6 Things to Discuss With Your Partner Before Baby Arrives – Solly Baby

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6 Things to Discuss With Your Partner Before Baby Arrives

6 Things to Discuss With Your Partner Before Baby Arrives

There are so many things about having a baby that you can’t prepare for, that it's really helpful to get a handle on the ones you can. Simply opening up the conversation about these topics makes a difference—even if you don't quite have all the answers yet.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀

Consider these questions as prompts to get you started. Needs and concerns will almost certainly vary from family to family, but these topics are a good place to begin.  

P.S. If baby’s already here, it’s not too late! Chat through the topics that are relevant now instead. Opening up the lines of communication is what’s key. 

Distribution of household duties
You probably already have a system for who cooks, empties the dishwasher, folds the laundry, etc. but adding a baby to your family dynamic will bring additional duties (those pump parts don't clean themselves unfortunately). Think through what feels most sustainable for each of you moving forward. Since you'll both be spending more of your time tending to the needs of your little one, you might also consider outsourcing some tasks for the time being, such as cleaning or lawn care. 

Questions to talk through: How might your roles need to shift once baby arrives? Who will handle baby’s laundry? Washing bottles? Pump parts? What tasks could be outsourced if necessary? What invisible work might need to be accounted for?

Boundaries with visitors and family
Your loved ones are likely so thrilled to have a new tiny member of the family, and that excitement might come with expectations of when and how they'll meet baby. Think through your own needs and expectations for those first few weeks/months with baby, then decide which of you will communicate those expectations with who. 

Questions to talk through: Would you like visitors in the hospital? Will family members come to help postpartum? How long will they stay? Are there any concerns you can address in advance? Who will be in charge of communicating with who? What about drop-in guests? Who will field questions from family and friends about how they can help?

Sleep schedules
There's no way around it, early days with a newborn are exhausting. And though parents somehow find superhero strength to manage on very little sleep, having a plan for what happens when you're both beyond tired is helpful. 

Questions to talk through: How can you feel supported in your need for rest? Depending on your feeding system, are there opportunities for each partner to help feed and change baby during the night? Are there times when you know your partner will be available that you can prioritize sleep? What are some shortcuts (freezer meals, Uber Eats, taking up friends and family on offers to come hold baby while you nap) you can take when exhaustion sets in?

You'll feel a lot of things in those postpartum days, but with sleepless nights, leaky breasts, and a body in recovery, sexy might not be one of them. It may take a while before you feel ready to be intimate with your partner again. Talking through postpartum intimacy expectations is important beforehand, and just as important as you navigate them in real time. 

Questions to talk through: How can you stay connected as you heal postpartum? What gestures outside of the bedroom make you feel loved and cared for? What challenges might your new circumstances bring? How can you both best prepare for them?

Parental leave and childcare
Your work plays a huge role in your adjustment to a new family member. Talk through what parental leave looks like for both of you if you work outside of the home. Consider what childcare needs you may have based on your parental leave. Start talking through childcare options well in advance, since many daycares have waitlists or don't accept babies under six months old. 

Questions to talk through: Do either of you get parental leave? Will you take it at the same time or separately? What ideally do you want your leave to look like? What will your child care plan be if you’re both returning to work? What might it look like if one of you wants to stay home?

Social media
Social media can be a great tool for keeping loved ones connected to your new little one, but it's good to think through what boundaries you want to have with it—if any. Consider not only the photos and details you feel comfortable showing up on your personal social media, but what you feel comfortable with family and friends sharing as well. 

Questions to talk through: What are you comfortable sharing on social media? Are there certain photos or details that you’d prefer to keep private? Would you like to take some time as a family before sharing news of baby’s arrival? How much? Is there anyone you’d like to tell personally first?

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