Sex after baby? You’re still not ready…

first time sex after babyRobyn had a baby three months ago. She’s settling into mommy mode quite nicely and enjoying her new baby. But she’s not looking forward to having sex again. In fact, she’s dreading it! Her doctor gave her the greenlight six weeks after she gave birth but she’s just not feeling it. She doesn’t want it to affect her relationship with her hubby who has been so understanding.sex-after-delivery633x319

Lots of women experience a dip in their post-partum sex life. It doesn’t always snap back to what it previously once was and may take a while. There may be a number of reasons why you could be battling to get your sexy back. Firstly, you may not be ready because your body is probably still healing. Your c-section or episiotomy wounds are healing, and your hormones are all over the place. Not to mention, that you are most likely exhausted and very overwhelmed because you have to take care of a new baby.

We look at 5 useful tips to help you ease back into sex after giving birth.

1.   Let your partner know how you feelMy-Partner-Needs-Therapy

Your partner may be ready to have sex, but you’re not! Tell him how you are feeling – it could be that you are still feeling sore, your breasts are tender and leaky or you need more time. He might also feel rejected and that all your attention is focused on the baby now and not him. By being honest and sharing your concerns together, you are keeping the channels of communication open.

2.    Be close in other waysintimacy without sex

Start off by fostering closeness by kissing, cuddling, hugging or spending time together. Schedule a date night, go for a walk or watch a movie together – these are little ways to help encourage intimacy again.

3.   Take it slowlywhere-to-touch-her-mind_0

It’s important to remember that sex doesn’t always need to be full penetration but simply touching and speaking to each other can help you to feel close to each other again. Use lots of foreplay and just enjoy each other  until you feel you are ready to have sex again.

4.   When you are eventually ready…the moment

So, the big moment has arrived. Make sure that you are ready to have sex and not putting yourself under pressure. Try not to start off with a vigorous session but take it gently and slowly with a position that is comfortable for you and your body. If you don’t enjoy it and are still feeling sensitive, try again another time. Trust that it will get better!

5.   And lastly, don’t be so hard on yourself!Mother and baby napping,couch

Cut yourself some slack and remember that your body has been through a lot. Be kind to yourself! Eat healthy, well balanced meals and drink plenty of fluids. Mostly, try to get as much rest as you can because you will feel exhausted and lack energy from looking after your little one.   great_sex_after_baby

Believe and continue to reassure yourself that your sex life will return back to normal again. And, of course once you find your rhythm as a mommy, you’ll be more relaxed and calm, and the sex goddess in YOU will be waiting to emerge!

Going back to work after baby!

stressed-mother-holding-baby-nurseryAmy, my sister in-law is getting ready to go back to work after six months of maternity leave. She’s freaking out because she doesn’t want to leave her gorgeous baby  but never really planned on being a stay-at-home mommy either. Having a rewarding career has always fulfilled Amy and as much as she loves it, she’s already experiencing so much mommy guilt about not being able to be with Max 24/7.What-You-Need-To-Know-About-Your-First-Day-Back-At-Work

Lots of moms feel stressed and anxious about preparing to go back to work after having a baby. Naturally, this is a difficult time for moms and it is quite normal to feel this way! While many of you, like Amy, will most likely beat yourself up about your impending return to work, there are some tips to make the transition easier and not feel so guilty about being a working mom….in time (of course!)

Here are some helpful tips to get you through the first few months back at work:

1.   Find a good nanny or childcare servicesreturning-from-maternity-leave_600_hpchqi

Choose a nanny or day care that makes you confident – you need to feel comfortable about who you leave your baby with. This will make a big difference to your adjustment as well!  Do your homework first, work on referrals from friends and family and visit the day care before you make a decision. Make sure that you hire someone that you can trust and you feel comfortable with. It’s all about chemistry – you have to feel a connection with your potential nanny or day care. Mostly, it is very important that you trust the person who will be caring for your baby, especially in their formative years.

2.   Be prepared and plan aheadhqdefault (1)

Going back to work after being at home for a while will be stressful and the adjustment may take time. Be smart and make things easier for yourself when you come home to your baby in the evenings. If you are breastfeeding, store breastmilk in advance so that you don’t have to worry about doing that too. Make notes for your nanny or day care about your baby’s routine, likes and dislikes. This information will be helpful to them and give you peace of mind that they can attend to your baby’s needs in the best way possible.

