When you become a Mum for the first time, having visitors over can be extremely overwhelming. It’s so lovely to know that people care and want to come, but it’s also really tough to deal with.
To the visitor it might not seem it, but those first few months can be really difficult. A new mum can need space and a lot of understanding.
Understanding that life will never be the same for her. You can’t just show up unannounced and expect a warm welcome; it just doesn’t work like that.
If you are or aren’t a parent, and want to visit a new Mum, here are some do’s and don’t’s …
- Let them know if you’re visiting – especially message them to check if they’re up for having visitors!
- Bring food – for you AND them! Even bring food that they can eat as a meal over the next few days. Cooking / preparing meals as a new parent is quite difficult.
- Ask how the mum AND dad are
- Listen to the answers
- Offer to make them a cup of tea / coffee or help out around the house – heck just putting the dishes away is super helpful!
- Expect to only stay for a few minutes
- Look for cues to leave
- Remember that their life has changed forever and they may not be able to “go out” like they used to
- ^^ This includes Mum AND Dad – Dad’s are parents too!
- Turn up unannounced
- Expect to hold the baby – they could be sleeping and the golden rule of parenting is “never wake a sleeping baby!”
- Overstay your welcome – watch out for those cues to leave!
- Visit when you’re sick
- Eat all of the Mum’s food / snacks
- Get upset if you ask to hold the baby and the parents say no
- Kiss the baby – a newborn baby has a fresh immune system and isn’t vaccinated against anything. Save the kisses until they’re a wee bit older.
- Wear loads of perfume, or just have been smoking – baby’s noses are super sensitive to smell!
- Talk about how bad it can get (if you’re an experienced parent) – a tired parent does not want to hear how much it’s going to get worse
- Expect their lives to be the same before children
- Tell them how to be a parent, or what to do with their baby – not helpful at all
As a visitor, being kind and considerate of the Mother at all times is absolutely crucial. For the most part we want visitors but parenting is hard, so knowing a few do’s and don’t’s as a visitor really does help.
Do you have anything you’d add to this list?