When a mother gives birth to a new baby, she typically experiences a whirlwind of emotions. She’s excited because the baby has arrived. However, her hormones are out of whack. That’s why it’s so important to take note of any potential signs of postpartum depression. If you have a friend who is going through postpartum depression, consider some of the ways you can help.
1. Create a Community
It’s so essential to create a community. Even if the community that surrounds your friend involves you and two other trusted friends, now is the time to come together to show up for your friend. Keep each other in the loop of anything alarming or concerning. While you don’t want to jump to conclusions, it’s always better to be safe rather than sorry.
2. Be a Listening Ear
When you get the opportunity to talk to your friend, try your best to do more listening rather than talking. Give her space to freely discuss her emotions. When you focus on being a safe sounding board, you can make a world of a difference for her.
You may not need to come up with solutions. Your friend may just want to be able to air their grievances and their new hardships with someone who won’t judge them as a mother or spouse. Validation is something that we all crave. Giving them validation to their problems can help them feel like they can get through it and come out the other side stronger.
If they complain about the lack of sleep or difficulty you shouldn’t minimize their experiences by contrasting the great things. They know the great things about having a baby. That’s why they have a baby. You should instead say something like “I’m so sorry, that sounds very rough to only get two hours of sleep at a time.”
3. Send Food
When mothers are making sure the baby eats, sleeps and remains alive, it’s easy for her to neglect herself. At the very least, try to make sure she’s eating. One of the best ways you can do this is by ordering Doordash from a 24 hour diner. In addition to making her favorite dish, send a few favorite fast-food orders with the service. This way she won’t have to worry about feeding the older kids or herself. This kind of gesture is surely meant to be appreciated.
If they have a large freezer you can make or take frozen dinners like lasagna. This will
4. Offer to Babysit
When a new mom is in the trenches, her looks tend to suffer. When a woman looks good, it’s a way to help her feel a little bit better. Send her to the hairdresser, while you babysit the baby. Gather a group of friends that can offer to swap turns watching the baby once a week, so that the new mom can get some self-care time in.
5. Recommend a Therapist
If your friend is suffering from postpartum depression, let her know that it’s perfectly normal to see a therapist. A mental health professional is fully equipped to help new moms get through this type of struggle. Even if it’s just one or two sessions, encourage your friend to seek professional help.
It’s still important for you to live your life. Don’t feel bad about that. However, it is very helpful to be mindful of ways you can show up the friend in your life. Postpartum depression can be extremely serious if it’s not properly cared for. With these acts, you can help to keep your friend alive.
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