Post # 1
I work in a small office (<10 person) office and the only collegue close to my age just found out she is pregnant. She has been married for a few years, and she and her husband both have good, stable jobs, but the pregnancy…wasn’t planned.
My poor coworker is freaking out. She just moved to my city, so she doesn’t have many (if any, really) friends. Both her parents and his parents live in Asia and are ageing, so travel is hard. They live in a small, one bedroom apartment, and her husband is not traditional enough that he thinks she should give up her career to riase her family, but he is tradtional enough to view child-rearing as primarily the mother’s responsibility. In short, she is getting really overwhelmed with the whole prospect of motherhood (She didn’t even know about American maternity laws and was planning to only be out for 2 weeks)
I was wondering if anyone knew of any good rescources to help someone in this situation.
I don’t know much about parenthood or child rearing, but my heart is breaking for her, and I have been trying to figure out how to help her. Any advice?
Post # 4
Oh, wow, that’s tough (and unfortunate about the expectations being placed on her). Do you know if she’s a member of a church or religious group? Perhaps the ladies aid group or a mentor type couple would be willing to help her.
I’m not a parent either, so I don’t know all of the great resources, so I hope other bees chime in. There are probably organizations that would be happy to help with prenatal type instruction and even shelters may have people who can help inform her about pregnancy laws and resources. I’m not saying she needs a shelter (or to find a religion), just that those are two common sources of assistance.
Post # 5
I’ll bump for you 🙂 I’m clueless about this too, but I think getting her to meet other moms through some pregnant women’s group is likely good to help her destress and take it day by day. (And maybe a slap to dad to wake up! That’s actually worse attitude in some ways, expecting her to pick up most of the childrearing, at least if she stayed home she’d have only one “job.”) I think she has time to deal with that aspect, however, and it’s likely not something a coworker can do anything about besides listening to her.
Post # 6
@kay01:I was thinking about trying to throw a small baby shower for her when the time came because I don’t think she has anyone else to do it for her (and I want to).
She is not religious, so she does not belong to any church support group.
I was hoping there would be a “child rearing for dummies” or “how to not suck at being a parent” class that may help. :-/
Post # 7
@MissHobbit: Ooh, well, I do know a good friend and her hubs took a good # of classes at the hospital. There was “Baby Bootcamp for Dads,” “Newborn CPR/First aid,” and even some classes on prepping bottles, swaddling, etc. Maybe that would be the best resource for that type of thing (though I love the titles of your classes, haha).
Post # 8
I’m a therapist, so I’m coming at it from a slightly-biased angle, but maybe they could contact a family/marriage therapist who could help talk them through some of the issues? Kind of like pre-marital counseling — prenatal counseling, I guess.
(As a therapist, I *love* it when people or couples come in to pre-emptively work through potential issues, rather than waiting until huge problems have already developed.)
Where I live, there’s also an organization that calls itself “pregnancy and parenting support” that helps with counseling, practical support, support groups, etc. for pregnant women and new parents. Maybe google that phrase with your town/city name and see if anything turns up? (Just watch out for “pregnancy crisis centers” and other deceptively-named anti-abortion organizations.)
Post # 9
It’s a little early for this, but I would suggest signing up for mommy to be yoga classes or swim classes or natural birthing classes like brio or something. I think that’d be a good way for her to connect with other future mothers in your area.
And there are tons of parenting books out there that could be of help. There’s the whole “What to expect” series, there’s “You! Having a baby”, and the only I have personally read cover to cover (before TTC nonetheless) “Parents for the first time”.
Post # 10
I think one of the easiest ways to get her feet wet is to get her to either join or lurk on other online communities with more of a pregnancy/parenting focus like hellobee.com or thebump.com. the first thing she will find out is that she is not alone and her situation is not unique, lots of people are goingthrough what she is and there are many shoulders to lean on.
It is still early days, so there is plenty of time for her husband to wake up and face reality. Especially as they live in a 1-brd apt, he won’t be anle to maintain that attitude for very long if he wants a peaceful life. You should definitely have her look into both the maternity policy at your work and she should double check her insurance and find out what is covered and what isn’t.
Post # 11
@occhiblu: I was about to suggest some sort of counseling. There’s a lot of situations that need to be discussed before the baby gets here, especially around how the child will be raised, that having an impartial third party in the room might help.
Post # 12
Yesterday on hellobee, Mrs. Bee posted about looking for a nanny and linked to this site where you can find your neighborhood parenting listserv…not sure if there is one for your area, but I found a Dallas one that seems like a good resource for local parents. I hope it helps! http://www.babble.com/baby/baby-care/best-listserv-parent-networks/