New Mums are told to expect happiness, love and even tiredness but they are rarely prepared for loneliness during motherhood.
New Mums who are at home with their tiny babies all day might find that they have been talking to someone, albeit this little baby whom they love, who does not talk back to them. This can mean that a new Mum may go a whole day without having a proper conversation or anyone asking her about herself.
New Mums I work with speak about how they use social media as a support and a way to contact other Mothers. But often find they feel worse as they perceive that everyone else is doing so much better than them. Your baby could be crying all day, you could be crying all day but in that 5 second window that the baby smiles and you get a photo that you share to try participate in this world of “perfect parenthood”, but it’s not real.
New Mothers need support.
Primarily the support of their partner who has such an important role to play. Your partner can support you to be as available as you must be to the new baby. The role of friends and extended family is another to be celebrated and utilised. If you know someone who has recently had a baby, check in with them and see how they are. Call over and bring food with you. While you are there offer to hold the baby (crying or otherwise). Let her do something she would like to do for herself for 30 minutes (a shower is a welcome break). Consider doing a load of washing while you are there.
These small acts of nurture-based care really help new Mothers. Practical, considered, helpful visits will mean a lot in those early weeks and even months.