come december I am about to add another small person to our large and busy household. (baby number four)
I suffered nasty pnd after the last one and am beyond terrified it will come back this time. this time I have already said to midwives/HV/dr/family I may need extra support, (whereas last time i hid it from most people until i totally fell apart ) I'm thinking what i will really need help with, is basic day to day stuff, housework, errands, childminding while i sleep(!) etc, to keep on top of things which helps not only practically but mentally too. I'm sure my family mean well but they wont be much use in that department.....so who could i ask/find/hire? i know i want some sort of help, but not sure how to go about getting it... dh keeps reminding me we are not millionaires and cannot hire a super nanny, so any ideas that cost less than a 'super nanny' would be helpful. thanks ladies.
There's something called Homestart, see here. Homestart volunteers come to your house & help you get on with things. Also, a lot of colleges have placements schemes where you basically get a free au pair. You would need to ring your nearest further education college to see if they run such a scheme. Both are free help.
Neither Homestart or the placement person can babysit while you go out, but they can play with the baby/kids while you do housework, make tea, go for a shower, that kind of thing.
What about a doula? I don't know how much they cost, but I think they might do discounts if you have low income. If you google doula, you'll find a website with info about how it works. (or someone else might have a link -sorry, must do some work or I'd look for you.)
How about going to an agency and having a nanny for half the week? You could have help for the mornings or afternoons (whichever you find the hardest bit of the day). Alternatively you could advertise locally for an old fashioned mother's help. My family is 500 miles away, my in laws are elderly (and drunk...), and we live in a small village. I tried to struggle on myself (dh sometimes works very long hours) and I think my pnd was as a result of trying to manage on my own with a new baby. We found a fab nanny who comes every morning and it made all the difference to us. She's also not that expensive considering that she does the most important job in the world - looking after ds! Ds is 8 months and I am pg again and I'm not sure how I would have manged without her. I understand what you say about the money side of things but the sacrifices I have had to make to have her around have been well worth it. Having suffered from pnd I totally understand where you are coming from and would say that a mum's health and mental well being is well worth the expense. Even if you just had help for the first 6 months it would make all the difference in the world.
You could hire an o pair(sp?), a maternity nurse(pretty costly-about £500 a week) or as previous poster said a homestart volunteer if there is one in your area-where are you from?
Anougher option is to contact your local college, some colleges that teach early years education like to place students with people who have toddlers and a new baby.
hello dqueen wher are you based? i have just posted a thread doulas at discount prices.
i am training as a doula and i can offer you support if you are in the london area see the thread for details.
i too had pnd after my ds it can be tough if you need to have a moan please cat me or if i can help in any way