Being a new mum is hard. It makes no difference if it’s your first baby or your tenth baby! It’s overwhelming and for those that have been there and done that it is our duty to help our friends. I remember bringing my first baby home from the hospital and realising that I had to actually keep it alive….it was all down to me and my husband to make sure this tiny human being came to no harm. It was then that it shocked us that they let anyone do this. They don’t even check who you are…they just give you a baby!! It’s mind blowing! So what can you do to help…
1. Don’t offer unsolicited advice
I always found it odd that as a new mummy that people, sometimes complete strangers, would feel the need to give me advice. In the shop, at a bus stop or even just walking along the street. We all think we know better. The truth is we don’t because every baby is different and every situation is different. What works for one baby doesn’t work for another and at the end of the day nobody is there with that new mummy at 1am and 3am and 4am when baby is awake.
2. Take them food
Now I’m not prone to forgetting to eat……apart from when I had a baby. I remember hearing tales about new mums getting to 7pm at night and realising they hadn’t actually had anything to eat. I thought this was odd. Very odd. How can anyone forget to eat…then I had a baby and the days went by, one minute it was 7am and I was watching re-runs of the Sopranos (it was the only thing that kept me awake) and the next minute Emmerdale was starting and I hadn’t even managed to get dressed. How does one tiny baby take up so much time and need so much…..stuff. The best thing ever was my father in law dropping off one person sized tupperware boxes with Spaghetti Bolognese in them. I lived off that stuff. So take them food. Any food as long as it’s quick to warm up.
3. Don’t call by unannounced
Those first few weeks after baby comes home are a blur. As a mum you are trying to recover from the birth, as a dad you are trying to come to terms with what you have just witnessed exiting your wife body and as a couple you are readjusting your whole life to include a tiny person that you don’t know! On top of all that you have hoards of people coming to your house, some people you haven’t seen for years, and it’s just really weird time and when those people just turn up it’s even worse!!! There is nothing more unsettling than opening to the door to a long lost friend with a nightie on that could do with a good wash, baby sick in your hair and baby poo on your dressing gown (this was a really scenario except it was the postman and I also had my left breast hanging out because I’d just been feeding). It’s not a pretty sight trust me so ring before.you descend and remember the food..
4. Make your own coffee
Ok so you’ve made the food and rang the new mum and dad. They have said you can visit. Do not turn up and expect to be entertained or worse still do not turn up and just cuddle the baby expecting your new parent chums to run around after you. Go in and say hello then offer to make them a cup of coffee. Trust me they need it. If you are good friends after a little while offer to pop a wash in and when in the kitchen wash the pots that are there. If they look tired and you are desperate for a squeeze of that new tiny human then tell them to go and get a bath or shower or even have a nap and you will cuddle the baby until it needs feeding. Oh and don’t take no for an answer.
5. Don’t overstay your welcome.
So once you have done all that and spring cleaned their house:) the biggest mistake you can make is overstaying your welcome. There is nothing worse than visitors who will not leave. All you want to do as new parents sometimes is lock the door and get to know your little family on your own. It’s a lot to take in and it takes practise this parenting lark so let them be and leave early enough so they want you come back for more cuddles….
This is the first photograph of my first little bundle of joy that changed our lives forever. The best rule for new parents is just be kind and understand that this is the most amazing yet frightening thing that has ever happened to them:)
Newborn Photography Manchester, Maternity Photography Manchester, Cake Smash Photography Manchester