Postpartum Tip Roundup: Planning For Life With New Babies
Searching Google images for “plan for baby” brings up hundreds of images of baby showers and toys. A search for “postpartum plan” yields exercise plans. While I don’t want to downplay the importance of baby showers and exercise, these search results are a sad reflection of how little idea we have of what to expect after a baby is born, and how many people don’t really know how to be helpful!
The pressure to “get on with things” while we recover from birth and adjust to life with our babies is tremendous. Without paid parental leave or a culture which really supports new families, many U.S. parents need to deliberately arrange support and teach people what is helpful.
Here are some tips for new parents and their helpers:
New Moms, You Need To Rest. Everyone Else, Here’s How You Can Help
Why Is the Postpartum Period So Hard on New Mothers?
7 Ways to Find Your Circle of Support in Pregnancy and Postpartum.
Here are one father’s thoughts on 9 Things Never To Say To Parents of a Newborn and what he thinks would be helpful. A previous newsletter of mine also contains lots of tips for new dads.
Finally, for those well-intentioned but unsure visitors–some rules for visiting from midwife Gloria Lemay.
Even with the most thoughtful planning, the early days are unpredictable
Even with the most thoughtful planning, birth and the early days of parenting can bring unpredictable challenges. For local bodyworkers, new parent support groups, loss groups, breastfeeding support and many other resources, you can use my Resource Guide–sign up for it in blue box at the bottom of this page.
In my years of working with parents, I have seen many unreasonable expectations placed on new parents by friends, family and employers. But the voice inside a new mother’s head is often the harshest, most unreasonable one of all, and needs to be countered with gentleness, reassurance, kindness and reminders about the importance of her rest and recovery.
If you enjoyed this, you might also enjoy:
Three Reasons Why Postpartum Support Is Not Just For Mothers
Three Reasons Why Parenting Is Harder Than We Thought It Would Be
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