Having children is a big life decision that many people are not adequately prepared for. A new family member will increase monthly expenses and make daily life more exhausting. Parents also bear the burden of greater responsibility, since more people will be affected by a bad decision. It’s important to understand the changes you should be prepared for after having children. Below are five things that change forever when you have a child.
New Love Focus
New parents suddenly feel a different kind of love for the first time in their lives. Babies love their parents because they provide tender care. Later in life, most people love their spouse more than anyone else. However, having children introduces a third type of love — a parent’s love is infinite and persists for a lifetime. Love for children can make you happier, but it can also generate stress because of the extra concerns in your life.
Stress Problems Will Worsen
Increased stress is the most common complaint parents mention after having children. The responsibilities of having a child are inherently stressful, and this is compounded by the decreased sleep you’ll be getting with a new family member. Unfortunately, lack of sleep can make you grumpy and cause you to lash out at your spouse or child, so it’s important to find ways to cope with your increased stress after having a baby. Consider doing yoga, working out, or even herbal medicines.
Having children will certainly and significantly increase your family’s monthly expenses. Parents initially have to worry about medical bills, diapers, and furniture for their child’s bedroom, but these expenses are only the tip of the iceberg. Try to set aside a few hundred dollars each month for your child’s college savings fund. You’ll also need to be prepared for shorter-term education expenses, such as preschool and daycare.
Responsibilities Continue 24 Hours per Day
Infants require constant care because they’re completely dependent on their parents to survive. You’ll need to ensure that you feed your baby at the right times and that they’re being cared for while you’re at work. Young children can also require attention in the middle of the night, so work out a schedule with your spouse to divide responsibilities. Sharing the work can make it easier for you both to keep your stress down by getting enough sleep.
After having a child, you may find yourself feeling closer than ever to your spouse. While the added stress can create conflicts, it will also facilitate a stronger relationship that can persist for the remainder of your life. Prepare for increased stress and tension, but also be prepared for a new life that could make you happier than ever before.