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New Mom Support – Who’s Helping You?
I remember when my daughter, Bryley, was turning day and night. He was 7 weeks old and stayed awake from 3pm to 7am. If I put her down she would start crying so I – striving to be perfect, do it all mom – got up and kicked her size night. Needless to say, by 7 in the morning, I not only felt completely exhausted, but also lonely, bitter, confused and confused.
The strange thing is:
It never occurred to me to ask anyone for help.
Sounds familiar? If so, you’re not alone:
A lot of moms I talk to are trying to do it ALL on their own.
Are you trying to do it all?
Answer the following questions to find out:·
- When was the last time you asked for (and got) some real help?
- How many times in the last month have you screamed inside yourself?
- title “HELP!” hoping that someone will somehow magically hear
- you and take over even for a little while?
- What do you do when you need support, rest or a sufficient break?
If your answers indicate that you are a “do it all” (or “do too much”) mom, you may benefit from creating a support network dedicated just to you. My own “support network for new mothers” ensures that the “must do’s” get done and that you get the chance to take care of yourself.
FOLLOW THESE STEPS TO CREATE YOUR “NEW MOM SUPPORT NETWORK”:
1. Learn to feel good about asking for help.
Our culture does not teach us that it is beneficial for people to ask for help. Rather, we are taught to value independence and see asking for help as a sign of weakness and lack: “If you were a REALLY well-adjusted and capable parent, you could handle everything on your own!” the voice in our head declares.
Is this what you want to teach your child?
By taking the time to ask for help, you can become the calm and content mother you want to be. Answer the following questions to understand why it’s hard for you to ask for help and to get the support you need more easily!
· What am I afraid of when asking for support?
· How does it change my view of myself if I admit that I can’t do it alone?
· What would I need to reach out to others to meet my own needs?
· What am I afraid other people will think if I ask them for help or if they know I get it?
· How would I feel if I had a system to support me that could actually help me feel better day by day?
2. Change your focus:
If the negative voices list reasons why you shouldn’t ask for help, replace them with thoughts about how you can benefit from the help you receive.
- Be a happier and more effective mom.
- Feeling better physically, mentally and spiritually.
- Feel that you like and appreciate people support you and you are connected with them.
- Feel less stressed and better prepared to deal with the challenges that arise.
- Feel less bitter and burned out.
- Teach your child to feel comfortable asking for and getting the support they need.
- Teach your children to value themselves.
3. Proceed as follows:
Choose your top 3 needs (rest, solitude, emotional or parenting support, connection, clean home, nutritious meals, closeness, etc.) and choose 1-3 people who can support you in meeting those needs. Your supports can be family, friends, groups, professionals, etc.
Support systems for new mothers often include:
- Partner or best friend
- A doula
- New mom life coach
- A friend (especially another new mom)
- Support group
- Game group
- Childcare (so you have time to meet your needs for exercise, intellectual stimulation, artistic expression, socialization, etc.)
- Cleaning, business or meal service
- Health/body specialist (fitness trainer, massage therapist, acupuncturist, chiropractor, nutritionist, etc.)
4. Make a commitment:
Pledge right now:
1: Ask for help at least once in the coming week.
2: Book at least one person from your support network into your life by the end of the next month so that one of your needs can be met each week.
Copyright Claudia Heilbrunn, Meaningful Self
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