Five ways to support a new parent from a distance

It can be difficult to know how best to support any new parents, let alone ones that live a long way away. Here are some tips to help you stay connected. 

Whether it’s family or friends, if you’re living far away when they start a family it can be hard to know you’re missing out on all those special moment, and to support them in a way that you would if you lived closer.

Without that day to day contact, it can be hard to know what support they need, how best to fit in with their schedule or to show you care from a distance.

However, supporting new parents might be simpler than you think by taking inspiration from the tips below. 

1. Get technology on your side

There are innumerable apps and devices that can help keep you connected through video calls, voice calls, emails, photo-sharing and chat. Don’t underestimate the value of a friendly text, or a voicemail, waiting for when they wake up letting them know you’re thinking of them; it may be all they need to get that spring back in their step.

2. Make an appointment

It might be easy to keep pushing the idea out of mind if you have deadlines piling up and an endless laundry pile. To avoid any excuses, the best thing that you can do is commit to a set day or date. This is especially important if there’s a significant time difference, to make sure that the time you decide suits everybody. However, this plan should be flexible enough if you can catch up later, if things change.

3. Global delivery

In this day and age, there’s countless ways to let your loved ones know you’re thinking of them. Take advantage of online shopping and organise a grocery shop for them, send some flowers or even book them cleaner to tidy up the house. These are all things you can do from anywhere in the world, and the appreciation will stretch across the miles.

4. Go old school

How exciting is it to receive something other than bills in the mail these days? Go old school and send your friend a letter, a card or even a small care package; they’ll be able to read and treasure it in their own time, and the thought that you’ve put into it won’t go unnoticed.

5. Pack your bags

The ultimate way to show you care might be visiting. There’s a million reasons why this is difficult, often more so the further away you are, and it will vary from person to person.

But if you do decide to make the trip, consider waiting until the family settles into their new routine. As a bonus you’ll probably be able to get some quality time with them, and provide that all important back up as the initial burst of support wanes.

Of course, you don’t have to go all out to make new parents feel supported. A quick hello is often enough to let them know you’re thinking of them. But don’t be offended if they don’t have the time to talk. Just give it some time and try again later; it will be comforting to know that they have your understanding.

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