You will have heard of a honeymoon, but what about a babymoon? A honeymoon is understood to be a time of intimacy and closeness between a bride and groom, and a babymoon is also a time of intimacy and closeness.
It's a time for a mother and baby to get to know each other. Breastfeeding, attachment, and many necessary things occur when a mother takes time out for a babym oon.
The concept of a babymoon is not new, even if the term is. The term "babymoon" has been used to refer to close time between couples before the birth of their child, but generally speaking the term is reserved for those few weeks after birth.
All over the world, various cultures recognize the weeks immediately following birth to be an almost sacred time of rest and solitude for mother and baby. In some parts of the world, new mothers are pampered – fed special foods, given massages, and otherwise treated with care during the postpartum period. There is a reason why this global tradition is being upheld – there are many benefits. Here are some.
Your body has undergone a tremendous series of events. Pregnancy and childbirth, depending on the circumstances and health of the mother, can be draining at best and traumatic at worst. Your body needs time to heal physically, especially in the case of perineal tearing or a C-section. It also needs time to heal emotionally, as your body undergoes enormous hormonal shifts after birth and you adjust to the new routine of baby care.
Western cultures tend to discourage mother-infant bonding. Mothers talk about how little their child needs them and how well he or she goes with a caregiver. But the importance of close bonding should not be diminished. During the babymoon, mother and baby should have lots of skin-to-skin contact and interaction. The close bond that is formed will build a foundation of security that will last for the rest of the baby's life.
An old midwife recommendation was for a new mother not to leave the house for six weeks. More and more we are discovering the wisdom of that caution. During the first six weeks of life, a baby's immune system is still developing. It's a germy world out there, and while exposure does help build immunity, the immune system must be ready before exposure can have any beneficial effect.
The health benefits of breastfeeding are too numerous to list here, but suffice to say that a babymoon encourages the breastfeeding relationship. Mother and baby have time to bond and learn the sometimes challenging art of breastfeeding without the rush of trying to get back to the old routine right away.