This is a summary of the conversation about the impact of children on the relationship Ajda had with dr. Veronika Podgoršek, a couples’ and family therapist. They have opened up many issues that are not talked about enough in society or we simply do not dare to ask them out loud. For example, how differently family preparations can take place, what role the father plays, and why the relationship between the partners changes completely after the arrival of the child.
The first turning point is the preparations for the child
Stress periods are often overlooked even before the baby arrives. Even then, there may be differences in the wishes of the partners, or both may want to have children, but cannot have them. These are strenuous trials that bring tiny frictions, and these can lead to an increasing distance of partners. "Despite the fact that they are working on a common connecting topic, it can strongly separate them," said dr. Podgoršek.
The arrival of a child turns every relationship upside down
After the arrival of the child, a completely new reality emerges in the relationship, no matter how long the partners have been together before. Both partners for each other and as a couple go into something completely new. Everything that was previously established is changing. They awaken new emotions, feelings, perhaps even unresolved matters from their own childhoods. Nature makes sure that their sensitivity increases so that they can better perceive and understand the needs of the child. As a result, the sensitivity in their relationship also increases, which can seriously jeopardize it.
Unfortunately, we know of quite a few cases of divorce around a child’s first or second year. This is due to potentiated problems, a different rhythm, and the extra stress that the child brings. The partners respond to all this in their own way; as a result, they both feel unheard, misunderstood, alone, and scared. After all, the child comes without instructions and you are left alone with them.
First year important mom, what about dad?
After the arrival of the child, the role of the father is also extremely important. Perhaps in the first year, the maternal role seems to be at the forefront - in terms of breastfeeding and feeding. However, there is no way to neglect the father and conclude that he therefore has less parental competence. The father enters into a symbiotic relationship between mother and child, he has to give the feeling that the child is wanted, desirable. He has to collaborate with mom and make sure she feels good too.
"It is true, however, that women often push men away on their own, and at the same time we resent them for not helping us. This is about the psychic structure of a frightened woman who has a sense of her own inferiority and therefore drives a man away. Because she feels threatened, she would like to do everything, but on the other hand, she claims that she is alone for everything. Many people are used to clenching their teeth, showing a beautiful picture on the outside, and suffering on the inside, ” Podgorškova explained.
There is nothing wrong with admitting that we simply cannot do everything on our own and asking for help.
“On the other hand, we also have men who avoid involvement in the father role,” she explained. “Such is, for example, a man who comes home after work, sits down on the couch and tells his partner that he has been working (and will now rest). The woman is then left alone with a sense of abandonment and rejection. ” These are great germs for postpartum depression that many moms experience.
The key to success is solidarity, support and cooperation
It is important to be aware that a child has both parents who bear the same responsibility for him. When a woman hears her partner say, “I’ll help you,” her red alarm light should turn on. In a healthy parental relationship, it is not about the help of the father to the mother, but about the cooperation of both. When solidarity and support disappear, the partnership is slowly lost; this, in turn, can lead to distress that causes each partner to go in their own direction.
What is the ideal difference in the age of the children?
Is it better for a relationship to have children closer together or a few years apart? "There is no real recipe, but we must be aware that love with every next child is doubled and not halved," assured the experienced guest, who also has four children. It's good to wait a year or two just for a woman's body to recover.
The more children are similar in age, the more they can play. However, children with larger age differences may resemble only children. Finally, Podgoršek pointed out the trap that parents often fall into. “At different ages, care must be taken not to blame the older child for everything and not to give him too much responsibility that he cannot even accept. When we set boundaries for the younger one, the older one becomes aware of an extremely important fact - that the mother's love for him and his brother or sister is equal. "
Children transform a partnership in one way or another
So the children in our lives are opening a wonderful new chapter. They transform the partnership into a family and actively participate in building the maternal and paternal role. We can take comfort in the fact that babies are tiring, but even later periods are not entirely easy. They are just different and bring with them different challenges.
It is important that parents, despite many difficult situations, try to stay as connected as possible, communicate a lot and stand by each other during all periods.