In those final weeks of pregnancy, it feels like the whole world is on pins and needles, just waiting to rush in and meet your baby as soon as they arrive. 

But what if that's not what you want? 

What if, instead, you're yearning for some quiet, private time with your newborn? It's okay to want that, and it's okay to say 'no' to visitors. 

After the birth of my son, I made a little info sheet of sorts letting visitors know what it was that I wanted and needed. I was a first time mom and wasn’t sure what to do or expect. But I know I needed some help in one capacity or another.

In this blog post, we'll dive into why it's important to prioritize your needs, how to set loving boundaries, and what alternatives you can offer to your eager friends and family. 

So, you can enjoy those first precious moments with your baby, just the way you want.

It's Okay to Prioritize Your Needs

First off, let's bust the myth: saying 'no' to visitors doesn't make you a bad host or an ungrateful family member. It makes you a mom who's prioritizing her and her baby's needs. 

Remember, this time is about recovery, both physically and emotionally. If you just want your mom or your sister, that’s ok too. 

I can remember a time when a family member came to the house without asking first. I was overwhelmed and then cried after they left (they were literally there for about 5 minutes). I was strung out on my emotions trying to balance themselves out and the next day my husband went back to work.

Health Comes First

With a newborn, health is paramount. Limiting visitors can be a health decision too. Newborns have delicate immune systems, and it's okay to want to minimize exposure to germs. 

Bonding Time is Precious

The early days with your baby are irreplaceable. They're for bonding, understanding each other's cues, and establishing a routine. Honestly, crowding these moments with visitors can disrupt this crucial bonding period. 

It's About Emotional Well-being

Postpartum blues are real, and the last thing you need is the stress of entertaining. Your emotional well-being is just as important as your physical recovery. 

It’s okay to change your mind. Maybe before giving birth you wanted everyone around you…now that baby is here maybe you just want to sit in silence and enjoy the newborn snuggles. THAT’S OKAY TOO. Your postpartum period is crucial to how you navigate motherhood. 

Setting Boundaries is Healthy

Setting boundaries is healthy for all relationships. It's a way to communicate your needs respectfully. Start by having an honest conversation with potential visitors before the baby arrives. Explain that you'll be limiting visitors and why.

Example, “I want to start by saying how grateful we are for all the love and support you've shown our family, especially as we welcome our new baby into the world. Your role in our baby's life is truly cherished, and we appreciate everything you've done and will continue to do as he/she grows up. I'd like to have an open and honest conversation with you about something important. As a new parent, my top priority is ensuring our baby's well-being. I've been learning from friends, our doctor, and our midwife about the significance of those first few days for bonding and breastfeeding which is why we won’t have visitors until baby is X days/weeks old. I want you to know that limiting visitors during this time is not a reflection of my love for you. It's a necessary step for the health and adjustment of our family and we love you so much”  

Don’t be surprised if there is pushback. This is the honest truth and it may or may not happen. In the end, what matters is you, your baby and your family’s well-being.

Offer Alternatives

Let your loved ones know that their support is still valued. Suggest alternative ways they can help, like dropping off meals or running errands. This lets them be involved without overwhelming you. Having freezer meals or someone else offering dinner was helpful during my postpartum periods. 

Don't Forget the Power of Technology

Thank goodness for technology! Suggest video calls as an alternative to in-person visits. This way, everyone gets to see the baby without invading your space. 

You Can Always Change Your Mind

Finally, remember, it's your right to change your mind. If you feel up to visitors sooner or later than expected, that's perfectly fine.

Mom holding baby boy after delivering at Franklin Memorial Hospital in Farmington Maine.
Mom breastfeeding baby boy after delivering at Franklin Memorial Hospital in Farmington Maine.

 I hope reading "Here’s Why More Moms Are Saying “No” To Visitors After Birth" has given you some solid ideas! If you’re still looking for a  Maine Birth Photographer, click here to see my portfolio of birth images.