New Parenthood


New parenthood is a particularly intense time. Indeed, there is much written about this period, and yet again we see the same trend as with literature on parenthood elsewhere: It focuses on the needs of the baby, rather than the experience of the new parents.

One of the many unintended effects of this neglect in perspective is a lack of awareness about what it does to new parents to lose a baby or to experience medical problems for mother and/or baby during pregnancy, birth, or postnatally. Such perinatal complications and loss are an under-explored phenomenon, and these experiences get lost behind a host of assumptions. For example, that once mother and/or baby have physically recovered, the rest will take care of itself, when in fact early complications can create lasting distress and dysregulation for mother and baby alike, for months and years to come. Or the assumption that, if a baby is lost, there is no more parenthood. Nothing could be further from the truth.

Equally, the first helpers–midwives, nurses, ‘kraamzorg’ and others, often underestimate the enormous psychological importance they have for new mothers and fathers.

New Parent groups for couples

One of the issues that barely gets any attention in pre-natal classes and baby playgroups is the enormous toll that becoming parents takes on a couple relationship. Research suggests that stress in the relationship rises by a factor of nine. This is not surprising considering that both members of the couple are dealing with a major new challenge that stirs up all kinds of needs and anxieties, and neither party is getting enough sleep or having enough time to process or make sense of it all.

New Parent groups for couples help to strengthen and prepare your relationship before the baby is born, and to manage better in the weeks and months afterwards. Unlike other pre-natal classes, this group does not end with the birth, but continues after it.

For more information or if you are interested in taking part in this group, which meets for eight sessions over a period of months before and after the birth of their children, please get in touch via the contact form on the site, or via email.