You've made many important decisions including choices about a birth plan, child care and health care providers. There's another important decision now that your family is home: choosing a baby sitter.
You and your partner need time alone. It's important for you two to have regular "dates" and enjoy time together that doesn't involve feeding, diapers or laundry.
If you don't have family members nearby who can watch your baby, you can still find a babysitter.
No one should ever hold a baby while feeling angry, frustrated or upset. Make sure your sitter knows about and understands shaken baby syndrome. Stress the importance that he or she take time to relax and calm down before caring for your baby.
Ask friends, neighbors, co-workers, teachers, clergy or other adults you trust for recommendations. Remember, a baby sitter doesn't have to be a teenage girl. You may want to consider searching senior centers or colleges for capable or qualified sitters.
Once you find a candidate or two, there are some important details to share and questions to ask.
Regular dates with your partner can help regain your intimacy and keep you connected as a couple. Your baby may also enjoy a new voice and face for a couple of hours.
Once you are ready to go out, be sure to leave your sitter detailed information about:
Have your sitter call or text you if your baby cannot be soothed.
Allina Health's Patient Education Department, Guide for the Care of Children: Ages Birth to 5 Years Old, fifth edition. To avoid awkward sentences, instead of referring to your child as "he/she" or "him/her," this guide will alternate between "he" or she" and "him" or "her."
Allina Health's Patient Education Department experts, including the Pediatric Department of Allina Health Coon Rapids Clinic