3.   Work together as a teamworking_parents

As you are also working now, you and hubby or your partner should be on the same page about sharing chores and duties at home. Share responsibilities for making dinner, doing laundry, changing baby or bathing the kids. Doing this will help to take the pressure off you and will also strengthen your bond even more as partners.

4.   Have a support system in placeo-GRANDPARENT-BABY-facebook

While you may have a nanny or day care, it’s also important to have a support system in place that you can depend on. There may be a day where your nanny doesn’t pitch or your baby is ill and can’t go to day care, and you would need a backup plan if you can’t be there. Get support from close family and friends that you can rely on, who will be able to support you and be available when you need them.

5.     Don’t forget about me-time!hot-stone-massage-for-mom_ifkwhr

Being back at work and having a baby can be very overwhelming! Juggling work demands and home life isn’t a walk in the park. Remember, to take time out. It’s good for you and you are going to need it to feel whole again. Find time to relax in a soothing bath, go for a walk alone, have coffee with a friend or treat yourself to a massage. Your baby needs a relaxed and healthy mommy!mum-going-back-to-work-after-maternity-leave.jpg.2016-04-04-16-03-31

As with everything in life, adjusting to a new routine is not always easy. Returning to work after baby may not be easy in the beginning but you’ll find your groove again. Try not to be too hard on yourself, be patient and you’ll soon settle into the next stage of your journey as a mother!

Attachment and bonding: How important is it?

I have a friend called Leslie who recently gave birth to the most beautiful boy. He is an absolute darling! However, she confided to me that she doesn’t feel as though she has bonded with him.

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This resonated with me as I had experienced something similar just a couple of years ago, where I too had no feelings of attachment. I felt that my baby and I would not have a connection and it made me very anxious and worried.

Giving birth to a child is one of the most beautiful things any mother can experience. While this can be a beautiful experience,  it can also bring up issues like how to bond properly with your baby. Don’t Worry! This affects most mothers and many feel stressed that they cannot bond properly with their baby. Now you may be wondering how important the attachment process really is? Be assured that the bonding and attachment process you have with your baby is incredibly IMPORTANT and will help your baby to develop and grow properly.cradlecap

What is the attachment process?

Attachment is very important for you and your baby as it allows the two of you to experience intense feelings of bonding and emotional connection. These feelings of physical, mental and spiritual connection will help you to guide and develop your baby and as he gets older, and keep the bond between the two of you strong.

Forming an attachment with your baby helps him to feel secure, nurtured and calm. This sort of attachment bond is an extremely important tool in your baby’s development as it helps your baby’s brain develop.

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Why attachment is not only important for the baby but for you as well:

When I told my best friend Leslie about attachment, she  thought it only related to the baby attaching himself to her and not her to the baby. She was flabbergasted when she learned that she could form an equally strong attachment with her baby.

Most people don’t realise how the mother attaches herself to the new-born baby through physical and emotional connections. One of the things you must do to form a great attachment bond is to take care of yourself. I know that it may sound weird at first but trust me, looking after yourself by getting enough sleep (if that’s even possible!), getting help and support around the house and even getting some alone time for yourself can help immensely in the process of attachment. The reason why this is important is because the more burden you bear on yourself the more you will become weary, tired and emotionally drained.

How to help yourself form an attachment with your baby

There are certain things you can do to form that unique bond with your baby:

  1. Learn and interpret your baby’s cries and body language – play with your baby, get to know what makes him tick. Learn what calms, soothes or placates him. Touch your baby. His brain should be developing and reacting to your touch and emotions. These touches and connections will get your child to bond with you even further.play
  2. Rest and relaxation as well as feeding your baby can be excellent opportunities for you to emotionally and physically bond with your child.  Allowing your baby to have proper rest will allow him to be calm and alert. Without rest your baby cannot function and his brain cannot develop properly, thereby depriving him of an important time to attach himself with you.HG253_baby-breastfeeding-basics_FS
  3. Laugh, talk and play with your baby – physical interaction is extremely important as it allows time for the baby to retain the ability to recognise you. Have fun with your baby, pull funny faces, smile, be happy, and hold him close to you. Your loving touch and happy tone of voice is crucial to your baby’s development with you. Make him feel relaxed and you will begin to see the emotional attachment with your baby begin to form twice as fast!670px-Keep-a-Baby-Entertained-Step-3
  4. Consider co-sleeping. Snuggling up together at night can really help to strengthen the bond between baby and parents. If you are breastfeeding, sleeping together makes night feeds very easy and relaxed!

