Welcome Every Baby Story
This client was in her twenties and was considered significantly high-risk by the providers caring for her during her pregnancy and delivery. This was her first pregnancy and child. She had used drugs before she found out she was pregnant, had been the victim of domestic violence and the father of her baby was incarcerated. She had a history of difficulties in school and depression.
She was referred to the Welcome Every Baby program after delivery. The hospital staff was concerned that she had a very difficult labor and did not want anything to do with the baby. She had attempted to breastfeed but sent the baby to the nursery and did not want to spend time with her. Everyone was concerned about poor bonding and attachment.
A Public Health-Welcome Every Baby nurse began visiting her at her parent’s home soon after delivery. The PHN formed a supportive and empathic relationship with the client and helped her understand her baby’s cues, temperament and development. The nurse assisted and supported the new mom in becoming a good parent and “falling in love” with her baby which is a critical task for the baby’s future social, emotional, and cognitive well being, ability to learn in school and be successful in life. The nurse also assisted mom in getting the care she needed for herself and her baby including getting treatment and counseling for postpartum depression, and needed referrals to resources in the community.
The baby is now nine months old and is a healthy, happy girl who is developmentally on task and thriving. Mom has developed excellent parenting skills and is nurturing, tender, and affectionate with her daughter. They share a strong attachment and mom is appropriately worried about her child and also very proud of her accomplishments. The client was able to get an apartment on her own. The PHN stated that this client has come so far and done such a good job when most people did not think it was possible. The PHN also stated that this is the only client she has ever had that filled out every single Ages and Stages Developmental Questionnaire and has been so excited about her child’s development. The PHN feels like this is the first time the client has ever felt so successful and proud, and that she now truly understands what a good parent she is and what a wonderful relationship she has developed with her daughter.