My husband and I work from home and share a work office. We have so for 5 years. We also have a new 7-week-old baby girl.
Prior to her birth, we used to ask each other how work was going all the time: "what are you up to?" I'd ask, or "are you working?" I didn't ask because I want to monitor if he's working a lot, but because I want to know if it's safe to disturb him or even just find out about his day. These were always received fine when no defense at all.
Now our little girl is here and there's a lot more pressure for him to work (since I'm not working yet) and because we all are currently still in survival mode where there just aren't enough hours in the day to get everything done. These same questions have become dangerous to ask. He becomes defensive and feels like I'm judging him by not working enough or because he's taking a break when he should be helping out with our daughter. These aren't my intentions at all, but the situation is much more difficult and stressful now.
To be clear, this happens to me too. It's very easy to feel judged, because I do things differently - maybe he thinks I leave her a bit too long undressed before her bath and I feel judged and defensive.
Suddenly it feels like we are behaving as enemies instead of as friends in some aspects and are suspicious of each others' behavior.
I would like to be able to talk to my husband without him becoming defensive and thinking I'm an enemy - or even just minimizing my chances of him feeling this way. I want to talk to him about his actions just to find out about his day again without it being bad. How do I ask him about his actions without him becoming defensive?