This honest post about juggling parenting and relationships will strike a chord

Sarah from Cornwall

Blogger and new mum Sarah Woodside blogs at Diary of a Fat English Girl, and a post she shared a couple of days ago is striking a chord with other parents.

“Things haven’t been too great lately”

Sarah posted a very sweet and happy-looking photo of herself with her partner Thomas and their 15-month-old son Arlo, the family feeding a tropical bird. But despite cheery appearances, the lead up to this image was far from chipper – and possibly very relatable to parents of small children.

“Things haven’t been too great lately with Thomas and I,” Sarah wrote. “I’m not sharing this because I want to tell the world our problems, but because I’ve always been real.”

“If you are in a similar situation then please know you are not alone, having a child changes your entire life so it’s only normal your relationship may shift a little (or a lot) too.”


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“We are trying”

In a seemingly endless social media feed of personal highlight reels, it’s refreshing to witness an update that’s honest, loving and frank … and not so filtered. Sarah touched on the pressure this wee family has been under, and their hopes for much better days.

“We have both been stressed, run down, tired, grumpy and just a bit horrible to one another,” Sarah admitted. “But we are trying, because we want to make our family work and we love each other.”

“I’m trying to bite my tongue a little more, and he’s trying to be a bit more present and involved, and we’re both trying to appreciate the other a little more.”

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Things haven’t been too great lately with Thomas and I. I’m not sharing this because I want to tell the world our problems, but because I’ve always been real. If you are in a similar situation then please know you are not alone, having a child changes your entire life so it’s only normal your relationship may shift a little (or a lot) too. . . We have both been stressed, run down, tired, grumpy and just a bit horrible to one another. But we are trying, because we want to make our family work and we love each other. I’m trying to bite my tongue a little more and he’s trying to be a bit more present and involved and we’re both trying to appreciate the other a little more. It’s going to take work to get back to our happy little groove but we have both agreed that we want to put the work in. We’ve been together almost 5 years and a lot has happened in that time, but since our man arrived all our focus has been on him (as it should be) and we’ve been neglecting one another. So here’s to hard work and to getting us back on track. . . Today after swimming we went for lunch and then to our favourite Paradise Park, where we fed the Lorikeets for the first time. I was pretty impressed, the boys not so much, swipe to the last picture 😂 (I accidentally put a filter on when trying to take the photo 🤦🏻‍♀️.) . . . #toddlerlife #raisingboys #motherhoodunplugged #15months #15monthsold #15monthpostpartum #mummyblogger #mommyblogger #pblogger #mommyblogger #mummyblogger #newmum #blogger

A post shared by Sarah 📍Cornwall (@diaryofafatenglishgirl) on

“Here’s to hard work”

This lovely mum says that their little boy has become the centre of their world, but that they’re really keen to press the reset button and devote more time to one another.

“It’s going to take work to get back to our happy little groove but we have both agreed that we want to put the work in. We’ve been together almost five years and a lot has happened in that time, but since our man arrived all our focus has been on him (as it should be) and we’ve been neglecting one another. So here’s to hard work and to get us back on track.”

It’s a story that many couples with small children will find relatable, and we love it that Sarah has been so open and no-nonsense about their challenges.

Coupledom is not as picture-perfect as social media might have us think – and sharing the challenges can lighten the load (and provide others with bolstering perspective too.)

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The face of a little man loving the tea cups. Don’t be fooled by this cheeky face though, it wasn’t all a walk in the park today, shortly after this he had an epic poo explosion, covering his dungarees, it was all over his legs, yet somehow dodged the bodysuit and I had to wrestle to clean him and get him changed all on a baby changing unit with no straps. . . I wasn’t going to post these pictures because I hate how I look in them. Arlo is getting faster and faster and I’ll be honest I really struggle to keep up. It isn’t good enough. I’m fine in a big open space like the beach but today surrounded by people in a busy place I felt so anxious that I’d blink and he’d be gone all because I’m too chubby to keep up with him. I haven’t been to @slimmingworld for three weeks because we’ve just been so bloody poor and Arlo’s been teething and wanting me! But I need to get myself back through the door. You’d think having been so successful before it would be easy but if anything I’ve found it so much harder, but I must keep trying. I will get there it’s just going to take longer this time. . . . #13months #13monthsold #BLWWithArlo #13monthpostpartum #mummyblogger #mommyblogger #slimmingworld #mommyblogger #mummyblogger #slimmingworldblog #newmum #blogger #foodblog #weightlossjourney #weightlossaccount #slimmingworldjourney #slimmingworlduk #sw #foodblogger

A post shared by Sarah 📍Cornwall (@diaryofafatenglishgirl) on

“Feels like we are housemates”

Other parents chimed in on reading this update, admitting that they too were finding adjusting to having a brilliant new little person in the midst of their relationship really, really tricky.

“This is what I said to my husband,” one of Sarah’s followers wrote. “Feels like we are housemates, he works nights and sleeps through the day, so it’s just me and the baby most of the time, it’s very sad.”

“My relationship has been like this for a few months. I’m not sure it’s fixable. My anxiety tells me I can’t be on my own with three children, but I know I’ll never be truly alone,” another struggling mum wrote.

“I couldn’t have read this at a better time,” another follower posted. “This last week, my partner and I have been going through the same thing, he says he thought about leaving me as he doesn’t feel like I want him there as there is no affection and we are more like housemates than a couple. We have decided to try harder and work at it, no one tells you how much changes when you have a baby.”

If you’re navigating the same sorts of feelings with your partner, you are not alone.

Godspeed to all the parents who are finding this balance challenging and upsetting – and note that counselling may help you formalise a strategy to get things back on course more speedily.

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