Congratulations! It is probably safe to assume that you stumbled upon this article because you either just had your baby or will be giving birth soon! While this is such an exciting and happy time, it can often be stressful trying to handle visitors after birth. Don’t worry though, this article will tell you exactly how to handle the mob of people who just can’t wait to visit and get their hands on your little one!
Looking for more postpartum tips? Check out my postpartum survival guide for everything you need to know (including the things no one else wants to talk about)!
A new baby is just so exciting that everyone close to you will just be jumping at any opportunity to visit you after you give birth. This constant flow of visitors can be so stressful or even impede your bonding time with your baby postpartum.
So don’t feel guilty for wanting to limit visitors or set some ground rules for visits. I’m going to share all my tips with you on how to handle this situation without hurting anyone’s feelings!
Tips for handling visitors after birth
Here are all my best tips for handling visitors after birth that will allow all of you to enjoy time together and protect that special bonding time between you and your baby.
1. You are in charge
First and foremost, know that you are in charge.
I don’t care who wants to visit you – inlaws, parents, grandparents, friends, etc., you are in charge.
You are the one that just birthed a baby. You are the one who is sore, tired and recovering. You finally just got to meet your sweet baby after growing and nurturing them for several long months.
This means that you get to be the boss. You get to decide who visits and when. If that means no one then great. If it means everyone, that is okay too.
Just know that you are in charge here! No matter what you decide, do not feel guilty and take whatever length of time you need to heal and spend time with your baby.
These moments after birth are so special so soak them all in mama.
2. Plan out visitors before having your baby
Talk with your significant other and determine what both of your views on visitors are after birth. If you do this before having your baby, it will save a lot of stress once baby arrives because you already thought it through and know what you each expect.
Already had your baby? That’s okay, just try and get on the same page now so you can handle the visitors as a team!
Some things that are important to consider and discuss are:
- Do you want visitors at the hospital/ birthing center? How many?
- Are there policies of the facility that impact visitors?
- Do you want visitors in your home once you return? How many?
- If you are waiting for visitors, when do you think you will allow them in your home?
- Who will you be allowing to visit first?
- Is there anyone you don’t want to visit?
- Would you like any restrictions on number of visitors at a time?
- Do you want to limit the length of each visit?
3. Set the ground Rules
After you get on the same page with your significant other, it is time to let everyone else in on the ground rules.
It is so much easier to let everyone know your expectations and wishes before baby arrives. This will save you the stress of turning someone away when they show up at the hospital or your house unexpectedly. Even if the conversation is a little awkward it will be worth it to save the stress of visitors just showing up once you give birth.
4. Learn how to say no
Even though you spoke with your spouse, made the perfect plan for visitors after birth and shared it with everyone, there still may be visitors that don’t listen! A new baby has everyone so excited and sometimes they think bending the rules is okay.
Another scenario might be that you didn’t really think about visitors after giving birth. Now that your new one is here, you need to break the news but don’t want to hurt anyones feelings.
Don’t worry it can be done.
The Nice Way To Say “No” To Visitors After Birth
Honesty is the best policy here. Beating around the bush could leave you stressed out with people still visiting. And let’s not forget you are the one in charge here, so just be honest.
I simply told my family that I wasn’t ready for visitors. I was sore, tired and recovering from a 31 hour labor and just wanted to bond as a new family of 3! I simply said I would let everyone know as soon as I was ready. Everyone respected my wishes and I kept my promise.
Check out my 31 hour birth story to hear all about my failed hotel delivery (yes I said hotel, and no it wasn’t a typo).
How to deal with visitors that make you feel guilty for saying “No”
There is always that one person that doesn’t get it and tries to get you to change your mind.
My only advice here is to stick to your guns. You are in charge. This will be the first of many times you have to consider what is best for you and your family. Start by setting precedence now.
5. Set up security
No not real security, although depending on your family and friends, maybe that would come in handy too!
All joking aside, having someone who knows your wishes and doesn’t mind playing middle man is a HUGE help in those first few hours to days after giving birth. This well let you stay focused on what is truly important at this time – your recovery and bonding with your baby.
This person can be your spouse, parent, in-law, friend, etc. Anyone who can help with things like birth announcement, pictures or updates, and even managing your visitors.
6. Prepare for the in-law’s visit after birth
Visits from your in-laws can be challenging on a normal day for some, but throw a newborn into the mix and it can really get ramped up. Things like different views on parenting, baby care, religion, etc. Can all make for sensitive topics once your baby arrives.
If you are concerned about any issues arising, it is best to discuss your concerns with your spouse. Express your concerns and let them run interference when the visit does happen. Also, refer to tip #1 if you are ever in doubt!
7. Enforce Rules
So before you had your baby, you set the ground rules and shared them with everyone right? Well after giving birth is the time to enforce the rules for your visitors.
If you want to limit the number of visitors at a time or the length of the time of a visit, do it, and don’t feel bad!
8. You don’t need to entertain your visitors after birth
This was a concept I had such a huge time wrapping my head around. Having people over and not feeding them or providing some form of entertainment was a foreign concept to me. Don’t be surprised if you feel the same.
As hard as it is, keep in mind that your only job after birth is to take care of yourself and your baby. You are both learning about each other and this is your main priority.
Taking care of a newborn is also challenging and so confusing as a first time mom. My newborn care guide will tell you everything you need to know to survive your first week home with your newborn!
Any one who is visiting you should have the mentality that they are there to help you out, not the other way around. So ask for help if you need it, trust me they will be more than happy to do whatever they can while they are there.
9. Don’t worry about what you or your house looks like
Birthing a baby is a long beautiful experience. Recovery is painful. Not sleeping is exhausting. Breastfeeding is challenging. Being a mom to a little baby is wonderful and worth everything.
But let’s face it, you have your hands full. You don’t need to have everything else together for your visitors after birth.
Embrace your diaper, milk stained shirt and messy house. You will get it together (somewhat) eventually, but these things are not important after birth. In fact, let your visitors help out around the house while they are there if you feel comfortable with it!
10. Enjoy yourself
Enjoy all the moments. I know everyone says it but the newborn stage goes by in a blink of the eye. I didn’t believe it, but it is totally true.
Take in everything you can with your little one. And no, you can’t take too many pictures. Cheerish the alone time and the visit and support from family and friends.
No matter what, don’t feel guilty.
You are in charge.
So you do you mama. And remember, with a little planning you can have the alone time you need with your baby and celebrate with your visitors after birth when you are ready.
Do you have any tips to handle visitors after birth? I would love to hear from you in the comments below!