Young parents

A lot can change when you become a new parent, and even if you’ve got help you might feel like you have to cope alone. But we’re here to support you.

Being a new parent

No matter how old or young they are, most parents find it hard to cope when they have a baby. When you’re a new mother or father, you might be worried about:

  • feeling judged or people making comments
  • arguing with your family or carers
  • doing the best for your child
  • proving that you can do everything or that you don’t know enough
  • not getting enough rest
  • keeping up with schoolwork and what to do in the future
  • how you look and whether your body will change
  • outside agencies, such as health visitors, or other people/family getting involved.

5 tips for new parents

  • Talk to your health visitor about free baby groups.
  • Try not to put pressure on yourself to know everything right away.
  • Ask for help when you need it.
  • Take time to rest when your baby is resting.
  • Talk about how you’re feeling with our counsellors.

Whatever you’re worried about, you don’t need to cope alone. We’ve got advice to help and you can speak to a Childline counsellor about anything that’s on your mind.

Going back to school

Going back to school can seem scary when you’ve had a baby. But you’ve got a right to get an education, and your school should be there to support you:

Keeping in touch with friends

Talking to your friends and spending time with them can be an important way to feel less isolated or alone. But that’s not always easy when you’ve got a baby.

It might feel like you’ve not got time to see your friends, or that they’re doing things without you.

Some young people feel like their friends don’t understand what they’re going through, or that they’re not interested in what’s happening.

Your friends might be worried that you haven’t got time for them, or whether or not to contact you.

However you’re feeling, there are things you can do.

don’t know
who to
talk to

Contact us to speak about anything

Can I ask for help?

Lots of young people who talk to Childline worry about asking for help. You might be worried about being seen as a bad parent, or like you can’t cope.

Every parent, no matter how old they are has times where they struggle to look after their baby. Taking care of a baby doesn’t have to be something you do completely alone. And asking for help doesn’t mean you’re a bad parent.

Asking for help can take a lot of courage, but it can really help. Find out more about where you can get support.

Remember, it’s okay to ask for help about anything, including:

  • feeling depressed or like you can’t cope
  • practical support about where to live or struggling to afford things
  • breastfeeding, bottle feeding or tips on caring for your baby
  • coping with crying or teething
  • difficulties with your family or partner
  • if you’re worried about your baby’s safety at home
  • any health worries, big or small. 

If you’re not sure where to go, you can always ask your health visitor. And if you can’t speak to them, you can talk to Childline.

It’s very common for mothers to start feeling depressed after having a child. Being depressed doesn’t mean that you’ve done anything wrong, and it can help to get support.

You can visit your doctor any time to talk about it. Find out more about post-natal depression.

Why do I have a health visitor?

Every family will have a health visitor who’ll come to see them between the 10th and 14th day after you’ve given birth. If you’re struggling with anything, your health visitor is there to help.

Your health visitor will usually visit you regularly to weigh your baby and see how you’re feeling. But you can contact them any time.

If you’re ever not sure where to go for support, your health visitor can give you advice on where to go or what to do.

Relationships

Relationships can feel complicated after you’ve had a baby.

You might be worried about your relationship with the mother or father of your child, be in a relationship with someone else or be single. Or you might be worried about your relationship with your baby.

No matter what your relationship status is, it’s important to remember that your needs matter and there’s support available.

Being a single parent

Whether you’re with your family, a carer or on your own, being a single parent doesn’t mean that you have to cope alone.

If your family or carers are there to support you, it can help a lot to let them support you and talk about how they can help without taking over.

Even if you don’t have your family with you there are ways to cope. Take a look at some resources for single parents:

Whether the baby’s other parent is involved can depend on lots of things.

It can be better for children to see both parents regularly if it’s safe to, but it can take time for both of you to feel comfortable with anything you arrange.

Try talking to an adult you trust about what you want to happen, and how they could support you to speak to the other parent. If you’re not sure who to talk to, you can always speak to Childline.

Help, I'm pregnant!

Olga Rose talks about getting pregnant and having a baby at 15.