Becoming a new mom is one of the most challenging and heart-expanding experiences. Of course, you’ll change intensely physically and emotionally. You might feel isolated and alone. Stress, anxiety, and depression can set in. At Evanston Counseling, our therapists hear from new moms that the demands of caring for a newborn with all of the life changes are often overwhelming. We’re here to offer you hope and help. Keep reading to discover the online and in-person support available to you in Evanston. Having support and doing self-care can lead you to thrive in this season of your life.
Common Challenges Faced by New Moms
Perhaps, you’ve heard many new mama horror stories from your friends. Now you know firsthand what they were talking about! You face many stressors as a new mama; the struggle is real.
Here are some common challenges faced by new moms. Which of the following hits you the hardest?
- Sleep deprivation: Newborns need to eat and sleep frequently, which can leave you exhausted as you care for them.
- Lack of time: You feel like there is not enough time for yourself and your loved ones.
- Changes in body image: At lucieslist.com, she describes the changes like this: “Our skin stretches, our hips widen, our bones get bigger, our breasts change density and shape, [and] our feet grow.” You might be feeling the pressure to get your pre-baby body back.
- Postpartum depression: You might cry excessively, have difficulty bonding with your baby, or experience severe anxiety and panic attacks. Postpartum depression is a serious medical condition that affects about 1 in 7 new moms. (Check out our blog here to discover more about postpartum depression.)
You weren’t meant to go through this season of your life alone. Getting support is vital!
Why Do New Moms Like You Need Support?
With all the troubles you can have as a new mom, you need a strong support system. Who can you turn to for advice when the nights with a colicky baby are hard? Or, how do you know if it’s baby blues or postpartum depression? All you want to do is sit on the couch and watch The Good Doctor on Hulu.
Definitely, having people to talk with can make a big difference. “Yes, please,” might be your answer to an offer of understanding and encouragement!
Your emotional safety net can include your partner, therapist, family, friends, and other new moms. They can assure you that life with your baby won’t always be this tough. You might feel set up to thrive despite the fatigue, loneliness and anxiety.
Where can you get support in Evanston and online?
Many support groups are available to you, New Mama. You can stay in your sweats and meet mamas online or head down to Little Beans in Southwest Evanston. Either way, you’ll find your crew. These groups can provide a safe space to share experiences, ask questions, and get advice.
Here are a few support groups where you might find your next new mom BFF. Some of them are close to home in Evanston, in the Chicagoland area or online.
- Chicago New Moms Group
This group focuses on moms and their babies from birth to six months. In this professionally led group, you’ll receive expert guidance with peer support from women who will get you and your life as a new mom. They offer “an opportunity to come together to discuss the ups and downs of being a brand new, first time mother in a supportive and nurturing environment.”
The Perinatal Family Support Center Postpartum
If you were referred to or delivered your child at NorthShore Evanston Hospital or Highland Park Hospital, the staff at the center are available to help you with the following:
- Medical complications
Pre-term or complicated births
Mental health issues
Online support groups for new parents – The pandemic taught us how important social connection is. Yet, you might not be able to leave your home with your baby to participate in a support group. This link provides dozens of support groups that you can access at home. Medical complications.
Your Saving Grace: Self-Care
In addition to support, you also need to take care of yourself. You know this intuitively! No one needs to convince you to get enough sleep, eat healthy foods, and exercise regularly.
You might just be wondering how you’re going to do all of the things and take care of yourself.
This is where and when having a reliable support group can save your sanity. You’ll feel much better and be much more available to your baby if you are able to find some time to renew and refresh.
Tips for new moms who are feeling the stress and anxiety that new-mom life can bring
- Set realistic expectations. Don’t expect to be able to do everything perfectly. It’s okay to ask for help.
- Take breaks when you need them. Even if it’s just for a few minutes, take some time for yourself each day to relax and recharge.
- Delegate tasks. Don’t be afraid to ask your partner, family, or friends to help out with things like cooking, cleaning, or running errands.
- Don’t be afraid to say no. It’s okay to say no to invitations or requests if you’re feeling overwhelmed.
- Take care of your physical and mental health. This means eating as healthy as possible, getting quality sleep and sneaking in movement regularly.
- Squeeze in time for activities that you enjoy. This will help you to relax and de-stress.
If you want to exercise with other new mamas, you might try out a class at Fit4Mom. They have several locations in Evanston at Little Beans café, Elliott Park, Temperance Beer, and Quad Indoor Sports. During their Stroller Rides class, you can do strength, cardio, and core while you engage with your child!
Little Beans Café also offers a recurring new moms meetup. You can sip your pumpkin-spiced latté, share new mom tips and hacks, and build a support network.
Do you know the benefits of post-pregnancy massage? At Bodyworks by Carla in Evanston, she lists the benefits of postpartum massage:
- pain relief
- hormone regulation
- decreased swelling
- better sleep
- improved lactation when breastfeeding
You might add massage to your self-care practice.
Why Do You Need Self-care?
Self-care can help to reduce stress, improve mood, and boost energy levels. Practicing self-care will help you reconnect with the woman you were before giving birth. You know, the one who loved to run, rollerblade, or cycle along the lake in Evanston.
We’re here at Evanston Counseling to Support You with the Stress of Being a New Mom
Having a baby at home is stressful. There are lots of resources online and In-Person to support new moms but sometimes these resources aren’t enough.Our therapists in Evanston know the struggle is real. Reach out to us at Evanston Counseling if you’d like someone to walk through new mom life with you. You don’t have to face the challenges alone.
Reach out to us today. If you’re feeling anxious and stressed about being a new mom, call us at (773) 983-8444 for a free, 15-minute phone conversation with one of our Evanston Therapists. We will listen and direct you to the right person to help you with the new mom overwhelm. Follow the steps below to get started:
- Reach out for a free 15-minute consultation.
- Speak with an experienced therapist.
- Relax and Enjoy being a mom
Other Therapy Services Offered at Evanston Counseling in Evanston, IL
Are you looking for therapy for stress, anxiety, life transitions, or relationships? At Evanston Counseling, we understand that you may be struggling with more than just motherhood. We specialize in Therapy for Anxiety, Couples Therapy, Therapy for Moms, and Therapy for Depression. To learn more about our therapeutic approaches or our skilled therapists at Evanston Counseling, read our FAQs, and check out our Blogs! We look forward to meeting you.