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  • Laura

Stress and the First Year of Parenthood

Updated: Nov 3, 2021


The first year of parenthood is a memorable time. You’re getting to know your baby and becoming acclimated to your role as a parent. You learn how to feed your baby, how to clothe them, and bathe them. You regularly check in with your local health visitor to chart your baby’s growth and look out for every new milestone. It is truly an incredible period of growth for both you and your baby.


However, there is also a great deal of stress associated with new parenthood.


You often have to toss aside your pre-conceived notions as you actually experience parenthood. You may be stressed out by the endless nappies and mounting piles of laundry…by the constant feedings…and by your newborn’s continual crying. At times, you may even wonder whether you’re really cut out for the responsibility you suddenly now have.


The important thing to remember is that every new parent feels stress. It comes hand-in-hand as part of the job. And the stress will continue once your child is in school, once your child becomes a teenager, and if your child starts college, university and employment. In essence, the moment your baby is born begins a lifetime of stress for parents.


How can you best combat new baby-stress?


Recognition

Recognizing the amount of stress you’re under is an important first step. Many new parents become frustrated and irritable, never realizing that they are simply reacting to stress. Given the fact that new parents often get little sleep, the stress can be easily compounded.