There are many things we can say to a new mother, but most are down right annoying, not necessary, unsolicited, or quite often bonkers.
We are led down a garden path of nonsense which makes us wonder will we ever get this parenting gig right? We bubble with poor self-confidence, and self-doubt creeps in because all anyone can do is talk about what we need to do with the baby.
Let’s take a pause here for a second and remember that our new mum friends may not want to talk about the chores, the chaos, and how we just have to, have to, make time for self-care.
Maybe new motherhood has them spiralling in a flurry of unexpected emotions, cascading with sleepless nights, and feeling so very unlike themselves. Maybe they look in the mirror and miss the person they used to be.
And then you rock up at their door, casserole in one hand and a bottle of Nosecco in the other. You may goo goo ga ga over the baby, while she gratefully pops the casserole in the fridge and takes down two glasses hoping that the conversation won’t swerve towards "Is he a good baby?", "Whats it like having a mini-you?" or "Is he sleeping at night yet?"
While the baby coo’s at you, remember that the woman sitting opposite you, sipping the gentle bubbles, may be lamenting the life she once had. How does the conversation go with a person who is in a state of flux? How do you fill in the gaps? So, what do new moms really need to hear?
They need to hear what’s normal. How Jake is being his usual self at work and stealing paperclips; that Hannah ran her first 5k and wears the medal to buy frozen veg; that a three-day migraine knocked you for six; and that you will be there to talk, rant, give out without repercussion or judgement because we know new motherhood is hard.
We know a new mum doesn’t need advice about how to feed the baby, how to lose the baby weight, or what old wives' tale might possibly work for colic. Our friends in new motherhood are still our friends. She is still the same person who made you laugh so hard ketchup came out of your nose.