A strong support network is important for new parents.
Here's some advice to help ensure you're surrounded by a supportive team to help you become the parent you want to be.
For many parents, the primary source of support is their partner. However, it's important to have more than one person to go to for help or guidance. In fact, new parents need two support networks - one focused on healthcare and one focused on personal needs like emotional support and assistance at home.
A supportive partner can help to ease your fears and frustrations. Sharing a healthy lifestyle before, during and after pregnancy is important. It’s also helpful if your partner shares in physical activities, attends appointments and classes and is actively involved in caring for your baby, including encouraging and assisting with breastfeeding. Talk with your partner about your parenting plans, hopes and dreams - by working together, you can build strong connections with one another and your child.
Personal Support Networks
While your partner may be your primary source of support, many others can be added to your personal support network. Think about asking family members, friends, neighbours and co-workers to support you. Other members of your personal support network may include a social worker, doula (trained labour and post partum assistant), community groups, cultural or religious congregations and other expectant families, such as people you met during pre-natal classes.
Health Care Support Networks
New parents also need a network of healthcare providers. In addition to your family doctor, obstetrician and/or registered midwife, you might consider adding these professionals to your healthcare support network:
- Lactation consultant
- Public health nurses
- Hospital nurses
- HealthLink BC (tele-nurses, pharmacists and dietitians, call 8-1-1 for help)
- Dental hygienist
- Prenatal educator
- Registered dietitian
- Naturopathic physician
Resources & Links:
HealthLink BC: Service Finder