Managing social media
A good starting point for social media use is to identify what you want to gain from it. For many new parents, this might be a sense of connection, reduction in social isolation, sharing of experiences, information, validation, or reassurance. Social media can be really helpful for these purposes and may provide welcome extra support for expectant or new parents.
However, some types of social media use may increase anxiety and frustration. There are so many unrealistic portrayals of parenthood within social media, so its’ best to work out who are the more trusted, realistic resources and follow those. Take your time to gauge when and how much exposure is useful according to how you feel afterwards.
If you notice that social media is having a negative effect, try diverting your attention by phoning someone or messaging them directly instead. Sometimes, social media use can exacerbate pre-existing anxiety, so it may be helpful to speak with a professional about strategies to manage it.
When you have concerns or questions about a baby’s health or medical issue, it is always worth seeking advice and information from a health practitioner, even if you check online for information too.
New parents’ Facebook use at the transition to parenthood. Bartholomew. 2012.
Pregnant women sharing pregnancy-related information on Facebook: Web-based survey study. Harpel. 2018.