General Tips on Supporting NICU Families

From a glance, the life of a NICU parent juggles many changes and obstacles. From around the clock breast pumping, to the following: financial concerns with their home, hospital, and gas. Transportation, lost of sleep, worries in general, emotion, physical, & spirit concerns with the baby and or babies in the NICU. Not to mention the stress and pressure of their job, returning work, losing work (which means losing money), not enough FMLA time, and possibly other little siblings that needs care in the home as well.

Here's 7 Steps to Help Make Things Easier:

  • Be apart of their support system or create one for them. Find out what the NICU parents need and work with them. Don't argue on what you think is best and try to control their situation. The goal is to help make their journey lite.
  • Let them vent. Crying, fussing, or simply talking is therapeutic. There's so much to take in during their journey. Sometimes 'talking' helps place their emotional needs back into perspectives and they're able to navigate back on track mentally. NICU parents need a shoulder in every emotional way possible. Don't analyze their words, but encourage them.
  • House Sit. Be a house keeper! Offer to clean, fix, put up, wash, etc. NICU parents travels to the hospital constantly; and when the time is finally given, sometimes they're too exhausted to clean.
  • Baby Sit. If they have another child and or children, offer to keep them for a few days. Help the other sibling(s) feel loved and not forgotten too.
  • Be transportation. Offer to be their driver for the week and let them enjoy the trip to the hospital. Or offer gas money.
  • Offer positive outlook. Help make the NICU journey fun by getting them a scrapbook, keepsakes, a camera to capture diaper changing moments, picture frames, etc. Encourage a brighter look of "keep this for when they come home." 
  • Start a library and buy fun baby books! Encourage the parent to make the NICU visit less stressful by reading to their baby at their bedside. They can also read to him/her during kangaroo time as well.

Making A Donation

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