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New parents(7 Posts)
I have a young neighbours with a new baby and want to be able to help without interfering.
They neither of them have family within reach: either miles away or abroad.
We have befriended them since they moved in without getting very close: they are almost young enough to be our grandchildren and they seem to be quite shy.
They asked us round to see the baby as soon as he was back from hospital and ran to us when he projectile vomited because they were frightened, so it seems they trust us.
My "problem" is that they are apparently very isolated with no close friends and have told me to visit whenever I want to. This is lovely of them but I don't want to go too often, nor to leave it too long between visits, or to stay too long. Neither do I want them to become too dependent on us because we are likely to move in the next year or so.
The father will be going back to work in a week and mum will be on maternity leave for a year so she will be very alone and I am a little concerned that she will find this very hard.
I have suggested that comes to mumsnet for help and advice (and company sometimes) but she seems a little wary.
So mumsnetters; what do you advise I do to help her/them at this early stage in their parenthood to make it as easy and pleasant as possible for them?
P.S. the baby is now 10 days old and they seem terrified to take him outdoors "in case he gets cold". How do I convince them that he is tougher than this? By the way, he is a beautiful little boy and, so far, seems a very easy baby
Is their health visitor no help? I would have thought that she would be the ideal person to tell them about new parent groups in the area. Or get her involved with the NCT? Ours organise weekly coffee mornings, that could give her a great opportunity to get out and about. But it is bewildering to be a first time parent. Probably not helped by people randomly interfering (not you btw). I got out and about with both of mine within days, and some of the remarks I got from old ladies in particular would have made me feel rotten if I had a less thick skin. They seemed to think a baby should be kept indoors for weeks on end. They're very lucky to have a neighbour like you
i am also a new parent with out any friends where i live. what i found very useful is someone coming over and bringing something to eat and helping with house work.
about the going out how about offering to go with her for a short walk as moral support i dont know if this helps.
i hope so
I don't really have any advice to offer, but I'd like to wish you luck and let you know that I think you're doing a lovely thing
DS is now 16 weeks and we have just been going to groups with other mum's for about a month. Our health visitors organised baby massage classes and a weaning class, and there's a baby group at the local community centre. PEEP classes are starting in a couple of weeks too. It might be worth having a look to see if there are any leaflets or posters in your local health/community centre about groups that the mum could go to.
Once we started going to one we ended up adding eachother to facebook and I found out about the other groups from there.
I would definitely go around on the first day her husband is back at work - perhaps offer to take her lunch? That first day back is so daunting!
Then another day perhaps go out for a walk with her - is there a local surestart or community centre? They might have advertisements for baby groups etc that you could encourage her to join.
I did suggest that the HV would be a good person for them to go to for advice as I had my babies in the sixties and so much seems to have changed in the interim, but they seemed a bit doubtful. Having just read the thread on bad advice from HVs I'm not sure I blame them.
chester21 I'm not sure that I can help much with food as they are muslim and halal and the DH has already given us delicious samosas, that he had made himself. I had already wondered about offering to go for a walk with her and baby after her DH has gone back to work and she is on her own but don't want to step on toes whilst he is still at home.
The other (important) thing I should have mentioned is that I am a smoker (no lectures please, already get enough from family) and so am aware that inviting her and baby here or handling baby could be something she would not like- smokey air/clothes, so how far can I go with helping?
I would suggest her to go to surestart centre if you have one near, because they can be great and will help her find other mums in the area with babies similar ages and also the workers can be more helpful than hv i think, as not always easy to get hv apt etc but surestart you can just drop in easily
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