What Is the Bringing Baby Home Workshop? 
 

Many new parents feel nervous about their parenting skills and worried about how a baby will impact their partnership or marriage. It’s common to feel strain, stress and disconnection in your relationship while raising a newborn. The Bringing Baby Home Program combines scientific research and public education to improve the quality of life for babies and children by strengthening their families. The goal is to promote social change by making the BBH workshop available as part of the standard birth preparation program offered to expectant couples throughout the nation.

BBH shows couples how to avoid the pitfalls of new parenthood and includes exercises to help them positively manage the strain that comes along with their newborn. In my practice, I can teach parents these research-based tools in individual family sessions or within the workshop group format.

The Research
 

Dr. John Gottman began his research on couples having children in 1985. His longitudinal studies on healthy relationships are a cornerstone in positive psychology. The data analyzed and collected in his years of research has shown that couples who take the BBH workshop report fewer “meltdowns” higher relationship quality, less interpersonal hostility, better co-parenting abilities and markedly less incidence of post-partum depression. Both fathers and mothers showed greater sensitivity and responsiveness to their infants’ signals. In addition, the families that participated in the program saw fewer language delays in one-year old infants and noted their babies showed less distress in response to limitations (such a toy out of reach).

What Is Covered in the Workshop?
 

  • Transition to parenthood (noticing internal shifts and building awareness) 
  • Building love maps (learning about each partners dreams/hopes/goals and sharing inner life) 
  • Sharing fondness and admiration with your partner
  • Teaching healthy ways to argue
  • Building up emotional reserves (both with couples and with your children) 
  • Maintaining positive perspectives
  • Learning how to interact with a baby with age appropriate expectations
  • Ritualizing the daily – how to listen to each other and engage in stress reducing conversations 
  • Flooding, self-soothing and taking breaks (how to manage big emotions and changes in affect)
  • Recognizing the four warning signs of relationship meltdown
  • Practicing constructive problem-solving 
  • Honoring mothers and fathers/birth partners
  • Recognizing the birth partner/father’s role
  • Understanding baby blues, postpartum mood disorders and other mental health issues (looking at research on healthy attachment/bonding and preventing depression’s effect on children)
  • How to connect with children (specific tools for emotion coaching with children) 
  • Preserving intimacy and romance 
  • Creating shared meaning, values and family rituals

Who Can Benefit From This Training?
 

This program is designed for all pregnant couples, parents with new babies and parents who are experiencing relationship strain during the first years of parenthood. 

It is a six-hour workshop spanning two Saturdays (or Sundays) for 3.5 hours each day. Each couple will receive a workbook and other materials. Class size is limited to five couples. Classes will be held either in Playa Vista or Culver City, depending on the size of the group. Individual work is also available. The cost will be 450.00 per couple. Please register with Andrea Mikonowicz at 323-509-7717.