18 best ways to help out a new mom
by Jennifer Salazar Hutcheson
The moment has finally arrived. Mom and dad are ready to leave the hospital and bring their sweet little bundle of joy home. But then it hits. Thoughts like “What am I doing? I’m not ready for this!” come creeping in. Trust me, I’ve been there. Twice. Even after having my second child last year, there are still many times it all feels so new and overwhelming. Many things I thought I was prepared for or experienced with my first shouldn't have been much of a surprise, but some were.
It's Ok to Ask
One thing I learned right away is there are moments when parents can use a helping hand and it’s okay to ask for it! My friends and family were eagerly waiting to see how they could pitch in when the new baby was born. Knowing I couldn't possibly do it all on my own, I leaned on them and shared some of the ways they could help us. Having their help was a huge relief gave us the time we needed to give our new bundle of joy the attention he needed.
How You Can Help a New Mom
If you have someone in your life who is expecting, offer to help once baby arrives. Give mom and dad some bonding time with their new baby, while you lend them a helping hand. Here is a wonderful list of the 18 best ways to help out a new mom.
Meals. Offer to make meals or create a meal train so others can pitch in. Even helping put together a Pinterest board to curate some simple, family favorite recipes to cook later will help during those tiresome moments where parents find themselves asking all the time, “What are we going to do about dinner?”
Food Delivery Service. Use a cool food delivery service app like DoorDash, UberEats or GrubHub for more meal choices from favorite local eateries.
Diaper Subscription. Set up delivery for reoccurring orders of diapers and wipes or a grocery store curbside pickup membership for a month or two.
Movie & Reading Playlist. Put together a playlist on Netflix or another online tv/movie streaming service for those late-night feedings. Another great option is setting up a Kindle or reading list.
Household Chores. Provide some assistance with the necessary household chores like laundry, vacuuming, cleaning bathrooms, etc. Another great option would be to hire a housekeeping service.
Dishes. One of the biggest items on the daily to-do-list is washing dishes. Either help with dish washing (there may be plenty of bottles or breast pump pieces that need constant attention) or bring the family paper plates, cups, and plastic utensils to forgo having to do as many dishes!
Babysit. Offer to babysit while mom gets a good nap in, takes a short walk, showers or even better a nice, hot bubble bath. Reenergizing is key!
Nighttime. Handle a night shift, a feeding, or baby’s nap. These are also great moments for family and friends to bond a little extra with the baby.
Managing Schedule. Encourage and help mom out with making and keeping appointments. Whether it’s a follow-up with her doctor for a postpartum checkup or a nail appointment, keeping mom on track with her day-to-day activities is a big help.
Errands. Run errands she hasn't even thought about yet like filling up gas tank, taking pet to groomers, or returning/exchanging baby gifts.
Diaper Bag Checklist. Make a checklist for the diaper bag. When parents are finally ready to step out with the baby they will either pack everything but the kitchen sink or will forget something important. With a list, they can easily check things off and it's done!
Car Kit. Create a baby emergency/back-up kit for the car that includes: extra clothes, diapers, wipes, bottles, blankets, seasonal items, toys, first aid kit, etc. In a pinch, these items will be GOLD!
Be the Go-To. Offer to be her driver, personal assistant, mom's helper, whatever she needs, as she runs her errands with you by her side.
Text vs. Call. Texting or messaging is a great way to offer help! Whether sending an “I’m on my way” or “At the grocery store, need anything?” text, it may be preferred if baby or mom are resting or enjoying some much-needed quiet time.
Short Visits. When visiting, keep it short & sweet, don’t linger, and be prepared that mom & dad may not be ready for anyone to hold the baby yet. Nothing personal.
Check-in. Help mom out with taking care of her physical and mental needs. Grab a yoga mat and stretch together. She’ll love the physical activity and spending time with another adult.
Encourage Date Nights. Don't forget about bonding time for the parents. Offer your time so the new parents can enjoy a date night and some extra quality time.
Ask. Lastly, just ask! Every mom -and baby- is different which means they may have different needs, so don’t hesitate to make suggestions or ask how you can help the family!
Jennifer Salazar Hutcheson is a Latina mami that was born and raised in New York, relocated to Georgia -where she fell in love with the South- and currently calls North Carolina home. She shares her parenting adventures with her best friend/husband, their two sweet boys, and the pup they rescued, on her personal blog, Mami 2 Mommy.
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