FRIENDS' GUIDE TO VISITING A NEW MOMMY (1 of 4)

>> Tuesday, March 30, 2010

So you're friends with someone who just had a baby. Here's a few pointers for making yourself useful when you visit the new mommy, and being the kind of friend she wants to invite back instead of the kind that she silently wishes would just leave.

  1. Keep your voice down. NEW MOMMY's ears are hypersensitive from all those hormones flooding her system. She can practically hear her baby breathing from two rooms away, so try to speak softly, laugh quietly and just be generally low-key.
  2. Bring food. The last thing NEW MOMMY needs to be doing is cooking right now. Check with her before you come over to see if there's anything that sounds yummy, and don't take her polite "Oh don't worry about it! You don't need to bring anything!" for an answer. Insist. 
  3. Don't hog the BABY. Most people who visit a NEW MOMMY think they're helping if they offer to hold the baby for her so that she can "get things done". Believe me, that's not really helping. Instead, offer to "get things done" for her, so she can have more guilt-free uninterrupted time with her baby. 
  4. Sit down when you hold BABY. Nothing freaks a NEW MOMMY out more than worrying whether her bundle of fragile innocence is safe in your arms. And she may be too exhausted and polite to tell you.
  5. Do the dishes. If there are chores that have obviously been let go, get yourself up from the couch and be useful. Clean up the kitchen. Offer to put on a load of laundry. Ask if she needs anything picked up from the grocery store.
  6. Don't stay too long. Doesn't matter how chipper she sounds, NEW MOMMY tires easily. Come to visit, help out a bit, and then say goodbye. Unless of course, you're sticking around to scrub toilets or weed the flowerbeds.
  7. Last, but not least, don't stop visiting (and helping) after the first couple weeks. Energetic hormones carry NEW MOMMY through the first 10 days or so. New mommyhood starts to get really rough about the time everyone has forgotten about you and gone back to their lives. So stay in touch.

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© Sarah K. Asaftei, 2009 unless otherwise sourced. Use allowed by express written permission only.

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