0-1 YEAR OLD The de­mands of par­ent­ing can be over­whelm­ing. Learn how you can keep a han­dle on your emo­tions.

You love your baby but, some­times, even the lit­tlest things can leave you seething with rage. DR RICHARD C. WOOLF­SON sin­gles out ways to keep a han­dle on your emo­tions.

Young Parents (Singapore) - - C Ntents -

You are ex­hausted, but Baby just won’t sleep. You feel you might even doze off while on your feet.

Re­mem­ber, los­ing your tem­per will sim­ply make you and Baby more ag­i­tated – and both of you will be less likely to sleep. In­stead, calmly work through a list of prac­ti­cal strate­gies to soothe your cry­ing new­born.

These can in­clude gen­tly rock­ing him in your arms, play­ing soft back­ground mu­sic or singing a lul­laby. You can also try tak­ing him for a walk in his pram, and even al­low­ing him to cry for sev­eral more min­utes to see if he nods off by him­self.

You have ex­pressed milk, but she wastes it by barely touch­ing it, or you ac­ci­den­tally drop the bot­tle on the oor.

These “I can’t be­lieve it” mo­ments can hap­pen as your pre­cious ex­pressed milk lit­er­ally goes down the drain. Don’t panic.

First, check if you have any more in the fridge or the freezer (to de­frost, sub­merge it in warm wa­ter or hold it un­der run­ning warm wa­ter).

Many breast­feed­ing moth­ers also keep formula milk in the cup­board for emer­gen­cies like this.

You have fas­tened your child into the car safely when you sud­denly re­alise you have for­got­ten your purse.

At that mo­ment, you sink your head on to the steer­ing feel, ready to ex­plode. But that won’t mag­i­cally transport your purse into your hand.

In­stead, gen­tly take your baby in your arms, lock the car, and make the five-minute jour­ney back to your apart­ment, and back into the car. There’s no other way.

Re­sist any temp­ta­tion to leave your baby alone in the locked car while you try to make a hur­ried dash to your house and back again.

You’ve had a long day, and your spouse cheer­ily asks: “Was ev­ery­thing ne at home to­day?”

Don’t sim­ply lash out or nod ac­qui­es­cently. Ex­plain you have had a dread­ful day: The wash­ing ma­chine broke down; your baby vom­ited over that new outfit you just bought him; or the car had a flat tyre.

In other words, be hon­est with your hus­band, and tell him the sort of day you’ve had. Then ask him to tell you about his day.

That way, you both can share your ex­pe­ri­ences with each other, and you un­der­stand each other bet­ter as a re­sult. A trou­ble shared is a trou­ble halved.

Your mother-in-law drops in at the ex­act mo­ment you are chang­ing a soiled di­a­per. The house is a mess, and you aren’t even dressed yet.

Turn this to your ad­van­tage – see it an op­por­tu­nity, not a threat. So, for­get about how your mother-in-law might rate your do­mes­tic skills. In­stead, ask her for help.

Tell her: “I’m so glad you’re here be­cause I need two pairs of hands right now.” Al­most cer­tainly she will re­spond im­me­di­ately by of­fer­ing to help you out. As­sign a spe­cific task to her, like dress­ing your baby while you tidy his room. And when she has sup­ported you like this once, she’ll be ready to do the same again.

For­get about how your mother-in­law might rate your do­mes­tic skills. Ask her for help in­stead and as­sign her a task.

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