship change after having children?

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34 Comment

  1. Reply
    Coombe Mill - Fiona Cambouropoulos
    December 13, 2015 at 12:40 am

    What lovely thoughtful words and so much truth #KCACOLS

    1. Reply
      Mum in Brum
      December 13, 2015 at 10:21 pm

      I think every parent can relate to this – relationships do change for sure, but there are so many things about each other you appreciate so much more.

  2. Reply
    December 13, 2015 at 3:19 am

    The reading from Captain Corelli’s Mandolin is just gorgeous. There’s no relationship quite like that we have with the one we choose to live with, and maybe pro-create with. Kids certainly add an extra dimension – more stress and more love at the same time 🙂 #KCACOLS
    Robyn recently posted…FINDING MOTIVATIONMy Profile

    1. Reply
      Mum in Brum
      December 13, 2015 at 10:23 pm

      I completely agree! Kids definitely make things a lot more interesting! More stressful sometimes, but it’s all totally worth it x

  3. Reply
    December 13, 2015 at 10:05 am

    Thanks so much for the guest post opportunity Natalie! Good luck with the series x x x
    Mummuddlingthrough recently posted…#coolmumclub: Meet the Members…Single Mum SpeaksMy Profile

    1. Reply
      Mum in Brum
      December 13, 2015 at 10:26 pm

      So great to have you as the first guest post – you’ve totally nailed it! xxx

  4. Reply
    Mommy's Little Princesses
    December 13, 2015 at 8:41 pm

    Oh word that is such a beautiful and powerful reading! This post really does sum up how ones life changes after we have children. Xx #KCACOLS
    Mommy’s Little Princesses recently posted…My Sunday Photo #40 – Because you can never have enough friends…My Profile

    1. Reply
      Mum in Brum
      December 13, 2015 at 10:28 pm

      I agree – the reading sums it up perfectly. I remember reading the book years ago but the words probably weren’t so relevant back then – before marriage and children! xx

  5. Reply
    December 15, 2015 at 9:04 am

    That reading is beautiful and definitely sums up what being married is like. Can definitely relate to this post, I love my husband so much more now that he is the father of my child, not the other way around. I think some relationships do go bad after children but they would probably have ended at some point any way. xx #Twinklytuesday
    wendy recently posted…A night at the adult pantoMy Profile

  6. Reply
    December 15, 2015 at 9:04 am

    That reading is beautiful and definitely sums up what being married is like. Can definitely relate to this post, I love my husband so much more now that he is the father of my child, not the other way around. I think some relationships do go bad after children but they would probably have ended at some point any way. xx #Twinklytuesday
    wendy recently posted…A night at the adult pantoMy Profile

    1. Reply
      Mum in Brum
      December 23, 2015 at 10:06 am

      I agree – having children brings you closer together as a team. Obviously you have to forsake certain aspects of your life before children, but if you support each other, having a child together is so rewarding on so many levels x

  7. Reply
    December 15, 2015 at 7:54 pm

    This is so true and I can totally relate to most of the points. Life certainly does change in so many ways, but for the better – being a parent is the best thing! #twinklytuesday

  8. Reply
    John Adams
    December 15, 2015 at 9:54 pm

    “Couldn’t have done this without anyone else” That, I think, sums up everything. Kids have a huge impact on your relationship. It’s not all bad, far from it, but I couldn’t imagine raising two kids with anyone else. #TwinklyTuesday
    John Adams recently posted…Storytellers; Sainsbury’s childhood literacy campaignMy Profile

    1. Reply
      Mum in Brum
      December 23, 2015 at 10:08 am

      I think as long as you have the right partner and a strong relationship beforehand, having children together can be so rewarding as you share in so many fun times and create so many precious memories together.

  9. Reply
    Unhinged Mummy (aka Janine Woods)
    December 16, 2015 at 9:45 am

    Oh this is such a lovely heartwarming post. I especially love the poem at the end. It’s so easy just to take each other for granted after having kids and my husband and I are certainly guilty of having early nights for all the wrong reasons. We are both so exhausted after dealing with the kids that we rarely make time for each other and your post has reminded me that this needs to change.

    Unhinged Mummy (aka Janine Woods) recently posted…Play Therapy And The EHCPMy Profile

    1. Reply
      Mum in Brum
      December 23, 2015 at 10:10 am

      I think we are all guilty of not making enough time for each other- it is so hard when you have kids. But at the same time, you share a different type of bond together and create memories as a family. But every couple does need a bit of ‘us time’ every now and again! x

  10. Reply
    December 16, 2015 at 9:53 am

    I’m sure most parents would be nodding as they read your post. It does get better though and what a beautiful part of your relationship – creating a child. I’m all for loving and nurturing your children but you also have to do the same for your relationship which I know is easy to say when you are both ragged. I’m sure you have given other new parents support and hope. Stopping by from Way Wow Link UP

    1. Reply
      Mum in Brum
      December 23, 2015 at 10:12 am

      Completely agree Sue – it is hard, but every relationship does need a little bit of nurturing, alongside our children. If we can get the balance right then we are all winning! x

  11. Reply
    December 16, 2015 at 10:47 am

    I love the poem at the end! And all is so true and really well put! Although, easier times are ahead I must say! My girls are 10 & 6 now and becoming more independent and we can now all enjoy certain things together. Travelling is a lot easier and they are interested in museums and all that, so it’s really fun with them! But of course we do have the times where everyone wines and is a pain in the bum and family life is just stressful! LoL. I enjoyed reading this !!!
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    1. Reply
      Mum in Brum
      December 23, 2015 at 10:13 am

