There really is nothing like the arrival of a new baby. There is so much happiness and joy and celebration from family and friends. But while new moms and dads do want to celebrate their new bundle with the world, some of it can be overwhelming and even stressful, especially during the first few hours and days of baby’s life. Having two girls myself, I can say that I learned some of this the hard way!
The next time you are off to celebrate a new baby in your life, make sure to consider this new baby etiquette…
1. Call first. Before you visit the hospital or the home, make sure to call. An unexpected visitor can be really stressful for new parents!
2. Be quick. Don’t over-stay your welcome. Visits should be quick – like 15-20 minutes. Unless you have been invited to stay longer, make it brief.
3. Bring gifts to their home, not the hospital. Yes, a new baby is a great reason to give a gift. But make sure to bring that gift to the home instead of the hospital. New parents don’t need more to load into their car when it’s finally time to go.
4. Help. Our default is to offer to hold the baby so the new parent can shower/clean/cook, etc. Instead, YOU should do the cleaning and cooking so the new parent can cuddle her little one without stressing about things that need to get done!
5. Remember, food is love. I am not kidding you, a home-cooked meal is one of the most glorious things a new mom can receive. There’s nothing like having a warm soup or pasta dish arrive on your doorstep along with yummy sides and a tasty dessert. This little act of kindness will not be forgotten!
6. Bring coffee. If your new mama friend is on your way in the morning, stop by your favorite coffee shop and bring her something to drink. Sometimes, coffee is the only saving grace for a new mama on very little sleep.
7. Send a simple note. As a new parent, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed and somewhat alone. A sweet and simple text message like “How’s your day?” or “Hope you are having fun with that sweet babe of yours!” can make a new mama’s day!
8. Mail them something. If you live far away from that new little bundle, send a special something in the mail. Receiving a gift with a sweet note from the postal worker is such a nice surprise!
9. Babysit the older siblings. One of the challenges of a second or third pregnancy is devoting enough time to all of your kiddos. Offer to babysit the older siblings so mama can get a little bit of alone time with her newborn.
10. Have something delivered. It’s difficult to get out of the house with a newborn baby. One way you can offer help is to send a delivery service. Dinner, diapers, a cleaning company – all of these would be amazing gifts for a new mom!
11. Give them a “Friday night in.” New parents rarely get a date night out. In fact, most of the time they are perfectly happy to stay in with their new little wonder. Be an amazing friend and offer to come over on a Friday night to have a “date night” in. Play games, order pizza, make a night of it!
12. Keep your opinions to yourself. It goes without saying that new moms are a bit uneasy. Their hormones are all out of whack and every little thing is making them weepy. Even though you might have a suggestion for feeding the baby or how to help the baby sleep, keep it to yourself. :)