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Thread: PSA: When Visiting A New Mom

  1. Keep Calm and Ride Unicorns
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    #1

    Smile PSA: When Visiting A New Mom

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    Saw this article today and loved it, so I wanted to share! I'm sure a lot of mothers can appreciate this.

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    PSA: When Visiting A New Mom

    This here is a Public Service Announcement regarding the dos and doníts of visiting a new mom.

    First and foremost, please remember that although you are anxious to smell that babyís head and kiss those baby toes, this woman recently spent 1-72 hours getting a 7-11lb human out of her vagina.

    Or had the major surgery of a Caesarean Section. Most people tend to gloss over the fact that C-sections are major surgery. Keep these thoughts in the front of your brain.

    WHEN TO VISIT: I realize you are busy but ask New Mom when would be a good time for her AND the baby for you to stop by. Visit at THEIR convenience, not yours. If you hear hesitation in her voice, do not push the issue. You will get to meet New Baby soon enough. These two are finding their way around such basics as eating and sleeping. Let them.

    WHAT TO BRING: Bring food. Call and ask New Mom what she might like to eat. Food that can be easily reheated and held with one hand is good food. When in doubt, quiches and soups are usually awesome. Iím 99.9% certain, New Baby does NOT need another onsie, blanket, stuffed animal or a copy of Goodnight Moon. If you really want to bring a gift, bring food. If you still want to bring a gift, gift, ASK if New Mom if she needs anything she might have forgotten about.

    WHAT TO SAY: Youíre pretty in the clear with, ďYou look great. And the baby is gorgeous. And so smart.Ē Beyond that, listen. Birth and the first few days can be overwhelming and she may be in awe. Let her recount this amazing story to you. Let her fawn and tell you things about this child like she invented them. Agree with her. About everything. Ask her how she feels and LISTEN. Ask her if she wants to tell you her birth story. OFFER TO WRITE IT DOWN FOR HER. Every mom should write her birth story down, the sooner the better because the details fade. Keep in mind, now is not a good time to recite YOUR birth story.

    WHAT NOT TO SAY: If her birth did not go according to plan, for the love of all that is holy, DO NOT SAY, ďWell, at least heís healthy.Ē While this is true, it completely invalidates her experience. Good friends listen between the tears. If she had a rock star birth, be appropriately amazed. Do not ask her when she plans to return to work, the gym, sex or the girls night out.

    WHAT TO DO: Look around and see what needs to be done. Clean the toilet. Do a load of laundry. Ask if anything heavy needs to be moved or lifted. Cook her food. Do the dishes. Vacuum. Do not ask her. Just do it. Ask her if you can hold the baby while she NAPS or SHOWERS. Thatís right. These basics go by the way side in the first few weeks of New Baby. Ask her if you can help address/mail announcements or return any gifts or do anything she might need. If she has older kids, ask if you take them somewhere or pick them up from daycare or school.

    When in doubt: ASK. And donít be offended by the answer.
    One of the tragedies of current parenting is our loss of tribal community. Many new parents arenít around extended family and have little support. Many New Moms feel they have to do it all themselves and this starts the slow downhill shuffle of not good enough. In reality, we are meant to help support new moms. Her job should only be feeding, sleeping, healing and loving the hell out the New Baby. Help her do this. Thatís what friends do.

    From the comments section:

    I love this and would add a few more if your friend has their second baby. When visiting, if you can also be exuberant about the older child. Perhaps play with them, sit with them and ask them questions (and not just "do you like having a little brother/sister?"), grab some books and read to them. Part of your friend's heart is maybe sad that their older child is getting so much less attention than the baby. If you know the child well, offering to take them for an hour or two is huge. Or offering to sit with baby while your friend takes older kid to park for an hour...with their cell phone on for your call!

    Also, going to the store w two kids is a major ordeal, at first, so if your at the market, see if your friend is out of essentials. And that first week when the partner goes back to work is when the new mom is often overwhelmed but the offers to help have dried up. Poke around that week with some offers of sandwiches, a latte, a quick visit, etc. lastly, don't take offense if your friend prefers texting to calls or visits, she is probably not getting much rest and the "sleep while baby sleeps" does not apply with another kid.

