As I finish the first month of having a newborn baby, I congratulate myself and my partner Andy on not killing each other. We survived the first 4 weeks, so we can survive the rest right?
It’s inevitable that you are going to be sleep deprived if you have a young child. They don’t want to sleep through the night, so neither can you. Hopefully you will be able to use these 5 tips to make the sleep deprivation a little bit easier.
1. Take it in turns to do the night feeds
This may seem really obvious but it’s harder than you think! The first few weeks we were both up at the same time taking care of her, getting used to taking care of a small human. We slowly learnt that this wasn’t healthy for either of us and the bags under our eyes grew larger every day. We eventually agreed (I told him) that we were taking it in turns to feed, change and take care of our baby.
Don’t get me wrong, there is still a downside to this. If you partner like me suffers with male selective hearing then you will often be woken up by your baby crying whilst your partner continues to sleep peacefully, even snoring! Some women may just take this on the chin, but I have to kick Andy a few times to tell him it’s his turn to feed Pippa.
I even reward myself with a cup of tea during night feeds (I mean there are better rewards out there, but gin is frowned upon at 3am unless your on a night out).
2. Let go – it’s not a competition
The ongoing argument that still goes on to this day “NO I’m more tired than you… NO I am”. At the end of the day we are both tired, I mean some of us don’t get to have lie ins, but we are both tired! Andy will often take care of Pippa whilst I do blog-admin/youtube videos so we both get our chance..
However other trivial arguments, the ones you don’t have until you live together e.g. the washing is still in the washing machine, you promised to drop those letters off, why are your boxers in the dining room? The arguments that all couples have seem 10x worse when you’re sleep deprived. So if you can, let it go that he didn’t thank you for that early morning cup of tea or didn’t put the washing out because there are things that you do that will be inventialbly winding him up too.
3.Don’t make grand plans
The first week out of hospital I went a bit stir crazy been stuck in the house with Andy and Pippa. As much as I loved them both, our house is not big enough to be around each other all the time. I proceeded to make grand plans of days out, seeing friends and friends visiting from afar. I will tell you now, DON’T DO IT, because you will exhaust yourself and fall asleep half way through a fajita at your friends house.
Everyone is very understanding when you have had a baby so don’t make these grand plans for at least a few weeks. Well at least learn how the pram works first… google is a wonderful thing!
4. Sleep when you can (if you can)
This tip did not help me because I already had insomnia before the baby arrived. If you can try get 20 minute naps when your baby is sleeping. It will make you feel more human and less like you want to shove your head into a cake.
5. Have time by yourself
If like me or not like me, you can’t sleep and your baby is only sleeping when held by you then don’t feel guilty to ask for some time to yourself. It can be a 10 minute cup of tea in another room watching youtube videos or going out for lunch with friends whilst your partner or family takes care of your little one. It will do you the wonder of good to have some time to relax.
REMEMBER nobody said having a baby was easy, but we wouldn’t swap it for the world.
If none of these help, there is always energy drinks and concealer right?
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