      It is so hard when you have babies to imagine them ever growing up and being independent little beings! But I imagine it does get easier as they start to develop their own interests that the whole family can enjoy. x

  12. Reply
    December 17, 2015 at 9:13 am

    Its lovely to hear about other people’s experiences. I accidentally found myself as a single mum. We had separated before I found out I was pregnant, tried to make it work but it just didn’t and we finished permanently 2 weeks after she was born. A story for another day, but lovely idea for a series
    Katie recently posted…Alyssa’s Arrival: SCBU and AllMy Profile

    1. Reply
      Mum in Brum
      December 23, 2015 at 10:17 am

      Thanks Katie. I really do have so much respect for single mums after having my own baby – before having a child it’s not something I ever gave much thought to. I found it such hard work in the first couple of months, even with the help of the hubby and I often wondered how single mums cope – so well done to you! I’d love to hear your story in the series if it’s something you wouldn’t mind sharing? Obviously totally understand if you’d prefer not to xx

      1. Reply
        December 30, 2015 at 3:15 pm

        Hi! I’d be happy to share my experience with you no worries. It is what it is. Pop me an email and let me know what you want to know or if you need me to note some stuff down or whatever. Happy to be a part of a lovely series xx

  13. Reply
    December 17, 2015 at 10:21 am

    I love this series and glad I’ll be following in Sarah’s lovely footsteps shortly. I totally agree – having a family is a massive test but really does cement your foundations. Thanks for linking this up to #coolmumclub lovely xx
    Talya recently posted…Welcome to the #coolmumclub…week 11!My Profile

  14. Reply
    December 17, 2015 at 8:29 pm

    Popping back again from #coolmumclub…and just catching up on the lovely comments. Thanks again Natalie for the opportunity x x
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  15. Reply
    Caroline (Becoming a SAHM)
    December 18, 2015 at 8:01 am

    Such a great post and so so true. Relationships totally change when you have kids and are put under so much strain. It doesn’t have to be a bad thing though if you are in it together but it’s no surprise that weak relationships can and do falter with the added strain. I love that quote and must remember it more as it is 100% true. Beautiful xx #bestandworst
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  16. Reply
    Mummy here and there
    December 18, 2015 at 1:16 pm

    It’s a major change so eefinately rocks the relationship but can bring you together as a team. X #BestandWorst

  17. Reply
    Life as Mum
    December 18, 2015 at 5:42 pm

    This is a great post. A relationship sure does change once a baby arrives. But sometimes for the best. Me and my partner had a lot of arguments because I had post natal depression but I am better now. It does put a lot of strain on our relationship, we don’t do things we did before, simply because we cant. But we wouldn’t change it any other way. We still love eachother just as much from the start.
    Thanks for linking up to #justanotherlinky
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  18. Reply
    Something Crunchy Mummy
    December 18, 2015 at 7:51 pm

    I can relate to this and reading it made me thankful I’m not alone. That reading is beautiful. Thanks for linking up to #justanotherlinky xx
    Something Crunchy Mummy recently posted…The A – Z Of MeMy Profile

  19. Reply
    A Moment with Franca
    December 19, 2015 at 11:14 am

    This is so true! After you get married things definitely change and they will never be the same but they will be even better as now you have a bigger reason to achieve goals, to fight and keep going. This is a great post series #USafteryou and I’m really looking forward to be part of it in January! Well done with the idea lovely!! Thanks so much for sharing this at #KCACOLS! I hope you join me again tomorrow for the last #KCACOLS of 2015!!! 🙂 xx
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  20. Reply
    My Petit Canard
    December 20, 2015 at 10:09 pm

    What a lovely post. The poem was just so spot on, as well as the post itself. I agree with so many, if not all of these points. Things do change once you have children, but we’ve discovered and discussed, the husband and I, that it is definitely for the better. Despite all the tiredness, exhaustion and challenges, life is happier and sweeter this way. Its cliche I know, but we would change it or have it any other way :-). Thanks for linking up to #MarvMondays. Emily
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  21. Reply
    Nikki Frank-Hamilton
    December 24, 2015 at 1:49 am

    Natalie, this is such a great series, it will give hope to parents, let them see that they aren’t the only ones who are nodding off in their dinner plate instead of snuggling up in front of the television to watch a movie with their spouse after the kids are finally down for bed. Gone are the visions of sharing a glass of wine, in front of the fire, enjoying each other’s company. Especially when you both fall asleep during the first commercial break to the sound of the little one crying out for mom! LOL It certainly does change things, but I agree, I wouldn’t want to do this with anyone else and the time will come where we’re not as exhausted. LOL It will come! Someday.
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    1. Reply
      Mum in Brum
      January 18, 2016 at 7:55 pm

      I think sometimes we think every other parent is managing so much better than us – and this applies to relationships too. But I don’t believe any parent who says that they aren’t shattered all the time and find it more difficult to make time with their partner – it goes hand in hand. But yes, we get through it together and I can say from my perspective it’s got so much easier as time has gone on and we’ve worked out what works best for us both and for Taylor x

  22. Reply
    Sarah Howe (@RunJumpScrap)
    December 29, 2015 at 1:07 pm

    This is such an amazing post and the poem at the end so sums it all up. You change, everything changes. You are knackered but ultimately happy and you have to make that effort. I feel things have changed but at the same time feel like it has always been the way it is now. Thanks for sharing with #bestandworst and see you soon x
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