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Babies are curious little creatures! Every new experience fills them with wonder and delight. You can guide and develop them, not just physically but also emotionally and mentally towards proper attachment between new-born and parent. Like my best friend Leslie said to me, “The touch between a parent and new born is ever-lasting, so make it a happy touch.”

 

The Natural Approach to Vomiting and Diarrhoea in Children!

The first time my son developed vomiting and diarrhoea, it was quite daunting! His tiny tummy was cramping up and he was so distressed! I couldn’t reach for the towel fast enough if he was vomiting. I couldn’t change his diaper fast enough if he was pooing. And the only thing I wanted to do was to rush to the hospital, because it seemed like all of his insides were coming out! Just some of the gory stuff we go through as parents…..

As they grow up however, it happens again and again and you realise, it’s normal. It’s the body’s way of removing the bad stuff! Holistic medicine understands that when there is a tummy bug or virus, or if the child has swallowed something bad, the best way to get rid of this is via vomiting and diarrhoea. Vomiting and diarrhoea , although they can be very yucky and also very uncomfortable, actually mean that your child’s system is working as it should do – and you need to work with it and not against it!

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So, what can you do when your child has vomiting and diarrhoea?

Firstly, try not to overreact. Don’t stress too much about your 1000 thread count Egyptian cotton sheets getting puked on, or the mess on your white carpet. Just Kidding!

On a more serious note though, it will get messy and it will get smelly. Even when they are past the diaper stage, accidents still happen.

Most of the time if your child gets a tummy bug, or it if is caused by something they have eaten, it can be treated at home. Here are some of the important things you can do:

  • Your child will be feeling ill but also upset about the mess – so keep her comfortable and reassure her that she will soon start feeling better once her tummy has got rid of the germs that are making her feel sick It is very important to make sure that your little one is hydrated, especially if he is experiencing regular bouts of vomiting, diarrhea or both.  Plenty of liquids are the order of the day. Children won’t feel like eating (and don’t worry about this) but they should drink liquids. Even sucking on some ice (older children only, not babies!) will help! Replace electrolytes – banana is a good source of the electrolyte potassium and other key vitamins. Oral rehydration solution can also be given, sold in readily available sachets.

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  • Try to keep feeding patterns regular – You can feed bland solid food such as toast, potatoes or rice because they need the fibre. This is easier said than done though, as they are usually very crabby. So don’t force your child to eat. Liquids are far more important and his appetite will pick up again once he feels better. Thin slices of toast with Bovril or marmite or dry crackers are good. Overcooked rice is an excellent binder for anyone with bad diarrhoea and also helps to cleanse the digestive system. Cook the rice until it is mushy and give this to your child along with the starchy rice water. Another good staple for upset tummies is slices of apple, allowed to go slightly brown.  Feed at least 30mins after a vomiting episode, so that your child’s tummy muscles can recover otherwise he will bring it all up again.

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  • Refrain from giving dairy at this time, as this can cause more upset to the stomach lining. Substitute with Soy Milk or you can give vegetable soups as a replacement. However, breastfeeding babies or those still on bottled formula should continue to feed as normal.  Probiotics and the live cultures found in yogurt are an excellent remedy for vomiting and diarrhea. Fenugreek seed powder mixed with yogurt will also allow your child to regain lost energy. Ginger is also very good for a healthy digestive tract, some ginger and honey tea will help (babies under a year old, however, should not be given honey). If you have mint growing in your garden, add a few leaves of mint to the tea, which can be given hot or cold.  Both mint and ginger are excellent remedies for vomiting and diarrhoea and will help to reduce nausea and calm the digestive system.

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  • A great ready-made natural remedy for children with upset tummies is Tummy Trumbles by Feelgood Health.

