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Life after birth - questions

(7 Posts)
berolina Sat 09-Jul-05 04:28:37

DS (our first baby) was born 7 weeks ago. despite various things being hard to start with (e.g. bf!), overall it's not been as difficult as I expected, and I'm besotted with my lovely baby. However, there are a couple of things I wanted to ask about, which seem trivial in the scheme of things, but would like to know if they will iron themselves out:

1) Rattiness/rows. I seem to be getting more and more ratty and easily upset with dh. It actually isn't fair, as he's at home with me (research student) and really does do a lot and is especially brilliant with ds. However, there are just things which get on my nerves: I kind of seem to be the one who's keeping everything going - sending out birth announcements, getting the cleaning done (OK, if I ask him to help he will, no problems, but he just never sees it - pre-birth he cleaned once a week!), the washing-up (again, if I ask him he'll do it, and he'll get upset if I try to do it, as he somehow thinks of it as his job - but if I left it to him it'd be there for days), etc. etc. Recently I had to tell him to shave, he walks around in dirty clothes (not all baby sick either - mostly from cooking and carelessness) and can actually sleep through ds's crying - I certainly can't, so ds gets seen to, but it just amazes me! I'm also doing bits of work when I can, preparing my courses for next semester (I'm a lecturer and the sole earner - have stat mat leave until end July, then my annual leave, and am going back in mid-Oct) while bf for example, but he seems to spend most of his time reading sports and news websites and occasionally does a bit of work on his doctorate - at least that's what it looks like to me - which is really annoying because it would help us if he got funding, but he seems really slow about doing any applications. It took us a while to establish bf and now I've finally done it, but he's rather unsupportive. He spent the time I was struggling to establish it and really down about it telling me I didn't have enough milk, now he keeps nagging me about getting ds into a routine/making him go for longer between feeds, which I really don't want to do right now. I've told him how I feel and he now says OK, he'll say nothing, but this means that when I ask for support/his opinion on something he'll withdraw behind this saying-nothing thing and leave me feeling pretty insecure, that he thinks what I'm doing is a load of rubbish but doesn't want to say it. 2 nights ago I asked him to pick ds up while I got myself woken up for feeding, he leaned over me to do so (instead of getting up and going round the bed), leaned on me and shoved his elbow into my full breast, which REALLY hurt, and now I'm worried it might have damaged my milk supply permanently. This (him not being bothered to get up properly and causing this) kind of seems a bit symptomatic - which is probably really unfair as he does do more than his bit - he does all the shopping/errands, all the cooking, half the nappy changes and will do cleaning/washing up if I ask him -, and he's always been a bit of a slob in many ways (zero interest in clothes/appearance, for example), but I just find the slobbishness seems to have got worse since the birth, or I seem to be more sensitive to it. I find myself getting ratty and picking rows, which sometimes get pretty heated on my side (he has this really annoying superior air and a tendency to paint me as hysterical) and then have me worrying about the effect on ds (who is always with us - spends most of his time in my or dh's arms, and we only have a 1-bed flat anyway). Is it me, is it him or is it both of us? I've probably made him sound worse than he is - he has so many really really good sides, I love him to bits and I wouldn't be without him for the world - I just don't like how I often feel about him right now, and am wondering whether it is my fault. Is this normal after birth?

2) (TMI alert, ) Sex - is it normal for it to hurt the first time after birth? I know it's bl**dy good going for us to have done it at all - but the pain was the last thing I was expecting! (Should add we hadn't done it since finding out I was pg as I'd had a mc and was paranoid). Does it get better?

TIA - doesn't look like ds will wake again, might risk going to bed now

Tessiebear Sat 09-Jul-05 07:49:28

There is nothing like having a baby to look after to make you tune into what your DH does or DOESNT do!!!!!!!
It never used to bother me if DH just had a day "doing nothing " or having a sleep at an odd time in the day. Because you have so many more responsibilities yourself suddenly it is easy to become resentful to the person who is not your childs "main carer".
I think it is to do with the overwhelming responsibility that the new mum feels. Although i do agree that men can sometimes seem to do LESS than they did befor - dont ask me why.
I think prehaps they feel bit overwhelmed as well - and instead of rising to the challenge they "switch off" to avoid dealing with the extra responsibility.
All i can suggest is to talk to your partner and always include him (without it feeling like nagging- )
As for getting elbowed - IT WILL NOT effect your milk supply
As for sex - it never quite feels the same again, but if it continues to hurt - prehaps mention it to your Dr??? I remember feeling very "numb" down there for a while when having sex
Will let you know when i eventually have my baby - Ten days overdue now
Good luckX

sobernow Sat 09-Jul-05 08:04:11

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

NotQuiteCockney Sat 09-Jul-05 10:07:01

Berolina, the way you're feeling is normal. Dealing with a new baby is hard. One rule we have, which we find helps, is "no criticising while a baby is crying". Because what starts out, in your head as "darling, I'd really rather you didn't ..." comes out of your mouth as "please don't ...", and goes into the other person's head as "you ^&&&(, don't you ever &^%^&!" ..."

Your life sounds a bit claustrophobic, to me. Are you getting out of the house much? Can you go for long walks? Does your DS sleep well in the pram?

Re: sex. Yes, discomfort is normal. Try again, but make sure there's lots of lubrication, and do it in a position where you control the penetration. (e.g. you on top) Take it slowly and carefully and it should be better.

berolina Sat 09-Jul-05 16:21:51

thank you all! have only just got to computer cos of dh's tour de france obsession! am glad to know this isn't unusual.
tessie - good luck!!!
sobernow - lol at flowery glade - i really recognise that expectation and its reality check! i wanted ds so much and do feel guilty for not deliriously delighting over him every minute of the day (+ night)!
i suppose i've never really assumed dh is wobbling, because he radiates calm-in-controlness somehow - possibly the slobishness is just an extreme of being laid back? he prob wouldn't tell me if he was, only if it was really serious or if i asked him straight. despite not being a typical 'male' at all he does have a huge block re. showing weakness.
nqc, things are a bit claustrophobic, not just because of limited space, but mainly as we are quite isolated here - small town, no family/friends nearby, only moved here (for my job) just over 1 yr ago. however, we are off for the summer tomorrow to stay with various family and friends and i think that will be really good for both of us - and dh will be doing some research!

sobernow Sat 09-Jul-05 16:32:11

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

mummytosteven Wed 13-Jul-05 01:11:26

1)sounds a lot like sleep deprivation to me - that you become highly tetchy. it will improve as you become stronger after birth, and hopefully when your little guy lets you have more sleep

2)it hurt like hell the first few times (I had lots of stitches and an episiotomy). Agree with NQCs sex tip. When I spoke to the doctor about this (amazing how childbirth makes you shameless ) he said to use lots of lubrication - I thought he was being patronising, but I did find that using lots of ky jelly type stuff helped a lot at getting rid of pain.

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