After you have just given birth everything feels extremely surreal. It’s never quite how you expect it to be.
As you lie in bed looking at your new baby you’ll be replaying your labor back in your mind and thinking how magical it was – even if it was perhaps painful.
Your baby is so precious to you, you almost want to lock in these moments and keep time still just so that you can make sure you take it all in.
Then you get a knock at the door and you have a line of visitors waiting to see your new baby.
Visitors after birth? Yay or nay?
Its the one thing that can either make you feel excited or totally stress you out.
Before your baby arrives you may have thought that the more visitors you have the merrier. However, once you deliver your baby you may not feel that way anymore.
So what do you do?
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When I was pregnant with my first child I thought that I would want all of my friends to come and see my baby. It didn’t even occur to me that I might not feel that way once he was actually born.
Thankfully no one came to the hospital as my first birth was extremely long and I ended up staying overnight.
I’m so grateful that it worked out that way because once I saw my son I just needed time alone with him. Even my husband had to leave after a few hours because I was in an open ward.
I remember having so many emotions at the time. I wanted him to stay but I needed him to leave all at the same time. I needed to bond with my baby in a way that no one else could. Yes, husbands are special too but I needed some time alone just to think and look at my new baby.
So much had happened in those last few hours that I needed time to digest things without having to talk. It was an extremely special moment that needed to be between me and my baby.
I don’t think I did much sleeping that night but I felt wonderful. I was so excited to get home but really wasn’t ready to see anyone.
The last thing I needed was a bunch of visitors waiting at my doorstep. I felt like a hot mess, my body had just been through a very unusual experience and I needed some time to adjust to a new life especially as this was my first baby.
I didn’t really have much control over visitors with my first baby but for my subsequent children, I had no problem laying down some rules for after I had given birth.
Here are some helpful tips that I found to help to deal with visitors after birth.
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8 Tips For Dealing With Visitors After Birth
1. Make Your Intentions To Friends And Family Very Clear
Tell people early on what you do and do not want to happen after you have delivered your baby.
If you don’t want any visitors on the first day say so. Let it be known that it is a rule for everyone and that way no one should feel rejected by your decision.
If you find it difficult to be vocal to friends and family about your wishes after birth and make sure that you mention serval times in passing. Say that you can’t wait to have a few days to yourself after giving birth if that’s what you want.
If you don’t mind having visitors after birth then let people know the best time to visit and exactly what you do and do not want to happen.
2. If You Don’t Mind Visitors Make Sure Those People Know Who They Are
It’s a very wise decision if you don’t mind a few visitors to let those people know who they are in advance.
You may not want the owner of your local corner shop to turn up to your house the day after you have just given birth.
You can let a select few people know when they are welcome to come and see the baby and that’s it.
Never feel under pressure to have an open-door policy on visiting you and your new baby.
People will always get offended and you can’t control that but right now you need to put your new family first and if that can’t include everyone don’t feel bad about it.
After you have given birth is a special time and a time that you can never get back again. Take full advantage of it and do things to suit you.
3. Decide If You Want Visitors At The Hospital Or Not
Make a decision as to whether you want visitors at the hospital or not.
Having visitors at the hospital might seem like it would be too much but in actual fact, it’s a great way to control the crowd so to speak.
The hospital will have specific visiting hours so you will know exactly how long a person can stay.
Also having visitors at the hospital will mean that you don’t need to worry about the state of your house and other such pressures.
Allowing a few visitors at the hospital can actually be an advantage. You can let people know that once you get home you need a few days to yourself before anyone else comes to visit.
This is a perfect solution for people to be able to say they have seen the baby and get that out of their system and so that you can get some time to yourself once you get home.
4. Have Visiting Hours
If you are allowing visitors at home then don’t be afraid to set visiting hours. There is nothing wrong with that.
You will have a lot to be getting used to and the last thing you need is someone to turn up at 9 am before you have even had a chance to get out of bed.
You may be dealing with sleep deprivation and had a really bad night’s sleep so the morning is where you can have a lie-in to catch up on some rest.
You may also start to wind down early in the evenings to make sure you can get some extra sleep. You again don’t want visitors at that time.
Set visiting hours that work in your favor.
5. Make Sure Visitors Help Out
If you have visitors coming to see you at home after you have just given birth then they should be close enough to you to be able to help you out around the house as well.
For me personally if you are coming to visit me at such a sensitive time then I should be able to get you to help with housework too.
Let visitors help with the washing up or giving your room a quick hoover, even putting the washing machine on or taking older children out for fresh air.
You’ll be surprised how much these little things can help you out.
6. Resist The Urge To Entertain
One of the biggest mistakes I see people make after giving birth is trying to entertain.
That is just not going to work. Unless your visitors are like family where you can leave them and go to bed if you need to there should be no need for you to entertain anyone.
Don’t feel obliged to have drinks and snacks for people when they come over.
If someone tells you they are coming over make sure they are bringing something with them. If it’s not dinner then they should bring snacks or drinks for that time.
You won’t be able to go grocery shopping as feely as you did before so this will take the pressure off you.
7. Have A No-Access Area
This has always been a must for me. Even if I do allow visitors I need to have an area where no one else can access that I can be alone if I need to.
There were a few moments for me after giving birth where I just needed to take a moment and be alone. Sometimes I needed to cry (for no particular reason) and sometimes I just needed peace and quiet.
Remember you still have a range of hormones flowing through you. Just because you have delivered your baby you still need to get through the postpartum period.
Having a no-access area is a must. Usually, that can be your bedroom or a room in your house that no one else is allowed into.
8. Don’t Be Afraid To Tell A Visitor You’re Tired And They Need To Leave
This is really important, you need to be able to speak up and tell people when you are tired and they need to leave.
If you can’t do this yourself then make sure your husband is aware and let him speak for you.
You can even have a little signal between the two of you that means its time for visitors to leave.
I know I’ve done this on occasion and it was so needed.
Unfortunately, not everyone knows when it is time to leave so you have to be ready to tell them.
Final Thoughts On Having Visitors After Birth
Deciding if you want visitors after birth can be tricky because you can never know for sure what you will feel like.
No matter what you decide on doing just know that you can change your mind at any time. Don’t be afraid to give rules and restrictions to your visitors.
Doing this will make life for you that much easier so you can enjoy this special time with your baby.