Existing supports and friendships can change when you become parents. If one of you works away from home, seeking help from family and friends is particularly important.
Seek and accept support from whomever you feel comfortable inviting into your home or helping with your child. For example, consider seeking and accepting support from family, if appropriate to your circumstances. Where possible, have agreed strategies for seeking help for different difficulties (e.g., We will call your mother if we need help with cleaning the house, we will go to the Maternal Child Health nurse if we need help with sleeping, we will go to our friend’s house for a sleep over if we need to catch up on our sleep).
CONVERSATION STARTER: Identify your support people
- Who can we can draw on for support following childbirth?
- What services are there in our community that we can draw on? See our resources page for some ideas!
Be aware of the pressure and the expectations of others (e.g., parents, in-laws, family, colleagues) and trust your own knowledge and understanding of your baby. Discuss and negotiate whether extended family are being supportive or intrusive. If you are becoming overwhelmed, tactfully limit visitors and establish boundaries by making sure visitors don’t outstay their welcome or turn up at inconvenient hours. Consider having a word/phrase/excuse to use if visitors are becoming overwhelming.
RELATED: Seeking professional help