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18 Ways To Help A New Mom

Affiliate Disclosure | in Motherhood | by | with 68 Comments

18 Ways To Help A New Mom

 “What Can I Do To Help?”

If you say this to a mama and she looks at you like it’s a trick question, don’t give up. Sometimes asking for what we need is tricky, you know? Especially when we love, respect, and can’t imagine you scraping lasagna off our plates and taking out our trash! No fear, though, here are some ideas we will love!

1. Run A Couple of Errands. Text me the day before you’re scheduled to drop off a meal and ask if you can pick anything up on your way: toilet paper, bleach-free pads, laundry soap, etc.

2. If I Say No: Text me again a few hours before you stop by. I may have remembered something!

3. Give Me An Afternoon. “Come over about 2 in the afternoon. Hold the baby while I have a hot shower, put me to bed with the baby and then fold all the piles of laundry that have been dumped on the couch, beds or in the room corners. If there’s no laundry to fold yet, do some.” (Gloria Lemay¹)

4. Something Else I Really Knead :) Go in with a friend and pay for a massage therapist to come to the house. Let me pick the date so I can make sure hubby is available to take the kids on a walk. Peace, quiet, and relaxation! (Thanks for this idea, Anna Miller!)

5. Spruce Up My Kitchen. Put a load of dishes in the dishwasher and wipe down my countertops.

6. Make Me a Mood Boosting Air Spritzer. Buy a simple 8 ounce spray bottle and fill it with 2 tablespoons witch hazel and 3/4 cup filtered water.  Add 36 to 48 drops of lavender, rose otto, violet leaf, lemon balm, ylang ylang, clary sage or sandalwood. Ask me if I’d like you to spritz my pillow. Oh, and make up a batch for yourself, too. Let’s be happy together!

7. Don’t Assume that because I am on my second (or third or fourth!) baby that I don’t need help because I “know what I’m is doing.” I need more help! (thanks Renee Kohley!)

8. Speaking Of My Older Kids . . . Please take them to the park to blow bubbles or kick the soccer ball around. Please do not feed them junk – they turn in to gremlins, I promise! Here are some healthy snack ideas they’ll love!

9. Take Kitty For a Walk. Or if you really love me clean out Fido’s litterbox! (What, you DIDN’T name your dog after a cat and vice versa?!?!?)

10. Put A Sign On My Door . . . that says “Dear Friends and Family, Mom and baby need extra rest right now. Please come back in seven days, but phone first. All donations of casserole dinners would be most welcome. Thank you for caring about this family.” Gloria Lemay ²)

11. Express Your Inner Type A. If you’re the organizing type, help me harness “Is there anything I can do to help?” into real-life results. Create a list of chores to put on the fridge so that friends know what is needed. (thanks for this idea, Katy Scott!)

12. Invite Me To The Circle. Thinking about birth – mine, yours, or the totally different one down the street – is a great way to help me process my experience. Long conversations can be tiring, but I wouldn’t mind if you dropped by your copy of The Birth Next Door for me to read while I’m nursing in the wee hours.

13. Nourish the Nourisher. Set up a Care Calendar and email all my friends/family about it. If my family is on a restricted diet  – gluten, dairy, sugar, whatever – make sure that vital info gets listed. When you sign up make sure to bring me a nourishing meal like egg drop soup and a huge salad with homemade dressing. Here are 21 healthy ideas I’ll love you for!

14. Close The Gap. Yeah, there are 3 states between us and you’re totally off the hook, but how awesome would it be if you made the miles vanish into thin air with a visit from a cleaning service or box of organic, GMO-free dark chocolate drop-shipped from Amazon?

15. Send Me This Article.

16. Stop By After All The Hullabaloo Has Died Down. The first two weeks everyone is eager to help, but the adjustment period takes much longer.

17. Leave Immediately. I love you, I REALLY do, but welcoming visitors can be very tiring. So after you’ve done one of these amazing things for me, quietly slip out the door. Did I mention that I love you?

18. Make “Thank You” Taboo. Gifts are not necessary, but if you bring one make sure that it comes with a card that says “Don’t you dare write me a thank you note!

What did you find most helpful after having baby? What do you wish someone had done for you?

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68 Responses to 18 Ways To Help A New Mom

  1. Tarrin Fletcher via FB says:

    #7 was the worst one for me after my 2nd was born. Everyone assumed I had it handled, even family, even though my husband got ZERO days off because of extenuating circumstances. I was always overwhelmed. It was also my fault for not owning up to that and asking for more help.

  2. Tammy says:

    All of these ideas are great when helping a new mom. She will benefit from all of the support she can get from friends and family. Imagine what it would be like to be a new mother in a developing country? In the spirit of Mother’s Day wouldn’t it be nice to offer support to those in dire need? Gifts for new moms in developing countries can be purchased through the Christian Children’s Fund of Canada gift catalogue: http://bit.ly/ccfcanada-SpringGiftCatalogue-2014.

  3. Tammy says:

    Being a new mother is challenging enough, just imagine the challenges you would face as a new mother in a developing country?
    In the spirit of Mother’s Day wouldn’t it be nice to offer support to those in dire need? Gifts for new moms in developing countries can be purchased through the Christian Children’s Fund of Canada Gift Catalogue – http://bit.ly/ccfcanada-SpringGiftCatalogue-2014.

  4. Cindy C says:

    I love bringing meals, and if I can, I have started bringing the new mom a new pair of pajamas (dark colored cotton draw string pants, and a soft tee-shirt). Because after being pregnant, maternity doesn’t fit and non maternity doesn’t fit and you need something to wear all day and a half and it’s OK to bleed on.

  5. erin says:

    These are great, coming from becoming a first time mom myself, recently. Another one? Volunteer to take some pictures. Of the other kids and baby, candid moments (but not of the messes!) Or anything else mommy wants captured. I was surprised how many friends of mine were amerature photographers who had a hobby of doing this and were more than willing. I didn’t even need to hire a newborn photographer because one of my friends offered to do some shots for me. Its somthing you can leave them that will last a lifetime!

  6. Danalyn says:

    I like this article. It is so true. When I was on bed rest for 18 weeks one of my friends set us up on a meal website so my husband could focus on our 2 year old instead of cooking. I had another friend send me away for a day and she spring cleaned my home. A couple of other friends did your laundry. You know your friendship is at a whole new level when your friends are folding your families underwear! My mother in law, bless her, stayed for 2 1/2 weeks while the twins were in the NICU. She cleaned and organized all of the old baby clothes so I could find them when I needed. All of this made the transition from 1 child to 3 much easier. The babies are 5 months old now, and I still have people help with dishes or watching the babies so we can sleep. Almost all of your suggestions are things people did for us. It was amazing.

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