Okay, go read the title. Then think a minute.
Damn right one of your partners having a baby is going to change things. Jesus, where’s your brain? Reams of paper go out with printed whinging about fathers who feel jealous of the attention their wives give their new babies. It’s something even monogamous people have to deal with. What in hell makes you think you’re so special?
Okay, rant aside, will a partner having a baby change your relationship for the worse?
It doesn’t have to, but that depends on a lot of things. Like, oh… Do you like babies and small children? If you don’t, friend, you’re facing issues in this department. Having a new baby is like NRE only more so. The average new parent tends to be a bit gaga about the new baby. It seems weird from the outside, but all that silly play and goofiness is important, because it makes the baby grow right.
Me? Well, in the last couple of years, my own poly relationships have been a bit baby-centric and I rather like it, but I like babies and I like playing with small children. I’m also a parent, myself, so as far as the whole baby thing? Getting to enjoy playing with ‘em when I don’t have to deal 24/7 is a treat. Kinda grandparenting lite, I suppose. If you really like babies, you’re all good. Play, have fun. When the baby’s asleep, play and have grown-up fun –from intellectual discussions to something more physical.
But what if that isn’t your thing? Do you have to abandon your loves as being Lost to Breederhood?
Not if you don’t want to, but it will be useful to accept a few things.
New parents are temporarily insane.
No, it’s not your imagination. If parents of very small children seem a little crazy, it’s because they are. You know how I go on and on in this blog about the dangers of sleep deprivation? Those dangers are real and the average new parent is damned sleep-deprived. Keep that in mind, and be patient. It gets better, but it takes a few years.
Being a new parent is like being in NRE up to eleven
Ever notice how most new parents think their baby is the most perfect, beautiful, intelligent creature ever to grace mankind, when all you see is a smelly, squalling, red-faced lump who has turned your brilliant love’s mind into a pile of goo? That infatuation with the kid perpetuates the human race, friend. The same chemicals that drive NRE are keeping those people from selling that baby to the Gypsies.
Even new parents like to remember that they’re something besides food, cuddling and diaper-changing machines
When The Prince and I had our son, we used to occasionally refer to ourselves as the baby’s keepers. Everyone was all excited to see the baby, but dammit, we were still intelligent adults who liked to debate politics and unscrew the inscrutable. But noo…. Everyone wanted to get out the stuffed animals and make the baby laugh. Gah!
If you’re not majorly into babies and are involved with a new parent, you can be someone who helps remind them that they’re more than baby keepers. Those intelligent conversations might have to be a bit more carefully scheduled, but they can still happen. Your loves will enjoy it, trust me.
Spontaneity in terms of getting together has gone bye-bye
Sorry. I know that sucks. But if you value the relationship, you’re going to have to suck it up and deal with scheduling.
That communication thing is still important
You know the temporary insanity thing I talked about? It’s okay to communicate how you feel in the face of it. Boundaries, negotiation, love, caring and all that stuff still count and it’s still important. Don’t neglect it.
So, the short answer is YES, one of your partner’s or partner’s partners having a new baby will change your relationship and how you interact. So does adding a new partner. So does a lot of things. That’s okay. It’s all in how you handle it. But keep an open mind, because it can be fun.