Learning fourth trimester etiquette.
No visitors, Only StaffDr Oscar Serrallach
We love this joking but not really quote from Dr Oscar Serrallach’s book, The Postnatal Depletion Cure. It really highlights the important shift from visiting the new baby to supporting the new mum.
Here are our top 5 tips for visiting a new mama.
- Your visit should never be more than an hour. Take note of when you arrive and unless you are stuck holding the baby while mama is in the depths of a much needed nap, be mindful of how long you have been there.
- As soon as you arrive, you become the host! Pop the kettle on, get mama and yourself a drink and some food if she is hungry. Load the dishwasher, pop some laundry on or ask if anything else needs to be done. If you aren’t comfortable helping a new mama like this, then dare we say it, you shouldn’t be visiting in those early weeks!
- If you hold the baby, make sure mama uses this time for herself – takes a shower, enjoys some nourishing food, does some stretches, has a nap. Anything that seems near impossible when she is home alone with her babe.
- Never show up empty handed. We aren’t taking about fluffy toys and flowers, we are referring to homemade meals. The most loving, thoughtful and supportive thing you can do for a new mama is bring her delicious nourishing food. Flowers are beautiful but they often end up neglected in a vase of old water for weeks before anyone remembers to remove them. Be sure to read our journal post on tip for delivering food to a new mama.
- Be understanding of last minute cancellations. There is no rhyme or reason to anything in those early weeks, unexpected turns, trials and tantrums can really overwhelm a new mama and the last thing she may want is visitors. You can always drop some food round and text once you leave.