Finding Your Footing in Early Parenthood
June 20, 2023

Finding Your Footing in Early Parenthood

Deb Porter, Owner of HOLD Hearing Out Life Drama, helps individuals improve their communication by teaching active listening skills resulting in positive outcomes. Deb also provides a safe, non-judgmental space so that those who use HOLD’s confidential listening service gain clarity and find relief from overwhelming situations.

When Reality Doesn’t Match Expectations:

You’ve dreamed of it for months now, and suddenly your baby is in your arms. You expected coos, and a peacefully sleeping baby nestled close. Instead, you are experiencing being peed on, frequent crying, vomit all over, and deeper exhaustion than you have ever experienced before. You really want someone to understand what you’re feeling, only everyone is so busy fussing over the baby, they don’t seem to hear you. Questions begin to spin, “How can I take care of this human when I can’t even eat or shower myself?”

It’s normal to question yourself, and your capabilities. There’s nothing wrong with that. It’s a sign of how much you care about this little person, and how much you want to do right by them. By caring, you can know that you will get through the doubts and dilemmas. While in the moment, the challenges may seem daunting, even impossible, the essentials will get done. You will get through this.

Challenges of Parenthood:

As the joy of holding your baby in your arms becomes a reality, you might find yourself facing unexpected challenges. When you’re faced with bone-deep exhaustion, the basic needs can seem monumental. In these overwhelming moments, it’s crucial to remember that meeting your own needs directly impacts your ability to care for your child effectively.

When you are sleep-deprived, physically drained, and emotionally depleted, it becomes increasingly difficult to provide the love, attention, and care your baby requires. That exhaustion makes it difficult to think clearly, make wise decisions. It can impact your mood, leaving you more susceptible to irritability, frustration, and even postpartum depression. Being aware of this can help you deal with it better.

Prioritizing Your Well-Being:

As a new parent, it’s easy to neglect your own needs while tending to the demands of your baby. The baby’s needs are important, and so are yours.

Nurturing your physical and emotional well-being is needed for both you and your baby. While it may seem difficult to carve out time for yourself, neglecting your own needs can lead to burnout and hinder your ability to nurture your child. Caring for yourself is a first step to caring for your baby.

Nutrition, hydration, and rest are vital for your body’s healing and rejuvenation. While the age-old advice of “sleep when the baby sleeps” sounds reasonable, it may not always be feasible, especially if you have other children or responsibilities to tend to.

Amidst the chaos of parenting, it’s essential to listen to yourself and identify your own needs. Take a moment to ask yourself, “What do I need right now?” If it’s something you can manage independently, go ahead and prioritize it. However, there will be times when you require assistance or struggle to determine your needs. During these moments, it’s important to communicate your needs to a trusted adult who can offer support. Even if that support is helping you sort out your own needs.

A Simple Way to Encourage Effective Support:

In our culture, we’re often conditioned to put others before ourselves. Asking becomes difficult when this is your mindset. However, becoming a new parent is a time when it’s necessary to break free from these societal expectations and express your needs openly.

When seeking assistance, it’s important to communicate your needs as clearly as possible, allowing others to understand and provide the help you require. By offering specific instructions or requests, such as requesting a particular food item or drink, you enable those around you to contribute effectively. This not only facilitates the support you need but also encourages others to continue offering their help.

The Relief of Being Heard:

There may be times when your physical needs are taken care of, which finally allows your emotional needs to surface. This is when you need someone to listen. Most people do not have training in active listening. They may do their best, and that might be enough. If so, we’re really happy for you!

Many people are prone to offering advice or attempting to fix problems rather than simply providing a listening ear. However, the gift of being fully heard, without judgment or unsolicited advice, can provide immense relief and support.

What a gift when someone lets you be fully heard, and allows the feelings–no matter how ambivalent they are– to simply be.

The Power of Holding Space:

Becoming a parent is an incredible journey, but it also comes with its fair share of challenges. From sleepless nights to overwhelming exhaustion, new parents often find themselves yearning for someone who truly understands their experiences. While family and friends may offer advice or assistance, it’s the power of active listening that can truly provide the relief and support needed during this transformative phase of life.

Deb often says, if there was one thing she could teach everyone in the world, it would be this: When someone has just vented, and then says, “I don’t know what to do” – don’t assume this is a sign you need to step in and fix it. Instead, ask, “Are you looking for solutions, or did you need someone to simply hear you and hold that with you?” It makes a huge difference.

If You Need a Listening Ear:

HOLD provides a safe and non-judgmental space where individuals can find relief and clarity in overwhelming situations. Their confidential listening service offers solace to new parents, helping them navigate the challenges of parenthood and allowing them to express themselves without fear of judgment. Additionally, HOLD’s self-paced mini-course, Create a Peaceful Home, offers practical guidance for individuals seeking to enhance their communication skills and cultivate a harmonious environment. Whether you choose to explore HOLD’s confidential listening service or enroll in their self-paced mini-course, Deb Porter and her team are dedicated to providing the support you need.

Becoming a parent is a remarkable and transformative experience, but it can also be overwhelming. Prioritizing your own well-being and seeking support when needed are essential steps towards creating a peaceful and fulfilling parenting journey. Take the leap and reach out to HOLD Hearing Out Life Drama today. Commit to your journey towards effective communication and emotional well-being.

When you’re overwhelmed and the people you know are too close to the problem or worse, ARE the problem, we listen so you can think clearly and feel a sense of relief.
HOLD Hearing Out Life Drama