Tips for Maintaining Your Social Life: New Mom 101
byStacy ZeigerApr 01, 2014
Just because you have a new baby doesn't mean you have to throw your social life out the window. In fact, spending time with friends could help you from becoming overwhelmed by your new role as a mom. You might not find yourself hanging out with friends until midnight or even hanging out with the same friends, but you can still remain social after baby arrives.
"The key to surviving the postpartum period," says Lauren Napolitano, a licensed psychologist on staff at Bryn Mawr Hospital in Pennsylvania, "is to reach out for support of all kinds -- new friends, moms who understand the exhaustion of having a newborn. Napolitano recommends seeking help with housecleaning and landscaping, and asking your mother to freeze a lasagna for you. Most people around you are willing to help, so don't hesitate to ask. You also don't want to forget to connect with friends and family members to catch up on the latest news in their lives. Sometimes just talking about someone else's life will be a helpful break from the stress of being a new mom.
Schedule a Play Date
Your baby may not do much more than sleep and eat, but that doesn't mean you can't have a play date. Invite over a friend who has a baby and put your babies down on a blanket together while you enjoy some adult conversation. Take some lunch to another friend with a new baby. Don't limit yourself to the indoors either. While new babies shouldn't get too much sun, you can head to the park and lay out on a blanket with a couple of friends. Maybe you'll want to put that shiny new stroller to good use and shed a bit of that baby weight by meeting up with other moms for a walk or a jog.
Invite Friends In
Getting out with your new baby may prove challenging, so instead of meeting your childless friends out in public, invite them in. Watch a movie together, talk over coffee, or share a simple lunch. In the evening, invite a favorite couple over for dinner or throw a small potluck so you can still get together with your favorite friends without having to do a lot of preparation.
Enjoy a Night Out
New moms can catch a lot of flack for not spending every waking moment with their new babies, but the truth is that it's OK to get away for a few hours. If you're not ready to leave your baby alone, get your significant other to pull baby duty for a few hours while you head out with friends for a spa day, a fun dinner, or anything else that will help you relax. Don't neglect your significant other either. "Go see a movie or just have dinner," says Napolitano. "It's good to reconnect as adults -- not just as parents."
Having a baby opens up the door to new friendships with other moms. "Think enrolling a 4-month-old baby in 'mini music' is silly? Think again! You will meet so many new moms who are looking to meet friends," says Napolitano. A survey by Nature's Purest showed that new moms actually make an average of nine new friends in the first year after their babies are born. So get out there, meet new moms, find a network of support and enjoy stumbling through this new phase of life together.
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