Being a Parent is Hard Work
Every parent, no matter how old, learns a lot in the beginning about how to be the best parent to their baby. It’s okay to ask for advice and for help from other parents with more experience. Don’t worry, there are no stupid questions! Other parents have probably been through the same things you are going through. In addition to advice about parenting, it’s important to ask for other kinds of help—to keep yourself sane. Ask a friend or family member to help you with the laundry, give you a ride somewhere, go food shopping with you … any of those daily things that seem more complicated now that you have a baby.
Be the Best Parent You Can Be!
With all the bumps and valleys with being a teen parent it has been the most surreal, beautiful, challenging, and life learning experience.
—16-year-old mom, Clark County
You Don't Have to Do It Alone
Getting together with other new parents after you have your baby is a great help—especially if you are feeling lonely, isolated, or overwhelmed. It can help to share stories and concerns about your baby and discuss things like crying, sleeping, baby care, and taking care of yourself. Get the support and information you need to be the best parent you can be! Some communities have special support groups for single parents or teen parents.
Sometimes I wish there was a manual on how to raise our children, but I guess that would make life boring if we were all the same. Parenting while being parented is hard at times—but sometimes you can learn from the mistakes your parents make.
—19-year-old mom, Clark County
Connect with other new parents at parent support groups. Parent Trust has parent support groups throughout Washington State including classes just for new dads. Visit their website or call the Family Help Line at 1-800-932-4673.
Another parent support organization, Program for Early Parent Support (PEPS),
has support groups in King and Snohomish Counties for parents of newborns and second children. Visit their website or call 206-547-8570.
Check out Parent Place to search for parent support groups (including groups just for dads) in Longview, WA.
Find information and support for parents living in Skamania and Klickitat Counties, or call 1-866-631-1997.
Call (800) 322-2588 or search online for parenting classes, support groups, and more in your area.
Other places to find a parent support group in your community include libraries, community centers, churches, hospitals, and clinics.