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When to call the doctor: Most bouts of diarrhoea and vomiting last a day or two and then disappear.  Be extra cautious if your child experiences these bouts for more than 36hrs, has a high fever, blood in the stool or blood in vomit. Consult your doctor or homeopath if you notice any of these signs or if the illness goes on for too long.

What can be done to avoid vomiting and diarrhoea in children?

It’s almost impossible to prevent our children from getting sick. The tummy bug is very contagious. It’s natural for the body to want to expel harmful germs and bacteria, by means of throwing up or passing stool.  Our bodies are amazing as tiny as they are.

We can assist our children in maintaining their bodies wellbeing,  by teaching them good hygiene habits and by following these ourselves:

  • Teach children to wash hands before eating, and after  using the toilet.
  • Rinse their fruits and vegetables well.
  • Refrigerate meat and meat products properly.
  • Keep surfaces clean
  • Keep eating areas of pets separate from family eating areas.

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After all is said and done. Just try and do what’s best for your child. Make good hydration and keeping your child comfortable your first priority. Try to stick to natural remedies  for vomiting and diarrhoea and your child will soon be as right as rain again!

For more information on a natural remedy to treat your child’s upset tummy, follow the link attached. http://www.naturalkids.co.za/products/tummytrumbles-natural-remedy-child-diarrhoea

 

 

 

What to Do When Your New Baby Gets the Flu!

I remember when my little one was born. Those first few weeks are amazing as you bond and fall in love with your new baby. Of course, hubby and I were not the only ones falling in love and our little bundle of joy was being smooched by aunties galore! With all the exposure to other people, I suppose it was inevitable that he picked up something more than kisses – and we were horrified when his nose became snotty and blocked when he was only three weeks old.

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What to do? We felt so helpless! He was battling to sleep and even feeding became a little bit stressful. Years later, we take the occasional cold and ‘flu in our stride – but at that time, we were super worried! Common illnesses can be very stressful for parents of new babies, who do not really know what to do. In the first 3 months, babies are susceptible to infections, because their immune systems haven’t developed yet.  Especially in the winter months, babies are likely to contract colds or ‘flu

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What’s the difference between a cold and the ‘flu?

It is not always easy to tell the difference between a common cold and the ‘flu in babies because the symptoms are quite similar. Your little one may have a runny nose, congestion and a cough. However, it is more likely that your baby has the ‘flu if symptoms include a fever of 38° degrees and above. Other symptoms of the ‘flu  include, vomiting, diarrhoea, lack of appetite and trouble sleeping.

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What to do if you suspect your new baby has the ‘flu

While common childhood illnesses are difficult for parents and new babies, the good news is that they help to strengthen your baby’s new immune system. From a holistic health point of view, they are therefore good for your baby and will help to develop a strong  immune system which will be able to protect your child from more serious illnesses.

From a naturopathic point of view, you should also remember that symptoms like nasal discharge, fever, coughing and sneezing are also mechanisms used by the body to overcome the virus which your child has contracted and to expel it from the body. When we suppress them too much, we are interfering with the natural healing process and this can even lead to secondary complications.

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The idea, therefore, is to keep your baby as comfortable as possible, while not interfering too much. If you do this, the cold or ‘flu will disappear in a few days and will leave your baby with a stronger immune system.

Here are a few things that you can do to keep your little one comfy and to assist recovery:

  • Your baby will need to stay hydrated, so make sure that she has plenty of fluids. If you are able to breastfeed, this will be good for your baby’s immune system, as you will pass your own antibodies on to your little one and help fight off the virus naturally. Let your little one feed as often as she likes. If snottiness is causing a problem with feeding or sleeping, you can keepyour baby’s nasal passages clear by suctioning out mucus with a rubber bulb syringe, but only do this if it is really necessary. A runny nose is nature’s way of expelling the virus and is therefore a good sign that your baby’s body is working well. Don’t suction your baby’s nose unless you really have to as babies understandably don’t like it much!
  • Sitting your baby upright in your lap with a steam vaporizer or cool-mist humidifier in the nursery is also a good thing and will help to keep nasal passages and little chests clear without suppressing the nasal discharges. Essential oils like eucalyptus and pine in an oil burner are excellent, but make sure that the candle is protected to prevent fires
  • Keep your baby lightly dressed if he has  a fever, as well as maintaining a normal room temperature. Avoid room heaters and overdressing your baby. A lukewarm bath or even wiping down with a cool cloth will also help to keep temperatures down.
  • Homeopathic remedies are safe even for new born babies and are very effective in addressing symptoms of colds and ‘flu without interfering with your baby’s own immune response. Sniffly Sprinkles  in the Feelgood Health range has been safely used by babies and young children for many years and is easy to administer.
  • Sleep, sleep and more sleep is key – so let your baby sleep as much as possible while he is recovering.
  • Remember that antibiotics are not effective against viral infections like colds and ‘flu and should be a last resort only if there is a secondary infection that is not responding well to treatment.

