Being a new mom is HARD, y’all. You do remember what it was like when you had your first child, right? Even though it may have been a long time ago, try to remember what she’s going through. If you’re planning on visiting her anytime soon, here’s a quick refresher how not to be an annoying house guest. Don’t have any kids yourself? Then you definitely need to read this.
Be on Time and Leave Promptly:
New moms are tired. If you tell her you will be there by 10 am, you better get your butt over there on time. Why? New moms have to snag time naps and shower times when they can and they have not yet adjusted to the crazy newborn schedule. Imagine that her baby fell asleep, but she is expecting you. She will not sneak in that quick nap because she knows you’re coming. If you arrive at 11:30, you have just cheated her out of 1.5 hours of blissful sleep. See where I am going with this? The same goes for the exit strategy. If you start to see your friend’s eyelids drooping with exhaustion, it’s time to peace out. No matter what she says. Let that woman rest!
If you have made a date to go over and meet the new baby, you better be bringing some food. No, I’m not talking about the iced coffee and muffin you planned to bring her. I’m talking about food that you prepared for her to use at a later date. Start thinking about muffins in a Ziploc bag that she can throw in her freezer and use as needed. I’m talking about a pre-made meal that she can throw in the microwave and serve for dinner later. If she doesn’t have a meal train started, ask her if she would like one and get it started.
Maybe you were that mom who sailed right into breastfeeding without a hitch. Your baby maybe even slept through the night fairly easily. Maybe you didn’t worry much about germs or infections. All of that is awesome, but this new mom might not be doing the same. You definitely don’t want to minimize her fears or concerns, even if you think she is worrying unnecessarily. Keep these thoughts to yourself. Encourage her and give her time to vent. It’s okay to listen and NOT give advice. If she asks, feel free to share your wisdom about napping with her.
You know what the best thing anyone ever did for me the first week I was home from the hospital? Clean. My sister walked right into my condo, asked where my cleaning supplies were, and got to work. Now I’m not suggesting you head on over there with your container of Clorox wipes, but picking up a bit and maybe even wiping down a counter or two will go a long way. If don’t feel comfortable with this, find a good cleaning service and buy her a gift card. She can use it whenever she wants. At the very least offer to take out the garbage when you leave.
Bring a Gift for Her, Not the Baby:
You know how many onesies she has right about now? A million. Resist the urge to buy the baby 15 more outfits and buy something for the new mom. Something that will make her feel special. It could be a candle, a box of chocolates, some pretty soap or a new necklace. Her body has just been through one of the most traumatic experiences in life and she’s getting little, if any, sleep. I can guarantee that a little something to make her feel like herself will be much appreciated. She definitely has enough stuff for the baby. Trust me.
New moms are exhausted and hormonal, so cut them some slack. Be kind. Give her a hug and remember that she needs some TLC too!
What are some ways you have helped out a new mom?
Mom, wife, educator, and loyal friend. Passionate about all things reading and writing. Sharing parenting tips with an educator’s lens.