    And if you bring food, maybe consider fun kid snacks, too, so while she's nursing, when the older kid is starving, it's easier. (that's me now...nursing and toddler tantruming for food).

    My "Mommy & Me" community of supportive moms also signs up the mom for a "mealtrain" on the website and it has been a huge help to all of us. Sign your friend up and post it on their facebook page to encourage an organized delivery of much-needed munchables.

    PSA: When Visiting A New Mom
  2. BingBangBoom that's how babies are made
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    #2


    Oh how I wish someone would come over & clean the toilets for me!

    "Thank you so much. No matter what, nothing is possible without you behind the scenes bustin heads and takin names. Thank you again. Everything you have done for me means a lot and nothing has gone unnoticed. I love you so much and thank you for saying 'I do.'"
  3. Keep Calm and Ride Unicorns
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    #3
    Quote Originally Posted by Rissa*Rawr View Post


    Oh how I wish someone would come over & clean the toilets for me!
    Right? I had a few people come over and cook for me, if they would have cleaned I would have loved them FOREVER.
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    #4
    Oh man, YES! Awesome article!
  5. I Will Rise Above
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    #5
    I've seen this before and I absolutely love it! You should post it on FB so I can share it

    The invalidating the birthing experience was a huge one for me with LM. It was/is VERY hard on me how her birth went and I HATED it when people told me I was "silly" because it upset me or should just "be happy she was healthy". Already hormonal mother omg I was like a tiger. Could be why no one came to help clean

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    #6
    Quote Originally Posted by HisByzantineLove View Post
    I've seen this before and I absolutely love it! You should post it on FB so I can share it

    The invalidating the birthing experience was a huge one for me with LM. It was/is VERY hard on me how her birth went and I HATED it when people told me I was "silly" because it upset me or should just "be happy she was healthy". Already hormonal mother omg I was like a tiger. Could be why no one came to help clean

    Here, too. Don't know how many people said, 'It's JUST a csection'.
  7. BingBangBoom that's how babies are made
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    #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Sindorella View Post
    Right? I had a few people come over and cook for me, if they would have cleaned I would have loved them FOREVER.
    I had friends bring an enormous amount of food to me in the hospital (along with a 6 pack of Shock Top )... That's more than I could ask for

    "Thank you so much. No matter what, nothing is possible without you behind the scenes bustin heads and takin names. Thank you again. Everything you have done for me means a lot and nothing has gone unnoticed. I love you so much and thank you for saying 'I do.'"
  8. I Will Rise Above
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    #8
    Quote Originally Posted by huladangelo View Post
    Here, too. Don't know how many people said, 'It's JUST a csection'.
    Oh I know that phrase makes me want to puke. It might be "JUST" for you but it wasn't a "JUST" for me.

    btw I got my diaper yesterday
  9. Keep Calm and Ride Unicorns
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    #9
    Quote Originally Posted by HisByzantineLove View Post
    I've seen this before and I absolutely love it! You should post it on FB so I can share it

    The invalidating the birthing experience was a huge one for me with LM. It was/is VERY hard on me how her birth went and I HATED it when people told me I was "silly" because it upset me or should just "be happy she was healthy". Already hormonal mother omg I was like a tiger. Could be why no one came to help clean

    Consider it shared.

    The invalidating the birth experience was a big thing for me, too. I had two sections and they actually went very smoothly and my recovery was great... and apparently that was enough for people to act like I didn't actually give birth to my girls, they were just removed from me and *I* didn't do anything. So frustrating. I still went through giving birth, it was just a different experience than theirs was. I hate how some women turn it into a competition.
  10. I Will Rise Above
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    #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Sindorella View Post
    Consider it shared.

    The invalidating the birth experience was a big thing for me, too. I had two sections and they actually went very smoothly and my recovery was great... and apparently that was enough for people to act like I didn't actually give birth to my girls, they were just removed from me and *I* didn't do anything. So frustrating. I still went through giving birth, it was just a different experience than theirs was. I hate how some women turn it into a competition.

    Oh I agree. It's ridiculous.
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