When a baby arrives on the scene, mum and dad have a huge amount to worry about. It’s quite understandable, especially if it’s their first child.
There’s the worry of not knowing what you’re doing, about whether you will bond with your child and whether other, more experienced mums, dads and family members will judge you. I like to think I’m quite a resilient character but to a greater or lesser degree, I felt many of these concerns myself.
Common concerns of parents
A poll of parents carried out by the Post Office highlighted the 10 most common concerns of parents. Top of the list was having a freak accident with their child (46%). This was followed by not knowing how to parent their child (43%), not being able to afford having a child (42%) and fears about childproofing the family home (also 42%).
Worries about what would happen if one or both of the child’s parents died concerned 37% of survey participants. It was this concern that has persuaded the Post Office to launch a new life insurance product, details of which are below.
Worries about failing to connect with their child and being judged by others were shared by 34% of respondents. I found the list very interesting because of something it doesn’t feature: Fears over baby not sleeping properly.
Will Izzy sleep properly at night?
This was a big concern for me and it was based on hard experience. When we had our first child, Helen, she did not sleep at all at night to begin with.
She would only settle on my chest which meant I had to stay wide awake at night with a baby lying on my front! I had little chance to rest during the day time as Mrs Adams had a hard, surgical birth and I had to look after her as well as Helen.
When Izzy, our youngest daughter was born, I was worried we’d have a repeat of this. I had good reason to be concerned.
In terms of the birth experience, Izzy’s was as straightforward as they come. Unfortunately, my wife, Gill, had some complications. Her blood pressure went off the scale and there was a concern she may have eclampsia.
Gill was re-admitted to hospital for the best part of a week and Izzy stayed on the ward with her. I spent as much time with the pair of them as I could. Even so, it was noisy and there was no natural daylight. Babies need some exposure to natural light to learn the difference between night and day.
Mum and baby weren’t allowed off the ward so there were no outside strolls and it was all very stressful. Luckily it was a false alarm and Gill didn’t have eclampsia, but babies don’t need stress and when the two of them came home, I was very concerned that Izzy wouldn’t settle at night because of the unsettled time she’d had.
Trying to establish a bedtime routine on the ward had been tricky but once at home, we got straight on to it. We gave Izzy massages at night, ensured the last feed of the day was given in a dimly lit, quiet room etc.
It worked a treat and she very quickly settled into a good night time routine. I know we were very fortunate, not every mum and dad is so lucky, especially when things get off to a stressful start.
Free Parent Cover from the Post Office
The Post Office has recognised that parents have a lot to think about and learn when a baby arrives on the scene. Experiences like the ones I’ve outlined are not uncommon but are rarely covered in the parenting books.
In a clever move, the Post Office has created a life insurance product that gives mums and dads one less thing to worry about during their kids’ earliest, most demanding years. Know as Free Parent Cover, it provides £15,000 of cover per child for one year and the best thing is, the cover is free.
Mums and dads can use this product each time they have a child and can take advantage of the offer up until their child’s fourth birthday. Each parent can take out a policy so if both mum and dad have three children and both parents take out a policy, they’d get a total of £45,000 worth of cover a year.
While it’s a morbid thought, the importance of life insurance can’t be understated. I remember when we bought our house our solicitor said to Gill and I that he wanted to talk to us about wills and life insurance.
I was quite cocky about the whole scenario. I didn’t think there was much to worry about. If the worst happened to Gill or I, the other one would be there to look after the kids.
Our solicitor, however, brought the reality home with one simple statement.
“It’s all very well if one of you dies, but what happens if you both die?”
I had no answer to this. It made us realise the importance of life insurance cover and put lost sleep into perspective.
Find out more
You can find out more about Free Parent Cover online at the Post Office website. If you have a young family and are looking for a life insurance policy, it’s well worth taking a look as it does give you one less thing to worry about and you know cover is in place should the worst happen.
Disclosure: this commissioned post was produced in association with the Post Office