When Partners Become Parents: The Big Life Change for Couples

By Carolyn Pape Cowan; Philip A. Cowan | Go to book overview

CHAPTER 5
What's Happening to Us?

SHARON: I really thought we'd discussed it before Amy was born -- that Daniel was going to be more help around the house. But he just wasn't. I stewed for a long time and felt angry when I could have just said something. He'd never been around anyone who'd had a C-section or any major surgery. He didn't know that he wasn't supposed to let me cart tubs of wet diapers down the hall for the first month. I was feeling so shaky, and before I knew it our whole relationship was on shaky ground.

I finally said something to Daniel when Amy was about four months old. But I've had to keep doing it. I'm not very good about saying, "Things are not going well here." I usually give out a couple of hints, and then wait until I get really irritated. I'll sit on it for a couple of months before I come to Daniel and say something like, "Who died and left me in charge of the laundry?"

Sharon and Daniel are describing to us what has happened to their relationship in the six months since Amy was born. Daniel is used to Sharon's humorous but cutting complaints; he says something conciliatory but has some complaints of his own:

Daniel: Looking back, I can see now that I wasn't as sensitive as I could have been. But what Sharon is leaving out is that I did all the shopping

-91-

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