Help for new parents
New, as well as experienced parents soon realize that babies require a lot of work. Meeting the constant needs of a newborn involves time and energy and often takes parents away from other responsibilities in the home.
Although many parents do fine on their own, having someone else helping with the household responsibilities usually makes the adjustment to a new baby easier. Parents can concentrate on the needs of mother and baby, rather than the laundry or dirty dishes.
Helpers can be family, friends, or a paid home care provider. A family member such as the new baby's grandmother or aunt may be able to come for a few days or longer. Home care providers offer a variety of services, from nursing care of the new mother and baby to housekeeping and care of other children.
Whomever you decide to have as helpers, be sure to make clear all the things you expect them to do. Communication is important in preventing hurt feelings or misunderstandings when emotions are fragile during these first few weeks. It is generally best for the new mother to be relieved of all responsibilities except the feeding and care of herself and her baby. This is especially important if she is breastfeeding. Others should assume the chores in the home such as cooking, cleaning, laundry, and grocery shopping. This will prevent the new mother from limiting her time with her baby to take care of the house.
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