5 Tips For Stressed-Out Parents Looking After A Newborn
As a new parent, you may feel stressed like you’ve never felt before while caring for your bundle of joy. The constant crying, diaper changes, and restless baby can deprive you and your partner precious hours of sleep. Not to forget the various well-intended visitors who sporadically drop by to see your baby. All of this will add to your fatigue.
At the same time, it’s natural to feel like you’re not doing enough for your child. Stats indicate only less than 12% of parents feel ready to raise a baby. So you shouldn’t worry much. A newborn baby comes with a learning curve that gets better with time. But, you can’t take care of your child at the expense of your health.
When you don’t get enough sleep, establish boundaries or ask for help while taking care of your baby, you will experience burnout. This will challenge the limits of your mental health and make you neglect your baby. Therefore when the stress gets too much, you need to find a way out. Here’s what you can do while looking after your newborn:
1.Check for birth injuries and involve the law
Sometimes the reason why your child is fussy, crying, or unable to find comfort is because of reasons beyond your control, such as a birth injury. These situations arise when the hospital mishandles your delivery and hurts your child in the process, so you have no choice but to involve the law. If your child shows signs like trembling muscles, excessive drooling, and trouble lifting their head, these are telltale signs of conditions like cerebral palsy.
You should contact the Birth Injury Justice Center to get details on pursuing a cerebral palsy lawsuit. A reputable establishment will help you sue the hospital and the doctors responsible. Apart from getting financial compensation that will help you get your child’s treatment started right away, this will remove an immense weight off your chest. You may be feeling guilty for your child’s condition, but you should know it wasn’t your fault and instead focus on helping your child get better.
2.Ask for help
Even if your child is healthy, parenting is still hard. However, being a parent doesn’t mean you cannot ask for help. You are not superhuman, and caring for a baby doesn’t come to anybody instinctively. The best service you can get is in the form of a babysitter, so you should consider getting one. Locating a good and well-qualified babysitter is vital in helping you take care of your child. Before you let a stranger near your baby, you will need to research.
You should set aside some time to speak with friends and family to get a list of reputable caregivers. Some childcare services are registered private companies, which you can find online. You should visit their website and learn about these high-end companies’ qualifications and standards. Your other option is to get a list of names, browse through each babysitter’s social media, check for criminal records and references, and look into hiring.
A professional babysitter will help you and your spouse take care of the child. You will get ample time to sleep, have date nights again and have the energy to tend to your child, which will help ease your stress.
3.Let go of perfectionism
You will receive plenty of unsolicited advice as you embark on your new journey as a parent. The people around you will try to make you feel ashamed of the way you are raising your childand assume your baby has developmental issues. This will also actively contribute to your stress when you feel pressured by comments and social expectations of raising a baby.
Over 70% of American mothers feel pressured to raise their baby a certain way. So as a mother, you should communicate with your partner how you feel about motherhood and what scares you. As a father, you should support your partner and take fatherhood seriously, investing time into helping your partner raise the baby. You should also learn to distance yourself from comments and choose to listen to a pediatrician, as most of these are a reflection of the people who are making them.
Unless your baby’s doctor raises an alarm, there is no reason to be disturbed. You should also make peace with the fact your house will never be picture perfect again. Part of raising a baby is reducing your standards to a manageable level. As long as you maintain basic hygiene, you should have nothing to fret over.
Friends and family tend to drop by to see the new baby. While it’s a kind gesture, sometimes your guests can overstay their welcome or visit you at inconvenient times, depriving you of precious moments to relax. For the sake of your well-being and your child, you should establish boundaries. Let your friends and family know when you’re okay with them coming over through group texts.
At the same time, when your guests are over, inform them on how to hold the baby and how often they need to wash their hands. A newborn baby is prone to infections; their immunity is far too weak to deal with microbes. You should also let your guests know that they cannot kiss the baby since this may lead to contracting virus-like herpes, which can cause sores. This will only add to your stress and make you feel more worried.
5.Avoid micromanaging each other
Micromanaging each other will not help the process. Instead, it will make you more resistant to change. You and your partner should read different books on raising a child and discuss valuable pointers with each other. As a mother, let your partner play their part in diaper changing, bottle feeding, and burping the baby without getting in between. As long as your partner’s technique is not injuring the baby, you have no reason to get involved.
As a father, you shouldn’t expect the mother to do all the grunt work for the baby. You should also avoid telling the mother how to feed, hold and cuddle the baby because you do it differently. Micromanaging will only lead to resentment between you and your partner. If you feel concerned about the child, choose to communicate instead of dictate. If you’re struggling to share your thoughts, you should look into family therapy and help a therapist guide you ineffective communication.
Raising a baby is an incredible task. There is more than one type of stress involved in taking care of a baby, and when you allow all your worries to accumulate, it takes a toll on you. Your baby may be agitated because of a birth injury, so make sure you get that looked at and file for a case to remedy the painful situation. You should also look into hiring a babysitter to get additional hands onboard to raise your child.
Don’t forget to let go of maintaining superficial standards and never hesitate to ask for space. Part of your stress may also come from micromanaging your partner. Let your partner handle the child in their way unless the baby is unsafe or getting injured by their techniques. With these few measures, you will manage to thaw some of the stress surrounding you.
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