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Reviewed by Joe Wisinski for Readers' Favorite
Happy With Baby: Essential Relationship Advice When Partners Become Parents is a guide for new parents. Most of the book isn’t about raising the baby, though. It’s about maintaining a solid and happy relationship with your partner when a new baby enters the household. Author Catherine O'Brien recognizes the huge changes that take place in a relationship and that many parents are unequipped to handle the situation. The book is divided into three sections—“Taking Care of Yourself,” “Taking Care of Your Relationship,” and “Taking Care of Baby.” Chapter titles include “Your Partner in Crime Needs Their Sidekick,” “Talk, Talk, Talk; All We Do Is Never Talk,” and “Bonding with Baby.” The book is interactive; readers are encouraged to answer the questions the author poses. O'Brien is a licensed marriage and family therapist and a parent herself. Her goal is to help readers be a “couple who works together to be the best caregivers to your baby that you can be.”
I wish Happy With Baby had been available when I was a new father. It would have helped us navigate the many challenges, along with the joy, that a baby brings. The book is full of excellent advice that will make life easier for the parents and happier for the baby. Author Catherine O’Brien wisely included many case studies which, apart from imparting valuable information in and of themselves, will help ensure parents that they are not alone; other couples have experienced the same issues. The tips O’Brien provides are practical, workable, and invaluable. For example, she mentions a client who developed a spreadsheet that allowed her friends to sign up for tasks such as cleaning, bringing meals, or mowing the lawn. I highly recommend this superb book to all new parents. Better yet, prospective parents should read it before the new baby enters the household. The book will prepare them for what’s to come and help them successfully navigate those first few difficult, but rewarding, months.