The answer: It depends.
I was never a big believer in the whole concept of a babymoon. But that had a lot to do with our unique circumstances, the way our relationship unfolded. We were together for 5 years before we got married so we had plenty of time to enjoy spending time as a couple before adding a child. We were older when we got married (think 30+) so both of us had also had our fill of young solo activities, rest and relaxation, etc. To top it off, we were averaging at least one vacation per year anyways, so we were not starving for romance or getaways. And even if you know from our story that my husband already had his daughter, we only had her part time back then so it wasn’t difficult to carve out time for ourselves.
So, when we got pregnant with our daughter in March of 2012, we didn’t plan a “babymoon.”
But over time, things have changed. We took having our daughter pretty much in stride, despite the fact that she was not an easy baby. Our relationship definitely took a toll from the constant demands of those early parenting years. By the time our son was born, 2 years later, and despite our best intentions, our relationship was in a rough patch. Looking back, our friction was compounded by the fact that we had no support network. We rarely got the chance for any child-free time, let alone a healthy regular break. We had taken only 1 short child-free trip in the 4.5 years we’ve been raising children together and the purpose of that trip was to visit family, so while it was fun, it was also not centered around us.
In the 2 years since our son was born, we made huge strides in prioritizing our relationship. We hired sitters for date nights and even occasionally went out for date breakfast when the kids were in daycare. Anything to keep up our relationship in our new hectic, child-monopolized world.
So, when we decided to have our third child, it occurred to me that a babymoon would be a great way to reconnect as husband and wife. We had already done a ton of groundwork, hence the decision to have another child, but a special vacation would signify our commitment to each other. Especially since we were both fully aware of the strain a new baby can put on a marriage.
Even under the best circumstances, it is common for the relationship to take a short hiatus to make room for the new bundle of joy.
Having just returned from our babymoon, I can tell you it was totally right for us. With my pregnancy in mind, we planned a totally laid-back resort style vacation. We placed high emphasis on resting, that included sleeping most of the first day with the exception of getting midday lunch and massages. We made it a point to do everything that we wouldn’t normally get to do at home:
- wake up naturally (no kids for alarms!)
- take naps
- talk about grownup topics (without interruptions)
- meet new people
- go out for romantic dinners
I’ve always been really hesitant to leave the kids for an extended period of time, but now at 2.5 and 4.5 they did really well without us. Which was a relief.
So, back to the original question. To babymoon or not? Before you make a decision based on the babymoon trend, take a moment to consider your personal factors.
How is your relationship going?
Have you filled up your romance tank in preparation for a new baby?
Do you have a good support network, allowing for regular child-free outings?
Do you feel comfortable leaving your children with a caregiver?
Are you at a good point in your pregnancy for a vacation?
I think one of the things that made our trip so special was that it had been so long since we had taken a solo vacation. We reminisced about all of the fun vacations we took prior to having kids and we were both just so grateful to have a break and the chance to be with each other. Uninterrupted. Without deadlines and rushing and the general hectic nature of everyday life with littles. To say the least, it definitely added to our Sanity Plan.
Want to learn more about creating a Sanity Plan for yourself? Click here.