What are the most common parenting problems

Parenthood poses new challenges

Explained by graduate psychologist and psychological psychotherapist Micaela Peter, couple and family therapy, Hamburg

Couple conflicts or marital problems after the child? In the Falkenried Couple Therapy Practice there is specific help for parents.

The changes after the birth of a child are still one of the most frequently cited reasons for divorces or separations in Germany. Relationships, sexual problems, affairs, dissatisfaction with the quality of the relationship and the decline in mutual attention are particularly evident after the birth of the first child. Many parents are downright shocked by all these unexpected changes and are often overwhelmed with the necessary adjustments for which they have mostly not been adequately prepared in advance.
In an LBS family study, couples confirmed the following perceived changes

  • > 90% less time to relax and recuperate together
  • > 60% less sex
  • 63% less attention and affection from partner
  • ~ 50% more disaffection and tension
  • ~ 30% more arguments and arguments

Results of the LBS family study (Fthenakis & Kalicki, 2002): Proportion of parents who rated various changes in their partnership 34 months after the birth of the first child.

There is a relationship before and a relationship after the child. Becoming parents is probably the greatest and strongest challenge for any partnership. Almost overnight, man and woman suddenly become father and mother, without early and sufficient preparation for all the various changes .

Become parents, husband and wife become father and mother

For every man, “becoming a father” and for every woman “becoming a mother” is associated with certain wishes and expectations that cannot always be fulfilled after the child is born. Experiencing ambivalent feelings towards one's own child, for example, is associated with shame and guilt for many parents, because they do not know that many parents temporarily experience similar feelings due to exhaustion. Exhaustion, helplessness and disappointment are common topics of young parents, including those who have received the child as the crowning glory of their love and are now in a partnership crisis.

But “not all parents feel worse as a result of the birth of the child and not all partnerships show erosion as a result of the birth of the first child. While some partnerships deteriorate dramatically, some relationships do not deteriorate. Some partnership relationships even improve in the long term when a child is born. The extent of the change in the individual state of mind and the quality of the partnership is an indicator of how well the parents are able to adapt individually to the new situation and cope with the changes and challenges associated with parenting ”(Fthenakis & Kalicki, 2002, p. 90) and we would like to support you in this.

Our free audio podcast offers help for parents "Parental Love", which takes up the most important and frequent topics of young and expectant parents and provides constructive advice and advice.

The transition from lovers to parents is a central topic that receives too little attention and education in the literature, which is why Micaela Peter has devoted herself to this important topic as part of a psychology podcast. This podcast is available as a free download; the most frequent questions from those affected are discussed in an interview.

* Fthenakis, W. & Kalicki, B. (2002). Couples become parents: the results of the LBS family study (p. 88). Opladen: Leske + Budrich.