Postpartum Support

Changing Parental Leave Policies

Recently Twitter announced their new parental leave policy. Starting on May 1st, all Twitter employees based in the United States will be eligible for 20 weeks of PAID parental leave! This means guaranteed maternity leave and paternity leave for ALL employees. However, the chances are slim that if you’re working in Iowa you’re also working for Twitter. So what do these changes mean for you? 

Well hopefully it means that brighter days are in your future. You see, Twitter is only the latest in a long line of prominent companies like Facebook, Microsoft, and Netflix who have also introduced new leave polices for parents in the last year.

With the recent announcements, a lot of people are wondering, “Why are these companies changing their policies?” The biggest reason companies cite is they understand the importance of having both parents available at home to care for and raise a new child. By allowing for both partners to take maximum time off there is time for the family to bond as a whole and for both parents to put time, effort, and work in to raising this new human. The time parents are able to spend with their children greatly impacts the development of the parent/child relationship, the health of the child, and the bond of the family and the parenting partners.

At this point in time, parental leave policies are largely at the discretion of the employer, often something you work out in your contract. Currently the governmental policies that are in place in the United States are the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) and the Pregnancy Discrimination Act (PDA). FMLA requires that employers give employees up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave from work in order to take care of a family medical event, such as the birth of a child. PDA states that if an employer provides disability insurance to other employees they must also provide disability insurance to a pregnant woman. However, both of these acts are decades old and do not apply to every company or business in the United States. If a company has less than a certain number of employees, they don’t have to provide the benefits of FMLA and PDA.

The lack of progressive parental leave policies in the United States can be associated with many common problems that families have during their postpartum transition.

-Postpartum depression
-Issues with a partner
-Difficulty bonding with baby

These are just a few examples of problems that could be solved if new parents felt more supported in their decision to take an extended period of time away from work to bond with their new baby and get acclimated to their new 'normal'.

If you are looking for more support during your postpartum transition consider hiring a postpartum doula. All of our doulas will provide your family with unbiased, judgment-free support as your family adjusts during your baby’s first year of life. For more information about postpartum services check out our website or contact Iowa’s premier full service doula agency for more information.

Authored by: Victoria Cartland
Edited by: Kaity Klotzbach

Fuller House - Building Your Village

“It takes a village to raise a child.” It’s an adage we’ve all heard before, but what does it look like in our modern society?

  • Single mothers living or working together, helping each other with childcare and everything else that parenthood encompasses
  • Single parent moving in with their parent(s) to have a more stable environment
  • Moving into the same neighborhood as family to ensure you'll have backup when needed
  • Calling on everyone from family, neighbors, friends, and coworkers for support
  • Hiring a professional postpartum doula

Fuller House was recently released on Netflix and follows the story of DJ Tanner as she navigates being a recently widowed single mother. It is clear to viewers that DJ is nervous about what her life will look like when her family all returns to their regular lives, leaving her alone as a single mother of three young boys. While toasting to family at the going away party DJ realizes that in the morning everyone will be gone. She goes on to say, “But we’ll be fine; there are lots of single moms. I can do this. I just want you all to know I love you so much.”

Feeling Overwhelmed

As DJ’s family prepares to leave her youngest son, Tommy, gets an ear infection. When family members offer to help, DJ says, “No, this is my responsibility.” As she rushes off to take care of her baby her father asks if she’s okay. DJ replies, “Yes, I’m fine! Why does everyone keep asking me that? I have to get to Tommy!” As her family stands in the kitchen, they can hear Tommy crying on the monitor and DJ trying to comfort him. This scene was heartbreaking for me; I cried as DJ said “It’s okay Tommy, Mommy’s here. I’m sorry but I’m having a tough day too. It’s just everyone’s leaving and for the first time we’re going to be all on our own. It’s okay, I know. I just don’t know if I can deal with all of this. I just hope I can give you the beautiful life you deserve.”

Family Steps Up

When DJ comes back downstairs she is surprised to find her family and best friend still in the house. When she asks why people haven’t left yet her father, her aunt, and her uncle all say they’re going to stay and help her. Finally, her sister Stephanie steps in to say, “You guys, sit down, we’re going to have a little talk… You guys did your share for us. Now it’s time for me to step up…I am clearing my schedule and I am moving in with my sister…” Looking at DJ she says, “You are entirely too stubborn to ask anyone for help! You do everything for everyone else. You need me right now.” Finally DJ responds and says, “The truth is I have been so scared about how to make this work by myself. I love you guys so much.”

How can I get that?

Not everyone has family and friends that live close enough to step in to help. Even if your family does live close by it doesn’t mean they are in the position to do what Stephanie and Kimmy did for DJ. It is possible you have the fantastic support of family to help out after baby arrives, but that typically only lasts for a short time.

So how can you get the support DJ has? You can hire Northeast Iowa Doulas for all your postpartum care needs! Our professional postpartum doulas can meet every need your family has. We offer anywhere from daytime shifts, overnight care, all the way up to 24-hour live-in care. With each of these services we tailor the work we do to provide support where it is most needed and desired.

When hiring Northeast Iowa Doulas for your overnight care needs, you can be sure that everyone in your house will receive a full night of sleep. This will help ensure you will be well-rested and ready to care for the baby the next day. No more ‘mombies’! Even if you are planning to breastfeed; your postpartum doula will bring baby to you when it’s time to nurse and then take care of baby’s other needs so you can go right back to sleep. Sounds amazing, right?

Cooking, light housework, sibling care, validation in your parenting choices, a full night’s sleep; the possibilities are endless. All of our doulas will provide your family with unbiased, judgment-free support as your family finds its groove. This means we provide 100% unconditional support for all parenting choices. This is your baby and only you and your partner know what's best. Our job is to help you find a parenting style you like and become confident in it.

For more information about postpartum services click here or contact us today for more information. We look forward to hearing from you!

Authored by: Victoria Cartland
Edited by: Kaity Klotzbach

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