How To Help A New Mom

A little over a week ago, one of my dearest friends had her very first baby! It has been such a wonderful blessing to be there through her pregnancy and to be in the room when her daughter was born.


I remember back when I was a first time mom, and how completely freaked out and overwhelmed I was. I also didn’t have any of my own family living around so I relied solely on the help of my husband, my friend and her husband for any support.

There are a lot of things that a new mom has to deal with, and when we know someone who just had a baby all we want to do is help right? Unfortunately… sometimes there are certain things that are helpful and certain things that just add to what is already an overwhelming time for these new parents.

In my experience, there are certain things that are really helpful to new moms and things that they really need, even if they don’t ask for them.helping a new mom

How to Help a New Mom

  • Bring Meals: I cannot tell you how much of a lifesaver it was when I didn’t have to cook after our twins were born. It was amazing! I didn’t have to cook for about two weeks, plus I had my wonderful mom in town looking after us as well and she cooked every night she was here. You don’t want the new parents to have to eat out overnight because they don’t have the energy to cook, and if you are a mom you KNOW how much energy you need for breastfeeding, no sleep, etc…
  • Clean: Everything and anything. Whatever needs to get cleaned so that the new mom doesn’t have to deal with it, do it. Some new moms, like myself, have a control freak personality and still want to do everything on their own. So, just do little things here and there instead of taking control of their house. You don’t want to upset an already emotional new mama:)
  • Give them a break: Ask the new mama if they want you to come over while they shower, take a nap, sit for a minute alone… whatever it may be. If they don’t want it, do notΒ push the issue. But leave the option open for them so that if they do want, they have the ability to take you up on your offer.
  • Don’t go against their wishes: If they don’t like others holding their baby, if they do or don’t want visitors at home/the hospital, if they want things done a certain way when it comes to their new baby, respect those wishes. You have to remember that this is their baby.
  • Do not get offended: Don’t be offended if they don’t want you at the hospital. Don’t be offended if they turn down your offer to visit. Don’t be offended if they accidentally snap at you for “holding the baby wrong”. Give these exhausted mamas some grace and know that it isn’t necessarily just you.

New moms are going through a lot. They are trying to navigate being a parent to a newborn, dealing with a whirlwind of emotions, trying to heal from whatever kind of labor and delivery they had, and trying to get back to their other “life duties” on top of all. You want to do everything you can to take even the smallest bit weight off of their shoulders.

*Cheers to the new mamas that we know and love*

joanna at motherhood and merlot

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  1. Great advice! When I was a new mom and had major issues breastfeeding I had so many people think they could “fix” it and made unsettling comments to me. With PP hormones raging, it was the worst!! So don’t make a new mom feel bad about any of her choices. She is doing her best!! Xo

  2. For the most part people did this for me, but I did get tired of people showing up unannounced to see the baby. I felt gross and unkempt (which I was) for several weeks after baby and while I shouldn’t have cared about that, there were times when people would just show up! Thanks for sharing!
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  3. This is a great list! I have always found a meal to be a wonderful gift to a new family. I would also suggest that it be given in a disposable dish so the new parents didn’t have to worry about dishes either. I also really love that you emphasized the fact that new parents are in fact the parents to the child and ultimately get to make the decisions for the baby and people should not get offended by that. I think that often gets overlooked by overzealous “helpers” and feelings get hurt. Awesome post!
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  4. Omg great list!!! Food is definitely a good one! When my daughter was first born & when my hubby went back to work… I would seriously forget to eat ALL THE TIME. And I’m a food obsessed foodie! Just being overwhelmed with a new baby you forget to do the simplest of things.

  5. Great list! I have a five week old and was and continue to be absolutely disappointed in how things have gone since we’ve been home. No one, not even my husband, has helped clean our house no matter how much I have mentioned it. All I keep getting told was to let the housework go instead. My mom brought some food over, but my husband and I ended up cooking the majority of it while she held the baby. No one else brought us food until my sister came home for Thanksgiving. No one from my women’s group has come to visit. In fact, hardly anyone has come to visit or called to see how we’re doing. It’s really sad how alone you quickly become after giving birth. I agree with your list. I’d also add that coming over to just hold the baby while the new mom does everything around the house instead of vice versa is just wrong unless she wants it that way. And for goodness sake, please don’t dare take a nap while the baby is napping while the new mom is trying to get stuff done. Offer to help our just start helping. Visitors napping instead of letting the new mom nap is just plain wrong, especially since everyone under the sun tells the new mom to nap when the baby is napping (impossible, by the way). And yes, this happened twice at my house! Also, don’t ask the new mom to come to your house for you to see the baby. If you want to see the baby, get in your own vehicle and make the drive to see the baby at their house! And no excuses about not having a good reason to come to the area where the new parents live that would warrant a visit. Seeing a new baby is enough of a reason to visit in the first place. I hope for all other new moms out there that you have an actual support system in place and that your significant other actually puts you first before everything else once the baby arrives!

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