3 Tips for Boosting Romance — Even with a New Baby

Staying connected to your partner is tough even when there isn’t a crying newborn taking over precious hours of sleep each night. Add a needy baby to the mix and maintaining a healthy relationship can become one of the greatest challenges.

Whether you’re new parents or seasoned vets, make a commitment to pay much needed attention to your other half this Valentine’s Day. But, you may ask, Is it realistic to be kind and loving between diaper changes, feedings and insurmountable fatigue? According to relationship expert April Masini – the voice behind the “Ask April” advice column, the answer is “yes.”

Here, she shares three tips for boosting the romance in your relationship – even with a new babe.

1. Don’t let fatigue get the best of you. “You’re exhausted and you’ve probably lost your perspective on your behavior, so pre-empt any ignoring of your partner with a compliment that goes something like this: ‘I’m so exhausted, I know I’m not appreciating you and how wonderful you are. Please forgive me. I can’t wait to get some sleep and pay attention to you because you so deserve it, and I’m so lucky to have you,’” Masini says. “Believe me, a tired person needs this script. They can’t figure this out when they’re wiped out.”

2. Give a gift. “Pick up flowers, chocolates, or some other little gift as a way to say, ‘I appreciate you,’ so your partner remembers that you’re really a good person,” Masini suggests. “Do not attempt to cook a meal or purchase something complicated because you will fail under your exhaustion. Make it simple, but get the message across. One truffle speaks a thousand words.”

3. Make a plan. “You’ve got a new baby and you and/or your partner have had killer month at work, which means your sex life has flagged (read: is non-existent),” Masini says. “When you get to this point, take out your calendars and make a date for a weekend away from all that is stressing you, so you can sleep (first), then reconnect with time together on long walks, swimming, dining out, even having sex. Knowing this is on the calendar, even if it’s three or four weeks away, will thwart the sense that your marriage has changed permanently. It will give you a light at the end of the tunnel.