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Preventing your baby from getting the ‘flu’

As pointed out above, common childhood illnesses, believe it or not,  are actually good for your baby and are a normal part of healthy development . Babies and children that are overprotected from catching colds and those who are kept in too sterile an environment are not ab le to build up a strong immune system and will be more susceptible to other illnesses.

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However, one does want to delay the onset of colds and ‘flu in very small babies and this is not always an easy task. In the first 3 months, try and be a little more cautious and keep baby away as much as possible from friends and family who have active infections.  To give your babies immune system a good start, it is advisable to breastfeed exclusively for at least the first 6 months. Research shows that babies who nurse are also less likely to get stomach bugs and respiratory tract infections.

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So – if you are a new mom or dad, try to relax and understand that colds and ‘flu are nature’s way of strengthening your baby. Follow the tips above to keep baby as comfy as possible while allowing her body to do what it does best! Of course, if fevers won’t come down or if you are at all concerned, it is always best to consult your homeopath or doctor to make sure that all is well. A good doctor will examine your baby and be able to reassure you that all is well, without interfering too much!

Can new moms really find time to take a break?

My bestie, Claudia is a first time mama. I popped in over the weekend to find her in a complete state. She looked a mess! There she was in sweats, a stained top and uncombed hair with little Ava crying in her arms. And, as soon as she saw me, she burst into tears.

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We all know that new moms (or all moms for that matter) never have time for themselves. Time for yourself is a luxury but it’s also so necessary. Claudia was so overwhelmed, exhausted and stressed and needed some time for herself to recharge her batteries. It may seem impossible to take a break with a new baby but mommies you need to do this for your own sanity and to be a better mom.

Here are a few ideas of how all the new mamas can take a break and get some much needed R & R.

  1. Get some help

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You may think that you can cope and looking after your baby will be a breeze. Reality check! This is not always the case especially if your baba is niggly or sick. If you can afford it, hire a nanny for a few hours a day to help out or ask your mom, sister or friend for help. It’s okay to ask for help and in the first few months of being a new mommy, you will need all the support you can get. So, go on and ask!

  1. Share baby duties and household chores with hubby

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Involve your partner or husband in baby duties and household chores. Let him change or feed the baby while you shower or do your hair. Many dads are eager to become more involved in caring for their baby and you should encourage it too. When you are both involved in your child’s care from the very beginning, it also strengthens your bond and love for each other.

  1. Join a mommy group

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Connect with like-minded moms or go to a class especially for new mommies. Here you will meet moms who are experiencing the same highs and lows of motherhood that you are. You can chat about your babies, childcare or how to lose weight over coffee. Best of all, you may even get lucky and make a really good friend there!

  1. Start exercising

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It’s easier said than done but try to start exercising if you can. Ease into it gently by taking baby for a walk or going back to gym. Remember, don’t overdo it at first and start with a gentle exercise routine like Pilates.  It’s the perfect way to take a break and feel good about yourself again!

  1. Pamper yourself

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Be good to yourself mommies! You are still recovering from childbirth and your emotions are all over the place. Treat yourself to a postpartum massage, have your toenails painted, colour your hair, go on a date with your hubby or meet a girlfriend for coffee. As much as you are a mommy now, you still need to feel good about YOU!

 

Remember, as I told Claudia – what would your little one do without you? Don’t you think that you should be looking after the most important person in your baby’s life? So, don’t be Superwoman – be yourself. Take all the help you can get and let your friends and family step in and support you!

