Wilmer Valderrama knows all about the roller coaster that is a new parent's sleep schedule. In an interview with Parents magazine, the Encanto actor opened up about how his entire life changed when he and fiancée Amanda Pacheco welcomed a baby girl last year. "The first few nights we were like, 'We can do this!' But by the sixth day, that sleep deprivation gets tough," Wilmer shared.
While Amanda was breastfeeding, he was constantly looking for tasks to help out with. "Your job as a partner is not just to be there," he said. "If you're not doing anything, you're not doing enough. There are a million things to be done while your partner is nursing: Get the baby, change the baby, burp the baby, track the feeding, and keep the mommy hydrated, fed, and rested."
Wilmer and Amanda were set up through mutual friends for what was initially supposed to be a casual, friendly coffee date. Three years later and they're more in love and focused on their relationship than ever. When their baby girl, Nakano Oceana, was born in February 2021, Wilmer refused to let the highs and lows of parenting make them lose sight of their connection and love for one another. "The baby is our priority, but you are mine," he said. "They tell you, 'It's all about the baby,' but when you're both with the baby, you can forget about each other and lose yourself there."
"When you have a baby who sleeps through the night, it's a lot easier to stay connected."
In vowing to still nourish their relationship, Wilmer and Amanda made the decision to sleep-train Nakano when she was no longer a newborn. "I didn't think I had the heart for it, because it made me feel bad, but ultimately, it's so empowering," he shared. "It allows you to focus on your partner. When you have a baby who sleeps through the night, it's a lot easier to stay connected."
Focusing on their relationship has also been possible thanks to the help of their close friends and family that live nearby. Yep, it truly takes a village. "It can be tough to ask for help, because as a new mom, you want to have it all together," Amanda said. "But having family helps. It never feels like we're asking too much. I'm so happy Nakano will grow up surrounded by affection."