Did your friend just have a baby? Or maybe she’s having a baby soon? Here are six thoughtful things you can do to help her out during this exciting time.
1. Plan your visit with her.
Having a baby is one of the biggest moments of your life, and everyone is always excited to meet the new bundle of joy. If your friend has a lot of family visiting though, sometimes the best thing you can do is to give your friend and her baby a little bit of time and space.
It’s exhausting for new moms who are learning to take care of a newborn while trying to healing from the delivery to have multiple visitors all at once. Never show up at the hospital or her house unannounced, it will just add to the stress she’s already feeling.
A thoughtful gesture would be to text or call her to let her know you’re thinking about her, and ask her if she would prefer you to visit now or the next week. In a week she most likely won’t have as many visitors, which means you’ll get more one on one time with her and the baby.
2. Lend a listening ear.
Giving birth is one of the most life changing moments anyone can experience, and each birth is unique and different. Let your friend tell you all about her baby’s birth, how she felt during the experience, and how she feels now.
If there is something about the birth she is unhappy about or something that caused her stress or trauma, talking about it with a good friend can be therapeutic.
3. Help her with the laundry.
Babies spit up a lot, which means they dirty multiple outfits and burp rags a day. Clothes pile up fast and it’s most often a task that’s at the bottom of the to do list. Help your friend by offering to wash or fold a load of baby clothes.
Doing a load of laundry would be especially helpful if your friend doesn’t have her own washer and dryer and has to go to the laundromat. Because going to the laundromat can feel like an overwhelming task with a newborn.
4. Ask if she needs something from the store.
Next time you go to the grocery store, call your new mom friend and ask if there is anything she needs. It can be difficult to get out of the house during the first few weeks. Plus it’s important to minimize exposing the newborn to all the germs in public places.
This can be especially helpful if your friend’s baby was born early or spontaneously. She may not have had a chance to purchase essential items or restock her pantry before the birth.
5. Offer to wash the baby bottles or do the dishes.
New babies eat almost every two hours. That’s a lot of baby bottles that need to be washed – and it takes up a lot of time. Offer to wash the baby’s bottles or if she’s exclusively nursing, offer to do your friend’s dishes. She will appreciate it more than you know.
6. Talk about something other than the baby
Sometimes, after having a baby, new moms can feel like they’re losing their identity. It can be thoughtful to talk about something other than the birth and the baby.
This isn’t the time to talk about heated or emotionally charged topics, keep the conversation uplifting or funny. Maybe you have a funny story or video to share, or you both have a passion for celebrity gossip? It can bring a sense of normalcy back to your friend to talk about lighthearted things you both enjoy.
Do one or more things from this list, and your new-mom friend will appreciate your thoughtfulness.