You are all your baby really needs, adjusting to life with a new baby

Having a baby? Three things that are good to know, and the ONLY thing you really need to know.

Working as an Obstetric Social Worker in a busy maternity unit, I am often told by new parents that “nothing could have prepared them for what it is REALLY like to become a parent”. 

 Often they tell me they really couldn’t have pictured the huge mix of emotions, the challenge of feeding a newborn, and the healing that takes place in the first weeks. 

When we start to talk about the process of adjustment that is taking place for them and their baby, they will often tell me that they already feel completely overwhelmed by the information overload. So much advice out there, so many opinions and how to know what to listen to. 

I often reflect on what we should be telling parents to be. What parents really need to know. So I have aimed to keep this piece really simple. 

1. Your baby will take time to adjust

 For the first 12 weeks your baby...

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All is not lost; the upside to siblings meeting for the first time at home.

If you are expecting another baby, I’m sure you would have imagined introducing your newborn to your other children in the hospital. Perhaps you thought of your toddler cuddling your newborn in your hospital bed with dad operating the camera, ready to capture the perfect moment for eternity, or anticipated them peeping into the clear hospital bassinet with a big grin.

Current visitor restrictions in many hospitals in Sydney right now impact the way older siblings meet a new baby for the first time. So many parents I work with can be really sad and worried about this, and this grief is valid.  However, there are some benefits to making this introduction at home.

I certainly anticipated the perfect introduction of a new sibling when I had each of my four boys, but the reality was not nearly as idyllic.

Despite my high hopes, this is what really happened. While I lay with my new baby in the ward, I could hear my toddlers the minute they got out of the...

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