As a new mother, you have to get used to a lot. The problem with that is that you have to get used to all of it pretty much from the first day onwards. As any reasonable person is going to tell you, figuring everything out as a new mother is impossible. You’re not going to do it on the first day. Chances are, even after you’ve gained valuable insight on parenting, you’re still going to feel as though you’re struggling to keep up with everything.
A little advice can go a long way. The only problem with this notion is that the advice new mothers tend to receive is an infuriatingly mixed bag. There is good advice, bad advice, and even advice that just flat-out doesn’t make sense.
In the end, as you consider any piece of advice for new mothers that comes your way, the first thing you should do is consider the source. Advice from people who have been there can be helpful. Advice from people who don’t even own a houseplant, let alone have to care for another human being? Not so much.
A Few Tips For New Mothers
Here are a few suggestions that almost any new mother can take advantage of:
- You don’t have to “love every minute”: Has anyone told you yet that when it comes to motherhood, you should “love every minute”? Don’t you want to throw a dirty diaper at people like that? The truth of the matter is that you won’t love every moment. Nor should you feel guilty about that. Moments of intense frustration or even depression during motherhood, especially if it’s your first time around, are going to come fast and furious at times. Acknowledging that you are entitled to these moments is a good way to deal with them.
- Does anyone really know what they’re doing? Parents have good days and bad days. One day, you’re going to feel like you can do no wrong. The next day, you might feel like the worst parent in history. Honestly, although we can learn and build plans around what we’ve learned, the reality is that no one really knows what they are doing. Some know more than others, but even the so-called “best” parents make mistakes.
- Work? Don’t work? Most of us live in households that rely on incomes from more than one person. However, at the end of the day, no one has the right to judge you for going to work, or choosing to stay home to be with your child full-time. No one. You do what works best for yourself and your family. Everyone else can take their opinions elsewhere.
- Everyone is different: Certain elements to the experience of first-time childbirth/rearing can move from one new mommy to the next. At the same time, it is important to understand that millions of tiny components to your experience can create something that will strike another new mommy as completely foreign. If your experience is different, and it will be, this doesn’t mean your experience is less than anyone else’s.
- Going it alone: Caring for a child can sometimes involve asking others for help. If you have such people in your life, remember that you are not weak for reaching out to these individuals. You are not a bad parent.
- Postpartum depression is real: you are not alone, and you are not a bad person. Do not let the situation get the better of you, it can lead to worse problems, and never turn to controlled substances, that will only lead to major health issues and possible exposure to the criminal justice system
What Advice Would You Give?
If you want to give a new mother advice, consider whether or not the advice is desired in the first place. In the second place, do you actually have experience as a parent? If you answered no to both, then strongly reconsider giving out tips like “Enjoy every moment” or “Don’t feel guilty.”