**NOTE: This post is not mean to scare new mommies or women who are thinking about, someday, becoming mommies. This post is meant to educate not only women, but also men. It’s important that even men know what a woman has to do to take care of herself after giving birth.**
Recently, there was a commercial that circulated the internet regarding postpartum care for women. It was created by a company called Frida. This company sells products to help moms with babies and with themselves – FridaBaby & FridaMom, respectively. The idea behind this commercial was to educate the public about what women have to do to take care of themselves after giving birth. You can watch the commercial below.
Why do I mention this commercial? It was rejected by the Oscars. They didn’t want this commercial to air during their time slot on ABC. But why? Because it was ‘too graphic’. TOO GRAPHIC?! Let that sink in for a second.
That breaks my heart. So many women have to go through this on a day-to-day basis and so many of them have no idea what’s coming after having their babies. They’re uneducated. According to the NY Times, “The rejected Frida spot has been viewed over 3.7 million times online, but that is still far less than the 18 million women it would have reached during the Oscars.” How sad is that? That the everyday life of a new mom is ‘too graphic’, but they’ll show a “commercial for ‘The Bachelor’ there were like 20 women’s hands crawling over a naked man’s body toward his genitals…” (NY Times).
Let me show you what new moms go home with.
[Photo courtesy of Momista Beginnings]
- GIANT mesh underwear because you can’t wear your own. Anything else would probably be too tight and too uncomfortable.
- GIANT pads to sit in the GIANT mesh underwear because the amount of blood that comes out of a woman is almost unbelievable. These start somewhere around the bellybutton and end somewhere around the lower back. Yes, they’re that long!
- Extra pads that sit on the GIANT pad because there needs to be extra support, just in case. [I didn’t need these, but a lot of women do.]
- SUPER THICK overnight pads because…blood. All the blood. I wore these for probably 2 weeks after coming home. They aren’t comfortable.
[Photo courtesy of Momista Beginnings]
- Hemorrhoidal Hygiene Pads. I received another brand of pads pre-moistened with witch hazel. These are used to help with pain and swelling because pushing a baby out means putting part of your body in so much pain that going to the bathroom has you in tears. Thankfully, I did not have a lot of issues with this, but a lot of women do.
- Cleaning bottle or a peri bottle. Wiping after you pee isn’t an option after giving birth because of stitches and swelling. So, in comes the peri bottle. This gets filled with warm/hot water and is used to wash down the area from front to back and then toilet paper can be used to dab/pat the area dry.
- Breast pads. These are placed inside the bra to help prevent leaking breastmilk from getting onto your clothes. Yes, that’s a thing.
- Medela Tender Care Lanolin. All this is is a nipple cream because nipples become sore and chapped. This stuff is magic! Also, Medela is my favorite brand of everything!
- Dermoplast. A pain-relieving spray that helps with burning and itching. Because, yes, that is also a thing postpartum. This gets sprayed on the lady bits that are switched and swollen AFTER you’ve patted yourself dry after cleansing.
Do we go home with enough? Oh, and on top of all of that, we go home with a newborn to take care of also. If you know me, you know my story doesn’t go like that. But a lot of moms do go home with newborns and everything listed above for themselves. And if they’re lucky, they have a partner/friend/family member at home that is willing to help them. That can look like them helping with postpartum care or making sure the baby is taken care of.
I was one of the lucky ones. Even though we didn’t get to go home with our baby, Bryan was an essential part of my postpartum care. While in the hospital, when I was in too much pain to move, he would help me stand up, sit down, place pads, pull up mesh underwear, and literally anything else I needed. This photo was before I had Nellie-Anne, but he was right there by my side from the second I was admitted to the second I was discharged.
Ladies & gentlemen, educate yourselves. Don’t go into this blind. I had no idea what to expect and that is solely due to the fact that this is not a topic that is largely discussed, even among mothers. My mom didn’t tell me. Not because she didn’t want to, but because she didn’t think to tell me. My aunt said the same thing. She never would have thought to talk to her daughters about this.
Make this a topic that gets discussed. Get the information out there. Know what to expect, even if it’s nothing like what you read or are told. At least you’ll know.