While seeing the new moms with their babies, we thought about how many people don’t know what to do and bring when visiting a new mother. We have completely lost the concept of supporting a new mom and the family and coming together as a village to help. She is going through so much after having a baby, and she could use an extra pair of hands without having to ask. Thankfully, most people do want to help, but they’re not just sure how. This is why we’ve come up with a list of the 10 best things you can do for a new mom.
Drop Off Food
New parents don’t have the energy to make or even think about what they will have for a meal. Shoot, they sometimes also need to be reminded that they have to stop and eat! Be a dear and drop off a meal to them, preferably something they can throw in the fridge or freezer and then microwave later. Please do NOT ring the doorbell when you are at their door! (By doing that, you could wake up mom and or baby.
Not cool!) Give the door a knock (assuming they don’t have dogs), and if no one can answer, send them a text that food waiting is at their doorstep. If you are coming by unannounced, the family probably doesn’t feel like making small talk, so leave the food with a text and go on your way. Don’t worry. This should only last a few months, so you will see your friend soon.
Set Up a Meal Train
This is probably the best thing you can do for a new parent. Mealtrain.com is seriously a new mom’s best friend. Set it up so that you and a bunch of friends and their family members can pitch in to make sure the new parents are being fed during those crazy first days and months.
If you are the leader of the meal train, you can provide everybody a list of their favorite foods, restaurants to order from (and specific orders), and grocery store items. You want to get the new parents a combination of healthy meals, snacks, and a few sweet treats.
Bring Diapers and Wipes
If you’re not going to bring the family food, then bring something useful. No parent can ever have enough diapers or wipes. This is always a safe and much-needed gift to bring.
Be sure to ask what size is appropriate first! You don’t want to bring them the wrong size.
If money is a little tight or the new mom doesn’t need you to bring anything, offer to help clean up around the house. She will probably say no but do it anyway. She will honestly be so grateful and glad that you did.
Look around and see what you can help with. Here are some things to look for:
Watch Her Kids
The new mom is probably dying to take a nap, shower, bath, or all three! Offer to come by and watch all of her kiddos (if she has more than one) and tell her to take all the time she needs. Even if you are just watching her older children, you can help her get some uninterrupted alone time with her newborn.
Help Out with Her To-Do List
She may have a whole list of things to do! Maybe she needs to run and pick up medications at the pharmacy, get her dry cleaning, or buy more diapers. She might want some help finishing her ‘Thank You’ notes and someone to drop them off at the post office. She may need you to find and call a lactation consultant or a postpartum doula.
Whatever is on her to-do list, help her tackle it. You can either go with her and baby to run her errands – she might love getting out of the house – or offer to run the errands for her. Even filling up her car tank with gas would be so much appreciated.
Don’t Immediately Ask to Hold the Baby
After having a baby, everyone wants to come over to see and meet the newest addition. There’s nothing wrong with that! But what is the new mom, chopped liver?! While some mothers are excited to have a friend come over and have an adult conversation and someone other than herself holds the baby, other moms don’t want to hand over their child immediately. Be a good friend and be present for the mother.
Ask how she is doing. Talk about her, and show that you are there to support her and her family. After a little while, then you can ask if you can hold the baby.
Wash Your Hands Before Holding the Baby
A lot of new parents are super germ-conscious, so be sure to wash your hands. Extra points if you do it without them having to ask!
Don’t Freak Out When the Baby Cries
If you didn’t already know this, babies cry. That’s a way that they communicate. Don’t freak out when the little one starts to whimper in your arms and immediately give the baby to mom.
She has to soothe her baby all day and night, so be helpful and calm the baby yourself. If the baby is still fussy after your attempts, then hand the baby over to mom. New mothers want to see you confident while being around and holding their baby, so freaking out makes them freak out. Stay calm.
Help Her Figure Out Her New Baby Products
Who knew that there was so much baby stuff? Some of it can be quite difficult, too. Ask the new mom if she needs help figuring out any of these new products. She may need some help learning how to use her baby carrier, cloth diapers, bottle sterilizer, or baby bouncer, etc.
Look them up on YouTube or read the manual if you don’t know how to assemble and or use them. She already has enough on her plate, trying to take care of herself, her family, and her newborn baby. Learning how to use these things will help make her journey through motherhood easier.