5 Ways to Ask for Help Postpartum

And who to ask for it.

5 Ways to Ask for Help Postpartum

As modern women, we’re almost trained to not ask for help. We want to show our bosses and coworkers we can handle whatever comes our way. We want our friends and family to see us as strong and independent. But, mama, when it comes to taking care of your little one, the phrase “it takes a village” was coined for a reason.

You just gave birth. The recovery pain is absurd, the sleep is nearly nonexistent and oh yeah, you’re also responsible for feeding, burping and changing around the clock. You deserve – and need – a little bit of help. Checking an item off your registry is one thing, but the people who love you most will want to go the extra mile… and you should let them.

Here are five ways you can ask for help, and some pro tips on who to ask for it from.

1. Your partner. Of course your partner wants to help, but they might not know how or when. Have a conversation with your other half about what you hope they can help with once you get home. Maybe you decide to handle all the overnight feedings if your teammate pulls night shift diaper duty. Hydration is key when nursing, so asking that your partner to make sure you always have a glass of water handy is super helpful. Whatever is most important to you – make sure your partner knows, so they can feel useful and you can feel taken care of.

2. Parents and In-Laws. Here’s where you can ask for those big-ticket items. Would you like your mom to come stay for a few weeks after you bring your tiny one home? Ask if that’s something she is able to do. Are your in-laws bummed they’re on the other side of the country? Let them know they could be huge helpers by hiring a cleaning company to come by every few weeks. Don’t be afraid to let your parents know what you’d love to count on them for, and have your partner ask their parents if you feel uncomfortable.

3. Siblings, best friends. These are the people who will be around a lot in the weeks and months after your baby is born. Let them know ahead of time you will likely be asking for help with some household chores. Here’s a great tip I stole from a friend: print out a list of tasks you anticipate needing help with (watering plants, unloading dishwasher, taking the dog on a walk) and hang it on the fridge. Let everyone who comes over know where the list is – you’ll be surprised how many items get checked off!

4. Office mates, casual friends. They’re probably planning a small office baby shower or a pre-baby brunch. You might not be close enough to these friends or coworkers to feel comfortable asking for help at home, so think outside the box. Non-traditional gift cards are a huge lifesaver after baby is born. Instead of cards for Buy Buy Baby or Babies-r-Us, ask for meal delivery services. Blue Apron, Hello Fresh. Amazon cards are a great way to go, too, because everything you’ll need won’t just be for the baby (Can you say pee-proof underwear?! Yep. Amazon has those). Let the friend or coworkers you’re closest with know what would be the biggest help, and he or she can spread the word.

5. Everyone else. Get Over the Awkward. We know you want to be that one in a million mama who has it completely together from day one, but trust us: babies are overwhelming. Asking for and accepting help might feel a little awkward at first, but you’ll be thankful you did. When someone you love asks if he or she can pitch in, say yes – then pick a task that’s best for them and for your relationship.

14 sweet 'just thinking of you' gifts for every mama

A sweet surprise that tells her you've been thinking of her might be the pick-me-up she needs.

Who says you have to wait for birthdays or holidays to give your bestie a great gift? A sweet surprise that tells her you've been thinking of her might be the pick-me-up she needs in these more-than-trying times. We've rounded up some of our favorite go-to gifts that are certain to be a bright spot in her week. But be warned, you may want to snag a few for yourself. (You deserve it, mama.)

Here are some our favorite "just because" gifts to give our hardworking mama friends.

New Mother face + body care duo

volition face + body care duo

This correcting oil and stretch mark minimizer is perfect for the pregnant mama looking to keep her pregnancy glow. The correcting oil brightens the skin while reducing dark spots, and the stretch mark minimizer works to smooth her ever-growing belly.


Allover roller

esker allover roller

This jade roller goes beyond your typical face roller and can be used anywhere on the body. It works to increase stimulation and reduce puffiness and is perfect for applying any oils to the face or body. Plus, it feels like a mini spa treatment.


Kombucha making kit

farmsteady kombucha making kit

What could be a more perfect gift for the health-obsessed friend? This kombucha making kit comes with everything you need to brew your own homemade green tea kombucha. They'll think this is the tastiest gift ever.


Laetitia lipstick

cupid & psyche laetitia

This red lipstick is perfect for your makeup enthusiast bestie who is looking to spruce up her life in quarantine. Crafted in the United States, these bee and vegan-friendly and cruelty-free lipsticks are created to flatter all complexions. Cupid and Psyche Beauty makes finding the perfect red lip way too easy!


