My Friend Invited Me to See Her Newborn, What Are the Do’s and Don’ts I Should Know?
Every second, around 4 babies are born around the world. When we become parents, we can’t believe we “made this baby.” Among feeling on top of the world and happy to get to know this sort of love, it can often lead to us feeling overwhelmed and exhausted. Whether you’re child-free or whether you already have kids, sooner or later, a friend of yours will give birth and they’ll need a shoulder to lean on.
One Bright Side reader was invited to the home of new parents and is unsure about the etiquette and protocol for visiting their newborn. To help this reader and others in similar situations, we have compiled a list of the most frequent do’s and don’ts.
Hey Erin! We appreciate you asking for help, this means you care about your friend and their newborn baby. We went on an adventure in search of the best tips and tricks, and here’s what we found.
- Be mindful of parents’ schedules when setting up the meeting. As they probably feed the baby every 2-3 hours, they know best when they can receive visitors. The best idea is to just agree with the time and date they propose.
- Don’t bring a crowd. You can ask the parents if you can bring your significant other. Most importantly, if anyone in your household feels under the weather, it’s best to delay the meeting to avoid spreading germs to the baby.
- Avoid strong scents like perfume and cologne because these can be overwhelming for a baby’s strong senses.
- Bring a small gift, like diapers, blankets, or fresh takeaway food — but talk to the parents beforehand. They’ve probably received a ton of presents, and it’s a safer bet to actually bring them something they need rather than something that will never see the light of day again.
- Wash your hands thoroughly before handling the baby. Hold them in your arms, but only if the parents are comfortable enough to offer.
- Let the parents lead the interaction. Keep the noise to a minimum, as newborns can be easily startled.
- Respect privacy, and don’t post any pictures of the newborn on social media without the parents’ consent.
- Offer to help with practical tasks, like running errands, cooking, or doing laundry. Ask the parents what they need and respect their boundaries.
- Be supportive. New parents might want to share all the details about how their angel came into the world with you, their friend. Sometimes new parenthood can feel lonely, so offer support or be a listening ear if your friends need to talk.
- Be mindful of the length of your visit. Try to appreciate their need for downtime. After the visit, check up on the parents to see how they’re doing and offer any additional support.