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Life After Baby Counseling

There is no arguing that having a baby is one of the most joyous, wonderful, miraculous and greatest bonding experiences in a couple’s relationship. With your new baby comes a new way to define your relationship as a couple. If it is your first child, then you are experiencing the shift from being a couple to being a family. If it is your second, third, fourth or even fifth child, your family dynamic will shift and change in different ways. Having a baby bonds you and your partner for life in inexplicable ways that are often too profound to be apparent right away.

Whether you felt “ready” to have a baby or your pregnancy was a surprise, figuring the ins and outs of having a new baby and dealing with all the issues that come along with the territory can be impossible to anticipate. Exhaustion, sleep deprivation, a general feeling of being overwhelmed, feelings of being incompetent are all normal, however at the beginning these things can magnify many issues that you as a couple thought were problematic and can bring into light new ones that you had not previously known existed.

As a marriage therapist for over 20 years and having dealt with many couples throughout those years, it is my strong suggestion that you address and try to resolve chronic “problems” you have as a couple before having your first child. Having a baby will not solve your problems by making you into a solidified unit and giving you a common ground. In fact, often times the arrival of a child will magnify the issues you had prior to having your baby.


If you are considering starting or expanding your family, there are some important issues you should consider and discuss with one another first. These include:

  • Are you and partner on the same page about starting a family
  • Are you ready financially
  • Are you in agreement about work/career plans
  • Realistic assessment of your partnership and making things works day to day, chores and responsibilities
  • Can you make space for time alone with you spouse
  • Do you have a solid intimate and sexual relationship
  • How well do you deal with new challenges
  • If there are issues of different religions, need to come to an agreement on religious affiliation(s) of the child


Conflict after a having a baby is normal. Both partners are tired and are feeling stretched and often have shortened patience for one another. Some of the reasons I find couples have conflict after having a baby are:

  • Less energy and time for each other
  • Baby becomes a priority
  • Numerous potential areas of conflict such as approaches to parenting, schedules, childcare
  • Potential issues with in-laws, allocating time, possible intrusions, judgments, etc
  • Baby brings into light and challenges core values, beliefs
  • One of the partners (usually husband) feels left out, there is a sense of “what happened to us”
  • Decrease in sexual relations due to pregnancy, labor and childbirth, at times linger and evolve into estrangement and disconnect.
  • No or little alone time


If you have found that you are feeling a strain on your relationship after having a baby, or have dealt with all or some of these issues before getting pregnant or after the baby comes, you may greatly benefit from getting professional help from a therapist who understands how to work with couples experiencing these issues.

It is my belief that the best thing you can give your child is an example of a good relationship between you and your partner. Your relationship needs to always be a priority along with good parenting.


Call 212-953-1388 today or email to make an appointment with the best marriage therapist in NYC – Irina Firstein, LCSW. I am especially accessible to clients looking for marriage therapists Manhattan and in all other areas of New York City.

Sessions available in person, by phone or on Skype.