This week something profound struck me and I wanted to share my thoughts with you.
I was chatting with a friend and she was telling me about her sister who has a one month old baby. She is really struggling with being a new mum and in particular with the lack of sleep. My friend told her sister to get in touch with me for some support but this was her response:
“I feel like I have to suffer and fail first before I ask for help”
This is not the first time I have heard this kind of rhetoric and it deeply saddens me. It is perpetuated on social media constantly. Look at the comments on any large Fb group when people ask for advice about how to get there little one to sleep. People immediately chirp in with “my kids didn’t sleep through the night until they were 10’ or ‘I have 6 kids and none of them were good sleepers you just have to get on with it”.
Well I am here to tell you that times have changed! Parenting has moved on and you absolutely don’t have to suffer years of sleep deprivation and feelings of helplessness just because you are a parent. By feeling like we “have to fail first” we are setting ourselves up for failure before we have even begun our parenting journey.
Help and support from well qualified practitioners is much more readily available now. We have the power to change the rhetoric around being parents and make it socially acceptable to get help right from day one, instead of suffering first. Imagine if social media and our friends and family shouted from the roof tops “get all the help and support you can” “Get a doula” “Get a midwife” ”Get a nanny” “Get a sleep consultant” “get a lactation consultant” You get the gist.
This is the powerful message that I want you to join me in sharing. Instead of glorifying sleepless nights as a badge of honor, let’s encourage friends and family to embrace seeking help and support from day one. By changing the parenting narrative and empowering new parents to seek help early on, we can make the parenting journey a more enjoyable and fulfilling experience for everyone.
Is parenting tiring and hard yes! But please don’t suffer unnecessarily.