A friend just told you they’re pregnant. What’s the first thing to do? Baby gifts are adorable and we can’t deny the cuteness of an itty-bitty onesie even though fast-growing babies will probably get little use out of it. If you want to really nurture the new parents in your life, choose gifts that ease the postpartum period.
Instead of onesies, buy a soft skin-to-skin wrap. Skin-to-skin contact can decrease postpartum depression, increase lactation and promote bonding. A soft wrap for the new parent to wear at home in lieu of a shirt will maximize skin-to-skin time — no onesie needed.
Instead of nipple cream, buy a prenatal lactation class. Nipple cream is great, but prevention is better. Equip expectant parents with the knowledge of how to achieve a proper latch.
Instead of bottles, buy a tiny baby cup. Many parents don’t know that babies are able to drink out of cups. For parents who want to breast/chestfeed, using a cup instead of a bottle can strengthen the lactation relationship and latching skills.
Some of the best gifts are homemade and/or service-related. Make a batch of freezer meals or DIY padsicles for soothing postpartum recovery, or pitch in with friends to pay for a birth and postpartum doula.
Most of all, give the gift of time by being there for your friend with text check-ins, meal delivery and a supportive presence.
Visit our new Perinatal Lounge at 56 East 15th Avenue in Eugene.
Emily Little (she/her), PhD, is a perinatal health researcher, educator, and advocate. She is the founder and executive director of Nurturely, a nonprofit promoting equity in perinatal wellness and strengthening cultures of support for infants and caregivers.
nurturely.org / firstname.lastname@example.org
Text/phone: 541-579-8941 / Whatsapp: 541-579-8941