 

Tips on how dads can connect and bond with their baby from the start

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The birth of your child is one of the best experiences of any parent’s life. The pure joy of bringing a life into the world is second to none. Many mothers get to experience these wonderful feelings yet they are often concerned that their partners don’t experience the same type of bond that they have with their new-born babies. Many dads experience these fears of being unable to connect with their babies. It can be a very emotional thing to experience but don’t worry! There are ways that fathers can bond with their babies to create an everlasting relationship between parent and child:

1: Skin to skin contact

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Babies respond well to skin on skin contact, it has been widely documented that spending more and more time, touching, holding and playing with your baby increases the paternal bond. Make sure that as a dad you spend as much time with your new-born baby and do things such as playing with him or trying to create as much skin on skin contact with your child. These moments will allow your baby to become more familiar and comfortable with you.

2: Be on night watch for your child

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If your baby is hungry, needs to changed or a bit fussy, get up and go to your baby. This is a good way to give your partner a break too especially if she’s spending most of her time with your child. This may be hard for certain men especially if they have are heavy sleepers but persevere! The emotional connection you will have with your child is priceless!

3: Co Sleep with your baby

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Many dads might be anxious around their baby at first. You might feel as if you don’t want to hold the baby too tight or you hurt him or her. Every dad experiences these insecurities from time to time. This is perfectly normal and you can work through these feelings with your partner.

Many parents swear by co-sleeping as they feel it increases   the attachment between parents and children. Take some time out of your busy weekend to have naps with your baby as a father, it will be very fulfilling for you and your baby as you will both begin to experience each other in a deeper physical and more emotional level.

4: Play with your baby as long and as often as possible

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Most of the time spent between a baby and the parent is often with the mother. Situations like this can lead to fathers feeling left out in the bonding process or can have them feeling apathetic towards their baby. To solve this, you should spend as much time with your baby. Play peek-a-boo, hold him up in the air, and take the baby with you when you go out. All these activities will help strengthen the bond between you two as you build trust with each other.

5: Learn to communicate through hand signs and verbal gestures

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Babies cannot communicate  verbally yet as they cannot understand anything that is being said. As a father it is important to connect with your child on a physical level. Getting your child used to basic communication phrases will mentally stimulate them to be more inquisitive about their surroundings. The more intimate you are with them, the more they will pick up on any physical cue you have which will allow them to develop their own motor neuron skills. Just remember that the process will be emotionally rewarding for both of you as you navigate through the wonders of growing together.

It isn’t easy connecting first time with your baby. With hard work and a loving attitude you can bond instantly with your

Do you think women should breastfeed in public?

Do you think women should  breastfeed in public?

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It almost seems absurd that such a question should be asked and yet this always becomes such a controversial topic.  Last week, Edgars, a well-known department store in Cape Town was slammed after the manager banned a mother from breastfeeding in the store. Seriously people, how can a mother not be allowed to breastfeed her child in public? Or why should she have to cover up in public to breastfeed her baby?

While most of us know that breastfeeding is actually good for your baby, this perfectly natural act still seems to upset and make others uncomfortable. Many mothers are even scared and feel ashamed to breastfeed their baby in public for fear of being ridiculed and antagonised. As a result, many breastfeeding moms feel that their only option is to retreat to the bathroom or toilet of a mall to feed their child when out shopping. Imagine how that must feel? Sitting in a small toilet cubicle nursing your baby in order to avoid the disapproving stares of those who discriminate against breastfeeding in public. Added to that, it’s not really the most hygienic of all places either to feed your baby!

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So, for those who condemn breastfeeding in public…do you want moms and their babies to stay at home and not go out so that they can avoid breastfeeding in public? Some mothers are already uncomfortable with nursing in front of others and when incidents such as the breastfeeding mom in the department store happens, it may make them have even more  reservations about breastfeeding in public.  Breastfeeding moms are not the ones who should be ostracised here but rather the haters should feel ashamed and guilty of themselves!What do you think?

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Thank goodness for organisations like Normalise Public Breastfeeding in South Africa who are calling for legislation to protect mothers from the discrimination and shaming they face when nursing in public. Check them out on Facebook to follow and show support for this cause. They have proposed a draft bill which was submitted to Health Minister, Aaron Motsoaledi that it will be declared an offence to stop a woman from breastfeeding in public. We wait in anticipation for this legislation to be passed and grant breastfeeding mothers the freedom to nurse wherever and whenever their baby is hungry!

