Welcome to the World of
by Lisa Dunning, MA, MFT
You have now joined the club of sleep
deprivation, constant worrying, conversations about poopy diapers and
experiencing fluctuating doubts and anxiety as to your ability to parent.
Becoming a new parent can be stressful and exhausting but it will also be the
most rewarding experience in your life. As a parent and a Parent / Child
Relationship Specialist, I have discovered 5 effective techniques to become an
effective, nurturing, loving and responsible parent of a newborn.
Learn to take care of
However exhausting being a spouse, a
parent and working inside and/or outside the home can be, if you do not take
care of you, then your other responsibilities will suffer. Taking a
10-minute bubble bath, or reading a book that you enjoy for 5 minutes or
taking a 10-minute nap will rejuvenate you so you are more able to take on
your other roles.
Trust in who you are as a
Being a parent seems to be open game for
criticism and scrutiny. You will notice that many other people in the
community will offer you advice and scrutinize the methods you are using.
Some advice will be good, some will not, and a lot of advice you hear will
conflict with each other and your opinions about parenting. Be open to new
ideas and advice, but in the end, remember that you are the parent. Trust
that you and your spouse will make the right decisions for your new family.
Make time for you and
Being a parent does not mean that you and
your spouse are no longer a couple. Parenting is the only relationship where
you are working toward separation. Remember, eventually your child will
become independent and move out. You do not want to reach that day and find
you are living with a stranger. Work on getting a babysitter you will trust
with your child so you and your spouse can enjoy much needed and deserved
time alone. If you and your spouse are happy, your baby will be too.
Allow your spouse to join
Sometimes new parents become possessive of
their role and feel that nobody can parent or change a diaper the way they
can. Even if that is true, your spouse needs to be able to bond with the
baby and feel confident that you will support their efforts and not scrutinize
them. Enjoy the time they spend together. Take advantage of this time by
using it to take a little break from the demands of baby care.
Enjoy your new family:
The most important aspect of being a new
parent is to enjoy it. You will notice that weeks turn into months and
months turn into years and before you know it your baby is no longer a baby.
Cherish each moment and enjoy your new role and family!
Any of these articles by
Lisa Dunning, Family Therapist may be re-published in hardcopy
(magazines, newsletters or newspapers) or electronic format in websites,
ezines or electronic newsletters provided the following resource box is included at the end of the article with a
link to the URL
|Lisa Dunning is a
Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist Specializing in
Parent/Child Relationship issues, the author of "Good
Parents Bad Parenting: How To Parent Together When Your
Parenting Styles Are Worlds Apart" and the host of her own
radio show, "Life Support". She provides marriage, divorce and parenting
sessions to clientele across the United States and Canada and provides expert
parenting advice to newspaper & magazine columnists. To learn
more about Lisa Dunning visit her website at http://www.LisaDunningMFT.com.