First Time Parents Listen Up

Today’s Prompt: Advice for first time parents.

Your Aunt M and Uncle M are about to have a baby girl, currently called “Lady G.” As a gift to them I am taking my post and my fellow bloggers posts on this topic and making a book for Aunt M for her shower.

My advice is practical and is one I hope to give both your one day when you make me a Grandma.

Before baby arrives

  • Go to the movies
  • Go out to dinner
  • Sleep SUPER late at least one day before baby arrives (you will remember that day for at least 4 years but I suspect much longer)
  • Start before the baby is born to think about how what you are doing now will be different when baby arrives. The point of this is not to be a depressing excercise but rather one that makes you excited and less surprised when she does come

At the hospital

  • Let the baby sleep in the nursery. Do not be a hero you have weeks (a lifetime) to bond, you must rest for thousands of VERY important reasons. They will bring the baby in to you when she needs to be fed you will miss out on nothing. I promise.
  • You will freak out before you bring the baby home (both Mom and Dad). At some point you will realized you have a baby to take care of for the rest of their life (or at least till the teenage years when they let you take care of them). Billions upon billions of baby’s have been born and raised without modern day gadgets and have been fine. You are smart enough to handle this and you have a whole family around that will do anything and everything you want them to do. You can and will be able to do this
  • Everyone will see you naked or somewhat compromised (not you Dad… lucky duck!)
  • You only need a car seat and an outfit to get the baby home… really.

At home

  • Ask people to go grocery shopping for you
  • Ask people to make dinner (or take them up on their offers)
  • Sleep as much as you can. There is absolutely no way you will sleep every time the baby sleeps as much as that is sound advice it will NOT happen so do not be disappointed.
  • Tell people when you want them to come over. You do not want people stopping by, be specific “Come by at 11 am she will have eaten but will be awake. She will only be up for an hour though and then I will have to feed her again. We are not that good at feeding so it takes a while so we cannot visit long”
  • People want to see you…opps I meant the baby… badly. This is the beginning of being “Lady G’s Mom”


  • Try it for at least 3 weeks by then it gets much easier
  • The benefits of doing it even for 3 days are amazing give it a try
  • Get a lactation consultant. The most expensive one I have ever heard of is $300 for a session it included a lot of one on one attention. You will spend that much in less than 3 weeks of formula so you owe it to both yourselves to do it.
  • Give up with you feel you just cannot do it, if you can make till you go back to work great, even better till she gets to eating solid food after that you have it down pat so just do it till you do not want to
  • At weeks 6 or 7, if you had any antibiotics at birth see your doctor and get checked for thrush it comes fast a furious and hurts. Within hours of taking your first dose of medicine you will be fine. Most American women have antibiotics at birth and most American mothers quit nursing at about 7 weeks (I forget where I read this but I know that the general point is true and I personally had thrush at 7 weeks with both kids).
  • the responsibility falls squarely on you and it stinks but the ability to calm and soothe a baby who nurses is something no bottle feed baby Mom has.

Advice from others

  • Ask for it when you want it
  • Listen to what you want to
  • Do what you want
  • Other Mom’s your age tend to have the best advice what was good when your Mom/mother-in-law/grandma had kids may not be the best advice now.


  • Setting routines helps young children understand boundaries and rules
  • Decide how you two want to raise the kids and talk about certain topics as they come up. It is important that you know where you fall and kind of hard line you will draw on certain topics.


  • Follow the American Academy of Pediatrics advice, put the baby on her back to sleep, do not co-sleep, no blankets till over 1 year old and do not make the room to hot (68-71 degrees)
  • Set up a routine that works for you and stick to it every night you will be so thankful for it.

Click the summer blog challenge button on the right to read other bloggers posts. 



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5 responses to “First Time Parents Listen Up

  1. I agree with your comment about moms your own age – it occurred to me that although some things were great to hear about babies in my family from previous generations, etc. – parenting ‘now’ is different than parenting ‘then’, and it’s good to get advice from people in the same ‘boat’ as it were 🙂

  2. abqmurphy

    Well, you probably don’t want to hear from me, but parenting does not change all that much from generation to generation. There are some things that just don’t change, for example, human milk is best for human babies. I did a lot of things with my babies that many of the young moms today are doing with their babies. So please don’t give us older moms the boot.

    • I certainly do not want to sound like Mom’s and Grandma’s do not have good advice! They do but there are many things that around (both research and gadgets) that make the typical problems parents faced for hundreds of years easier/different to solve.

  3. Ann

    That is a well-thought out list filled with helpful advice! I think preparing for the arrival of a baby – either through birth or adoption – is critical. I tried to do as much as I could in terms of wrapping up loose ends, doing projects that I wanted to do, etc. before my first daughter was adopted. That was very helpful for me in terms of not having lots of other distractions; and feeling more calm and focused when caring for her.

  4. Big lists! I did things very differently than on your list with both of my children! As much as I needed the sleep, I slept better having them with me the entire time than I could have at the hospital if they were out of the room. And we bedshare, now with both kids and we love it! That’s the fun of being a parent,… your list says, do what you want 🙂 Thanks for sharing! you can read my post here

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