Don’t be lonely: the right friends and loved-ones around you you can lighten the load of the first year of parenthood
Words Tamara Bugembe
There are plenty of helpful lists about what to buy for your newborn baby, but preparing for parenthood also requires you the right squad.
The saying “it takes a village to raise a child” is very much rooted in reality, having people to help you is necessary for your own sanity and survival. But don’t leave your village up to chance: with the right friends around you and your first year of parenthood will be a lot easier than it could be.
Here are the five squad members every new mum should have in their village.
We all have a friend who, like Monica from Friends, loves to clean. Throw whatever worries you may have about being judged out the window. Friends who are absolutely itching to clean know intricate details about the ingredients of cleaning products and can help you pick out non-toxic, baby-safe products for your home – and nothing makes them happier than seeing a pigsty transformed into a palace. And nothing makes you happier than seeing a friend who loves cleaning let loose on your house.
The bargain shopper
Raising a child costs in excess of £10,000 a year. So, having that friend who knows how to get £25 worth of nappies for £12.50 is always handy. This friend loves shopping, so you can guarantee that she will be at every sale looking for a bargain for herself. So instead of having to leave the house, ask her to let you know when she’s next out shopping so you can text her a list of some bargains she can grab for you.
The experienced mum
This is the hardest friend to recruit correctly, but the true experienced mum is honest about parenting, has a bag full of practical tips and vetted sitters, and can help you find the laughter in life with a new-born.
You should also trust her enough to leave the baby with her while you catch up on sleep, drink a hot cup of tea, or maybe even sneak a date night with your other half.
The Office Gossip
Every now and then you may have some flashback of the life you had before your baby and wonder what happened between Jill from admin and Andy from payroll. This is the friend that keeps you updated on all office happenings, while making you appreciate that you are far away from the politics of it all.
The photoshop wizard
While the tedium of nappies and feeds may seem endless at the time, in fact time with your baby flies by and before long they’ll be a grunting teenager. Having that friend who captures your family dynamic in perfect photos while artistically cropping out the clutter on your kitchen counter, is the kind of friend you want to be inviting to everything.
Dr Tamara Bugembe is a qualified doctor and founder of helperbees.co.uk which provides support to new mothers.
Read more features at absolutely-mama.co.uk