Article: She ain't heavy - she's the mother of your child

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Making the mother-of-your-child feel good

Mother holding baby

Everything changes when you have a baby. People tell you this and you know it’s true. Many things are harder (lie-ins, keeping the car clean, hangovers) and many things are infinitely better. The first ‘daddy’ is pretty hard to beat. And some things just become different. Like your relationship with your partner. It needs to adjust as your fabulous sexy carefree lover also becomes a beautiful caring mother. Your partner will go through a huge adjustment as she marries up the new her with the old and you can do a huge amount to help her with this.

She ain’t heavy... It’s pretty obvious but the answer ‘yes you are looking rather large’ is never the right response to grumbles about how fat she’s looking. Having spent 9 months with a big belly that people admire, it’s tough to suddenly have a belly you’re really not that keen on, however happy you are with the baby that caused it. Women who don’t have postnatal weight to shift are a very practically mythical species. By all means if she wants to lose weight, support her when she wants to go to the gym and don’t wave your pies in front of her face as she eats Ryvita. But there’s nothing like critical comments on someone’s appearance for destroying self-confidence and the relationship. We’re not advocating lying (she knows what size she was before and what size she is now) just focus on the positives...tell her she looks beautiful when she’s obviously made an effort, print out the nice photos of her with the baby not the ones with the double-chin and encourage her to treat herself to some new clothes to make her feel better about herself. There are plenty of ones around that will adjust as her weight changes so aren’t a bad investment. And give her the time to do ‘me-things’ (a bath, a shop, a massage) that will help her remind her there’s a woman behind the mother.

Love HeartsMany women talk about how becoming a mother makes them feel worried about feeling mumsy, or turning into their mothers.  In today’s world, it’s become less common for men to refer to their wives as ‘Mother’.  Thank goodness. Stick to her name – she’s not your mother and it’s important you don’t make her feel like she is. Many men really want to make their partners feel sexy again after having a baby. I’ve lost track of the number of women who have told me about their husbands buying them inappropriate underwear which just made them feel worse. This well-intentioned idea is so lovely and so wrong.  As your wife or girlfriend works out the balance between feeling like a mistress and feeling like a woman, help her resolve it. If you’re going to buy underwear, find something that’s suitable for postnatal wear. We have great success with our Rose and Lace lingerie set because it’s pretty gorgeous but also suitable for breastfeeding. Or, let’s be honest, if you want her to feel special and sexy, jewellery is hard to beat. Postnatal mothers may also be ‘expectant’; it’s become more and more common for dads to buy a significant piece of jewellery to celebrate the birth of a baby. It doesn’t have to be diamonds but something thoughtful might go down a treat. To be honest though, it doesn’t need to be an expensive gift, it’s just about showing you appreciate what she’s been though and that you still love and respect her. A little letter saying thank you for going through the ‘moaning sickness’ and the c-section, or a little card telling her that you love her... priceless.

Sophie Devonshire is the founder of Babes With Babies London, an e-boutique for pregnant and new mothers. Find gifts for mothers and more advice for fathers at


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