3 Ways Pregnancy Will Change Your Relationship With Your Husband

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Couple smiles at positive pregnancy test

When the pregnancy test shows two lines, each woman understands that her life will not be the same. Having a baby changes her body and relationship. 

In this article, you will learn how hormones can affect a pregnant woman’s behavior and how relationship paranoia in pregnancy can manifest. You will also read about how the difficulties of pregnancy can affect your partner!

How Pregnancy Affects Relationships

1. Mood swings and pregnancy hormones

During pregnancy, a woman’s hormone levels increase to prepare her body to support her baby. As a result, some changes can happen quickly, which often causes some stress, malaise, and emotional swings in the expectant mother.

An increase in estrogen (the happiness hormone) is responsible for emotional swings. In the first three months, it can exceed the norm by 100 times. When it interacts with serotonin, estrogen can cause emotional dysregulation. Because of this, a woman becomes emotionally sensitive. She may experience a feeling of insecurity in a relationship or a lack of support from a partner.

The hormone progesterone also increases rapidly during the first trimester. Progesterone is responsible for “relaxing” the body to prevent premature contractions of the uterus. That is why pregnant women may experience a lack of energy.

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2. A sense of obsession

Many women can not control their feelings during pregnancy. As a result, they may have obsessive behaviors and thoughts. And sometimes, they develop perinatal OCD (obsessive-compulsive disorder). In this case, expectant mothers need to consult a doctor and follow the pregnancy tips.

Due to these hormones, pregnant women can become clingy or needy or even develop a fear of being abandoned.

When a woman’s body changes rapidly during pregnancy, she may feel less attractive. Thus, a feeling of being neglected appears. Sometimes, it makes women demand inexplicable and strange requests from their partners. And men at this moment should be patient and understanding of their lovers.

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3. Sex might slow down

The intimate relationship with the husband during pregnancy will also change. Psychologists say physical contact can help partners develop an emotional bond, but it is worthwhile for pregnant women to consult a doctor first. There are several contraindications when pregnant women should avoid sex or specific positions.

Pregnant women also often find it challenging to tune in to romance in the first trimester. After all, they can feel sick, annoyed, or tired all day. The constantly growing belly also makes itself felt.

However, this does not mean that partners will not enjoy intimacy for more than nine months. Discussion of all sex-related nuances will help spouses to find the best option.

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Relationship problems while pregnant

During pregnancy, couples can sometimes have difficulties. However, with the right approach, partners can quickly come to an understanding.

Jealousy during pregnancy

Pregnant women can feel unhappy in relationships due to several restrictions that they have to follow. Expectant mothers should refuse alcohol, extreme entertainment, and parties for the sake of the child’s health.

Therefore, it is not surprising that sometimes pregnant women are a little jealous of their partners and their lives without taboos. If this is annoying, couples should discuss the rules of “joint restrictions.” In the end, both are responsible for the pregnancy.

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Partner could feel left out

Another relationship issue during pregnancy is that the partner may feel excluded. The expectant mother is in constant contact with the baby, literally feeling their every push. While the partner only gets to observe and briefly interact with the “belly occupant.”

To keep a partner from feeling left out, the pregnant woman should allow them to talk more with their belly, turn on their favorite music, sing, etc. It will bring them closer.

Interestingly, men can also experience some of the symptoms of pregnancy (Couvade syndrome). For example, they can feel sick, their ankles swell, their belly grows, and even breast milk appears! One of the reasons for this phenomenon, scientists say, is the desire of a man to be more attached to his child.

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Lack of empathy/understanding

Usually, there is only one pregnant partner in a couple. The second one can only imagine what it is like to bear and give birth. Even if the partner is a model of sensitivity and care, a woman, under the influence of hormones, may think, “I am pregnant and feel like my husband doesn’t love me."

There are many practical ways to avoid such thoughts and help understand what a pregnant woman goes through:

  1. Imitation of the pregnant belly with a watermelon. A man could tightly tie a watermelon to his stomach and carry it around during all his daily activities. It may seem easy at first, but try bending over to tie your shoelaces!
  2. Labor imitation. With the help of the transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation machine (TENS), men have the opportunity to experience the “delights” of labor.

After these experimentations, partners will definitely become more attentive, understanding, and caring.

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Relationship problems after having a baby

Family problems can occur not only during pregnancy but also after the birth of a child. Routine now depends on the child’s needs, which dictates new rules.

As a result, parents are often faced with:

  • Lack of time for yourself and your partner.

Caring for a baby takes a lot of time and effort, so a lonely trip to the supermarket can feel like a welcome journey. However, to get an equal share of free time, spouses should draw up a schedule for childcare, related activities, and spare time.

  • Different parenting styles.

Relationship stress can arise from a contradictory approach to parenting. For example, one may be more disturbed by the baby’s every movement, as the other gives the toddler more freedom. In matters of feeding, sleeping, and parenting methods, spouses should compromise and consult a pediatrician.

  • Changes in sex dynamics.

After the birth of a child, the spouses have less time for lovemaking. To re-establish an intimate life, spouses should plan sex and ensure no children in the bedroom. Getting ready for lovemaking will help partners get in the right mood and relax.

  • Money matters.

With childbirth, additional expenses appear in the family budget. And if one of the spouses loses their job at this moment, the couple will most likely have to control their costs closely.

Final Words

Childbirth is comparable to a miracle, a miracle that will turn your familiar world upside down. To make it easier for you and your partner to prepare for parenthood, you can take parenting classes in advance, read pregnancy books, and chat with expectant mothers. Also, do not forget to monitor your health and visit your family pediatrician regularly.

RELATED: The Truth About What Having Kids Will Do To Your Marriage

Natalie Maximets is a life transformation coach with expertise in clinical and existential psychology.

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