How to Manage The Stress When A New Baby Arrives In Your Home
Coping with the first few weeks after giving birth or adopting a baby can be a stressful time for new parents. Finding a rhythm and schedule to make this transition healthy takes time, patience, love and realistic expectations.
The first few weeks and months can present many challenges and unexpected surprises, but these new experiences are part of the road to evolving into a family.
Discovering the patience and perseverance to navigate these early emotional hurdles will often make the relationship between parents stronger.
Here are suggestions that may make this potentially stressful time somewhat easier:
* Seek out support groups, helpful experiences from other new parents, information from books and the Internet to provide tips for dealing with newborns. Doctors’ offices, prenatal classes, and friends also can be solid sources of information. Gather this information, sort through it and find out which sections will work for you.
* After an infant arrives home, welcome help from friends, family, and neighbors. Don’t be shy about accepting offers from others to let them take care of the baby, clean the house, cook the meals and run errands for you. This is often the time you need a lot of assistance.
* Take care of yourself and your spouse or partner. It is quite easy to become so consumed in caring for the baby that parents forget their own health and well-being.
Plan to exercise, take naps and sleep when the baby sleeps, along with fitting in some leisure activities. Parents should talk with each other frequently about any adjustments that need to be made in terms of time spent together, their sex life and plans for the joys of being a family.
* Set up a budget before the child’s arrival. Review your finances frequently and pay attention to the changes that occur with new expenses because of the baby.
* If there are other children in the family, be sure to set aside time to make them feel special and recognize their needs. Try to avoid letting their new sibling receive all of the limelight and special attention. Feelings of displacement and rejection can develop in older brothers and sisters without parental awareness and care.
Remember that the first few weeks and months after the birth of a new baby are usually the most stressful but time and teamwork can smooth the road for many happy times in the future.
Harold H. LeCrone, Jr., Ph.D. Copyright © 2011