After labour, loved ones want to see mother and a baby as soon as possible. However, too early and frequent visits can be really exhausting. To avoid situations like this, we suggest how to set some ground rules for visiting a newborn.
The birth of your happiness is an event that you would like to share with the whole world. However, before you allow this world to overwhelm you with its joy, learn how and what rules you shall set and what will allow you and your baby to get the right amount of rest and intimacy.
The first days with a baby are the most important moments in your and your partner’s life. These are beautiful but also difficult moments. Immediately after delivery, mother and a baby need peace and quiet. Not everyone understands this. Some people eagerly await seeing the baby and can come without notice, which is not a pleasant surprise. Especially in a situation when a labour proved to be difficult and the mother's body needs regeneration.
Therefore, before giving birth, give a signal to your family and friends to wait until you notify them that you are ready for visits.
Take care of both your and other mum's comfort in the hospital room. Every woman giving birth has the right to peace, quiet and respect for intimacy after delivery. Therefore, if you feel up to meet with your family, invite only the closest one next to whom you will feel comfortable in a nightgown or while breastfeeding.
But if you do not feel up to any visits in hospital, you have the right to say “no”. Labour is one of the most difficult and exhausting experiences in life. All you have to do is invite your guests to your home.
Nobody likes to be surprised, especially, brand new parents who have a lot of new duties, such as laying a baby for a nap, feeding, changing and bathing. Care of a new family member initially appears as black magic and it is not an easy thing to do. That is why, you shall feel free to ask your friends and family not to come without notice, otherwise they will not be able to count on your hospitality.
You can invite your family even a few days after delivery. Especially when your mother or mother-in-law are willing to help with the child. Their visit then will not only be a social pleasure but will allow you to rest for a moment.
It is worth to invite your friends only a few weeks after delivery. To avoid crowds, plan your calendar visits with your partner. Invite no more than two or three people. Thanks to that, you will avoid noise and a large amount of stimuli that can frighten and tire your baby.
Time of the visit shouldn’t exceed one or one and a half hour. In order not to be rude, the best is to schedule the time of the visit with your guests in advance. Explain your guests why a longer visit is not recommended. You can rely on the argument that a newborn baby is not prepared for a flood of new stimuli.
Remember! For newborns a daily routine is extremely important. Too long visits can disturb it.
Of course some people will not understand that and would be willing to hang out with new parents for hours. If your friends are staying too long, don't be afraid to say: "My dear ones, I am already tired and the baby is demanding my sole parental attention. Today, can we say goodbye to each other and maybe arrange another meeting?" Probably all guests will understand and accept your request.
Newborn health is the most important thing. His immune system is just beginning to mature, so ask guests to confirm before visiting that they are healthy. Feel free to refuse the visit of your aunt who says she has "a runny nose only". Politely ask her to come another time.
It is a good habit to wash your hands whenever you come home. However, not everyone practice it. Therefore, due to subsequent contact with the newborn (e.g. stroking the hands and head) and newborn’s things, ask visitors to wash their hands carefully.
The substances contained in cigarettes and the smell of cigarette smoke even on clothing can irritate the newborn's respiratory system. Therefore, when someone needs to smoke, let them know that you must end the visit.
Some children are generally more sensitive to smells. So you can politely ask your loved ones that you know they have a weakness for strong perfumes to use them less abundantly on the day of the visit.
A seemingly healthy preschooler may be during the incubation of an infectious disease, the symptoms of which will appear only after a few days, e.g. smallpox or scarlet fever. That is why visits of preschool children should be kept to a minimum.
And when your several-year-old is already invited with you to visit an infant, make sure that he won't scream, won't scare the baby and won't rock the stroller too much. Stop all his attempts to hold the baby.
You decide what your guests can do. Your mum or mother-in-law will probably want to hug the newborn and you can agree for that. But handing a baby from one hands to another is unnecessary and can frighten a little one.
Also, there is no need for loved ones to kiss a newborn. They can be carriers of bacteria and viruses, which, although they do not harm an adult, an infant can. All you have to do is show the baby on your hands and put it in a stroller, cot or hold in your arms.
Noise, telephone ringing, raised tone and commotion during visits can wake up or scare the baby. It can be too much stimulation for the young nervous system. In such situation newborns often fall asleep. However some of them can become whiny. Therefore, do not be afraid to ask your guests to set phones to vibration mode and make sure that they speak in a calm manner.
Before the visit, agree with the partner how you will divide your duties. Who looks after the baby and who brews tea and serves cake. During the initial visits of the immediate family, when the mother is exhausted by childbirth and night feeding, let your partner to take care of the latter.
Not every mother wants to breastfeed in the presence of guests. Therefore, if you feel that you need a moment of intimacy with your baby, apologize and go to another room. Your partner will take care of the rest. You can arrange it with him in advance so that he does not feel surprised when you will be living room in the middle of visit.
Your parents and close friends who have children themselves often offer help. They want to clean, cook and change the baby. Feel free to accept support. During this time you can relax, lie back or just chat with them.
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