Many older moms look back on the newborn time with their child as the best time of their lives. They remember it with bright skies and roses. They feel almost a homesickness for those days. Maybe it truly was a delightful time for them, but that is not the norm!
Most new moms are exhausted from pregnancy, delivery, and the sudden load of caring for a helpless, but often, noisy baby 24/7.
Friends and family could be so much more helpful if they would change the way they talk to new moms. Here are some examples from Dr. Juli Fraga.
It is important that we think about our questions with sensitivity.
- Instead of saying “Isn’t it so exciting?” you might ask “How are you doing?”
- Instead of saying “Enjoy every minute!” you might say “Take it moment to moment.”
- Instead of saying “Don’t you love being a mom?” you might ask “What is it like being a new mom?”
She goes onto say, “When we see a new mom strolling down the sidewalk, we never know about her pregnancy and birth journey and all that it entailed.
“I propose that we begin asking more open-ended questions. These questions can invite women to share their authentic experiences about one of life’s most difficult and meaningful roles. These questions may lead to a more intimate dialogue about a woman’s postpartum experience. If she is struggling with the baby blues or postpartum depression, your questions may come as a welcome invitation for her to begin sharing that everything is not “joyful.”
“And, if she does disclose that she’s feeling down or blue, let her know that she is not alone and that support is available. After all, not only does it take a village to raise a child, it takes a village to support new mothers, too.”
Follow Dr. Juli Fraga on Twitter: www.twitter.com/dr_fraga
Huffington Post has a number of good articles on Baby Blues and Postpartum Depression.
Your Child’s Journey articles on Baby Blues and Postpartum Depression.