There is nothing more rewarding than giving birth to a newborn baby and being able to take him or her home after nine months of unpredictable cravings, hormones, and pains. But parenting doesn’t get any easier after childbirth, as a recent online survey reveals that the most common struggles for parents in the first year include lack of sleep, the baby’s ability to sleep, feeding, recovery from birth, and taking care of their other children. Something that we must remember is that these struggles come with the pursuit of raising independent children.
Just as numerous organizations such as UnaKids, a nonprofit that sends orphans in war torn countries to school, strives to teach children to be self-sufficient, parents must do the same thing for their young ones. However at this stage, your child is going to need all the help that he or she can get, so scrap any notion you have of teaching your children independence while they’re still at a very vulnerable stage of infancy. Often parents will opt for the “cry it out” method in hopes that their baby will learn how to stop crying on his own, yet science has shown that excessive crying can be harmful to your baby’s development.
As difficult and frustrating as attachment parenting can be, one of the most effective ways of forming this early bond of trust is by being responsive to all of their babies’ cries, their needs. As Dr. Sears reminds us all, babies cry to communicate with us, not to manipulate. The 3am morning cries are something that we just have to cope with.
Despite how incredibly hard the early stages of motherhood and fatherhood can be, many parents fail to recognise when they need to ask for extra hands from a loved one, more so when they need help from a professional counsellor. In the same online survey discussed earlier, about half of the participants claimed that they would only seek professional help if they couldn’t cope with their issues anymore, and one third of them even said they would wait until they hit rock bottom.
Parents have a tendency to put on a brave face when asked about the amount of effort and energy they have to exert in the first few months of child rearing. It’s true when they say that no amount of reading will fully prepare you in all the trials and tribulations of having a baby. Only the experience itself can you fully grasp what you will endure, but that doesn’t mean that you have to downplay all the obstacles you’re going through. Fellow parents will attest to the fact that parenting is insanely difficult, and it takes a lot of discipline. We are only human after all, so there’s really no harm in asking for a little help when we need it.
Remember that you don’t need to hit rock bottom before you seek for professional counselling. There are numerous services and pregnancy hotlines out there that provide the support for new parents, so that you won’t have to go through this tough time alone.
About the Author
Ashley Garrison is a full-time mother to three kids. Though she has no professional experience in family health and child rearing, Ashley is the oldest in her family of eight kids and often acted as the stand-in or even a second mother whenever her parents needed a little help. She believes that her early exposure to parenting gives her the edge when it comes to giving advice on raising infants. Currently, she is completing her last semester of online studies in early childhood education.
Gestational diabetes mellitus – also known as GDM, is diabetes which can occur during pregnancy. Many women who’ve been diagnosed with GDM won’t have diabetes after their baby is born, though some continue to have high levels of blood glucose and need treatment. Most women who are diagnosed with GDM have a normal pregnancy, labour and baby. It’s important that GDM is monitored and controlled, because risk factors increase when blood sugar levels remain high.
Many of us enjoy a cup of coffee or two a day and would find it difficult to give up. The good news is that even breastfeeding mothers can continue to drink coffee, or tea in moderation.
With a newborn comes many new skills to learn – one of them being how to safely wrap a baby. Wrapping (also known as swaddling) is a great strategy for parents to help their baby settle. Yet, new parents may understandably feel worried about their baby’s safety and getting it right. Read on for step-by-step guidelines on how to safely wrap a baby, plus some additional tips for safe wrapping.
One small person in a family is a very different arrangement than two, or more children. When a new baby comes into the mix, dynamics change and everyone needs to shuffle around until new positions are found.
Many parents have heard of bottle propping, also known as prop feeding. And most of us have seen babies sucking quietly away on their own.
Bottle propping is when, instead of the baby being held to drink their bottle, they are on their own. The bottle is supported by a pillow or blanket, even a soft toy so that it’s angled with the milk filling the neck of the bottle and the teat. The baby lies in their cot/pram/on the floor sucking away on their own.