Jigsaw puzzle

inner piecec jigsaw puzzle

Mamas need to destress now more than ever during quarantine. This adorable jigsaw puzzle is perfect for the mama who needs a brain break! The 500-piece puzzle designed by artist Ray Oranges features an abstract gradient design that fits a standard frame when completed. Bonus: It's printed on recycled paper and the company donates $1 from every puzzle sold to youth mindfulness programs.


Matilda's Bloombox

matilda's bloombox

If we have to be stuck inside, we might as well have some gorgeous florals to brighten up the space. Matilda's Bloombox locally sources blooms, delivers them to her door and provides simple tips on how to arrange it into a beautiful bouquet.


'I Am Enough' bracelet

I Am Enough bracelet

Let this dainty bracelet serve as a constant reminder to your bestie that she is enough. She'll wear this on her wrist and read this daily oath to herself, "I Am Enough."


Glow assorted teas

vahdam low assorted teas

This tea gift box set covers the entire spectrum of flavors from sweet to spicy. Individually packaged in beautiful tins, your gal pal will feel like a queen sipping her morning tea. Originally $40, this set is currently on sale for just $24. We'll take two, please.


Find your voice journal

find your voice journal

Journaling is a great way to ease anxiety and will slow your bestie's racing mind before bed. This gift is perfect for first time journalists and includes prompts, daily quotes and coloring pages to help her unlock her potential and find her voice.


Premium frother

shore magic premium frother

This gift is fitting for your latte-sipping bestie who can't go a day without her coffee. All she has to do is add two scoops of collagen to her favorite drink, and she'll have a perfectly foamy drink ready in seconds. Skipping the drive-thru line has never been so easy!


Bath soak infusion kit

maude bath soak infusion kit

Say hello to hydration! She'll be feeling smooth and relaxed as ever after a long bath soaking in these salts. This vegan + cruelty-free set incorporates dead sea salt and dehydrated coconut milk powder for an ultra hydrating experience.


Tiny Tags 'mama' necklace

Tiny Tags 'mama' necklace

It's a hard-earned title she answers to a hundred times per day. Whether she's new to the club or a seasoned professional, this delicate script 'mama' necklace is guaranteed to be a perfect fit.


Superfood honey

Beekeeper's Naturals B.Powered honey

With a lack of sleep and jam-packed days, getting through the afternoon can be a real challenge. Send her a powerful pick-me-up in the form of a therapeutic blend of royal jelly, bee pollen, propolis and raw honey. It makes the ideal companion for tea, smoothies, yogurt or even on its on.


Calming midnight mask with melatonin

Who doesn't deserve a reminder to pamper themself every once in awhile? Even better, this mask does all its work at night while you're sleeping with no extra effort needed. It's an amazing plant-powered antioxidant-packed mask that has melatonin, wild dandelion leaf and hyaluronic acid to rehydrate, repair and reset facial skin. It's so good, you might want to gift it to yourself. We won't tell, mama.


We independently select and share the products we love—and may receive a commission if you choose to buy. You've got this.


This incredibly soft comforter from Sunday Citizen is like sleeping on a cloud

My only complaint? I've slept through my alarm twice.

When it comes to getting a good night's sleep, there are many factors that, as a mama, are hard to control. Who's going to wet the bed at 3 am, how many times a small person is going to need a sip of water, or the volume of your partner's snoring are total wildcards.

One thing you can control? Tricking out your bed to make it as downright cozy as possible. (And in these times, is there anywhere you want to be than your bed like 75% of the time?)

I've always been a down comforter sort of girl, but after a week of testing the ridiculously plush and aptly named Snug Comforter from Sunday Citizen, a brand that's run by "curators of soft, seekers of chill" who "believe in comfort over everything," it's safe to say I've been converted.

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This viral post about the 4th trimester is exactly what new mamas need right now

"We are alone. Together. You are surrounded all the other mothers who are navigating this tender time in isolation. You are held by all of us who have walked the path before you and who know how much you must be hurting. You are wrapped in the warm embrace of mama earth, as she too settles into this time of slowness and healing."

Artist and teacher Catie Atkinson at Spirit y Sol recently shared a beautiful drawing of a new mom crying on a couch—leaking breasts, newborn baby, pile of laundry and what we can only assume is cold coffee, included. Everything about the image is so real and raw to me—from the soft stomach to the nursing bra and the juxtaposition of the happy wallpaper to the palpable vulnerability of the mother—I can almost feel the couch underneath me. I can feel the exhaustion deep in this woman's bones.

My heart feels the ache of loneliness right alongside hers. Because I remember. I remember the confusion and uncertainty and love and messy beauty of the fourth trimester so well. After all, it's etched in our minds and bodies forever.

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