New baby? Expect these life changes

Many new changes come with a new baby. Our advice from an expert will help you adapt to your new role as parents.

When you have a baby, life as you know it changes forever! While some changes may feel overwhelming, the joy your baby will bring you far outways the small sacrifices you may have to make in your new role as a parent. Eventually, you will adapt to these changes and it may be hard to remember what life was like before your baby was born. Obstetrician and gynaecologist Dr Laura E Stachel gives the following advice on behalf of Fisher-Price on what parents should expect from their new role.

Your social life will change

It can be hard to maintain an active social life as your infant grows. A date may become a night at home, ordering takeaways and watching a movie. If most of your friends are childless, you may find your interests drifting in different directions. While your friends discuss current events and good books, you may be more focused on baby supplies and developmental milestones. You may begin to make friends with other parents and plan child-friendly outings. And time as a couple will be interrupted by your child’s needs.

Your bank balance will change

You need to provide food, clothing, nappies, and 24-hour care for your child, which requires appropriate budgeting. If you both work, you need to find reliable daycare and have back-up plans for when your child is ill.

Your sleep patterns will change

You have to attend to your child’s daily needs for food, cleanliness, rest, and stimulation. Your days and nights are tuned to your baby’s biorhythms. You’re learning to function on less sleep than you have ever thought possible, which takes a physical and emotional toll. If you breastfeed, your body is physically responsible for your baby’s nutrition, which places further energy demands on you.

You’ll have emotional ups and downs

Although the demands of parenting can be overwhelming, you may feel an immense connection to the little being you’ve created, and experience a depth of love you have never known before. You may also feel a new kind of love for each other as partners. Your baby can force you to slow down in life and appreciate each moment. As your child gains awareness of the world around him, you may begin to share his fascination with the shapes, colours, textures, and sounds around you, and find satisfaction in watching your child develop.

You’ll learn how to juggle life and parenting

Nothing may seem easy again. Shopping for food, doing the laundry, going to work, taking a shower and resting all needs to happen while caring for your baby. Sometimes getting yourself dressed and fed by the end of the day may feel like a major accomplishment. You may need to divide household chores between you and your partner so that each of you can take turns caring for your baby. You may learn to multitask, delegate, and become more organised, as you cope with the simultaneous demands of parenthood.

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