The Lessons New Parents Must Learn On the Job…and Quickly


Bilal Sajjad



The Lessons New Parents Must Learn On the Job…and Quickly

Having a baby is an experience that involves lots of work. Before the birth, you have to get all the things you need for her care. That may include significant renovation at the house. You’ll also be choosing a pediatrician, selecting a name, and going to ever-more-frequent doctor visits.

After delivery, the chore list gets even longer. You’ll have to get a sleep routine set (or rather, come into compliance with the baby’s sleep routine). There will be lots of visitors, trips to the store for diapers, and long nights of rocking a fussy little one.

During all this activity, there will be a lot of things you’ll have to know, and you’ll have no time to learn them on your own. In addition, some of those lessons are too important and too pressing to learn through trial and error.

Think about some of these parenting essentials that are best learned from others rather than with experimentation.

Safety Is Complicated

You only get one chance to do some things correctly. One mistake can cause irreversible harm.

Babies are often at their most vulnerable in the crib, so it is essential that you understand right away how your baby should be put to bed.

As much fun as it is to load the baby bed with stuffed animal friends, they are dangerous for babies. Remember that the tiniest babies can’t push away things that interfere with their breathing, so clear the stuffed animals at bedtime. Choose a crib mattress that is properly designed for use with babies. It should fit the crib correctly and meet safety standards.

Nutrition Is Tricky

From just moments after birth, babies are hungry. And they seem to stay that way until they are about 18 years old. Making their feedings successful isn’t just about having a bottle ready every time they cry, though. The process is complicated, starting with the choice between breastfeeding and formula. Next is the possibility of a transition from mother’s milk to formula, and then the onset of dairy products and solid food.

Along the way, many problems can develop. Some babies are allergic to cow’s milk, and others get stomach problems from it. Parents need to be aware that every baby will have an ideal formula, and they should work with the baby’s pediatrician to identify that ideal product quickly. Sidebar: once you know what it is, you should review several different stores to be sure that you can source it quickly.

Little Things Matter

It is surprising how some of the small things associated with raising a child can make such a difference. A good example is detergent. Some parents mistakenly assume that they can wash the baby’s clothing in the washer with their own garments, using their own detergent.

But babies have incredibly sensitive skin, and they are susceptible to a wide range of problems that can include irritation from outside factors like laundry detergent. Invest in the baby detergent. It is worth it.

Sometimes it’s literally small things that matter. Understand how dangerous it is to allow your child to handle things that are small enough to choke them (or that can break off into pieces small enough to choke them).

Raising a child is an incredibly complicated and stressful experience. There are some lessons we all learn with midnight diaper leaks and loose bottle lids. They give us to chance laugh with other parents and to tease our children about what they’ve put us through. But others are too important, too life-changing, to be left to the random chances of trial and error. As you prepare your home and your heart for a new child, be sure to prepare your mind as well.


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  1. These safety issues are certainly things a new parent should pay attention to. Especially as new information is made available. Thanks for the post.

  2. Amber Ludwig says:

    OH learning on the job! The first thing every parent learns lol!! I remember coming home from the hospital with my son and bawling because I had no idea what to do with him lol!! Hubby thought it was hilaious but I was panicked! Where do I put him? What does he need? Omgosh Im responsible for him!? All very scary!

  3. Linda Manns Linneman says:

    Oh what we learn as we raise our children. It can be a tough job at times but what a blessing these little ones are. Thank you so much for sharing. God Bless

  4. Things now (in my opinion) are so much easier. Before the internet, you had only family or friends if you were lucky to get some advice. Now, there are groups and it is much easier. Babies dont come with manuals as they say!