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I’m definitely going to support this Bill. What about you? Let’s normalise breastfeeding once and for all!

 

How to keep your relationship strong even after your baby’s arrival

I was at a baby shower recently and some of my friends were chatting about babies (of course!) but mostly how they impact on your relationship and marriage. For me, who would like to start a family in the near future, it was a rude awakening to hear how much your relationship changes when that little peanut makes an appearance! So, while munching on cupcakes and sipping bubbly, my friends sat me down out of earshot of the soon-to-be mommy and let me know what is really in store for her and me…eventually!

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Life after baby…

We’ve all heard that life changes after your baby’s arrival but did you know how much it actually does? The thing is we don’t tell each other enough just how bad it gets and that’s the problem! Every couple who’ve had a baby experiences a major life change – some may handle the new addition to their family better than others while others simply find their relationship floundering.

Before the birth, you think that you, hubby and baby are going to be this awesome trio and everything will work out beautifully.  Unfortunately, this is not the case as babies don’t always fit into your life perfectly.  This little being will occupy very second of your day, demanding your undivided attention and expecting you to be at his beck and call. Be prepared!

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You start resenting your partner and irritation and frustration creeps in when you start feeling that YOU are doing everything for your baby and he isn’t pulling his weight. Imagine what it’s like to be sleep deprived and have to get up every four hours to breastfeed a crying baby…all the while your better half sleeps soundly. Not to mention that sex is now totally on the back burner! Why? Because, you are tired, stressed, your hormones are completely out of whack and you still feel like a big, bloated whale.

Right now, you probably also love your baby more than your partner and you want to be around him all the time. Men don’t get this and often feel hurt that they don’t have our undivided attention anymore. And then, to top it all there isn’t much time for anything else! Forget being able to watch The Bachelorette, having your hair coloured or going to eat at a restaurant. It’s not happening because this little one demands most of your precious time.

This doesn’t sound good right? Especially, for our relationships! I admit that I listened to my friends dish out all the negatives but was eager to hear if there were solutions. There has to be a solution because what would be the point of having a family, then?

What you can do to help your relationship survive a new baby!

  1. 1.       It’s okay to leave your baby with someone else

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Find someone you trust to leave your baby with. Initially, this is difficult because you don’t want to leave this precious bundle for one second but it’s good for you as well as your baby. Be brave!

  1. 2.       Couple dates

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Yes, the baby comes first right now but so does your relationship and marriage. Make an effort to spend alone time together. Hire a baby sitter or drop the little one off at your parents while you both go out for dinner or watch a movie. Let the focus just be the two of you. Remember happy parents = Happy baby!

  1. 3.       Me-time

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As much as you need couple time, you also need me-time. Take time out to nurture yourself even if you are going to have a long, relaxing bath or watch your favourite TV show. Let your partner check on the baby while you recharge your batteries and your soul.

  1. 4.       Have sex

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Women often don’t feel very sexy after having a baby or some even feel that now that they are a mother, it’s too weird to have sex. Work on getting your mojo back! Start by talking to your partner about how you are feeling and where you are at and then slowly ease back into it. You both need to understand that breastfeeding and all the hormones involved in having a new baby can often mean that sex drive goes out the window. However, cuddling doesn’t! Spend more cuddle time together and your sex drive will start coming back again.

  1. 5.       Lose the sweat pants

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Don’t fall into the “I’m a mom and only wear sweat pants now!” Yes, the baby does consume you but don’t go a whole day without showering, brushing your teeth or hair. Make an effort to do the basics for yourself because it makes the world of difference. Lose the sweat pants, add some lip gloss and for goodness sake, brush your teeth!

So …. with clean teeth, lip gloss in hand, a pretty dress (no sweat pants!) , date nights ( lots of cuddling) and some ‘me time’  I can do this, right?

Tips for the working woman: breastfeeding

workBreastfeedingModel and mother Gisele Bündchen recently sparked controversy when she tweeted a photo of herself breastfeeding while at work. Moms face a difficult time juggling a new baby and a career, but it CAN be done! We give you some great EASY TIPS for breastfeeding while still working! Continue reading