Hand to Hold's Official Blog: Written by Parents for Parents

4 Things You Can Do When Someone You Love is in the Hospital

The following is a guest post from a member of our Hand to Hold – NICU Family Voices community. If you have an essay, an experience, or tips you would like to share with our readers, please email leighann@handtohold.org.

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by Natalie Butterworth

This is meant to be helpful for those who have a friend or family member in the hospital. I learned a lot from my own experience and want to share it with others, in the hopes it may be helpful for those who do have to endure a tough time.

It’s impossible to know what someone will need or want until you experience it yourself.


If you have a friend or family member in the hospital, especially if it’s for an extended stay, visit with her. Those hospital days are long and painful. It hurts to be separated from your home, pets and friends or family. Ask if she needs anything. If she says she’s not sure, some suggestions include movies, books, art projects, snacks, toiletries, crosswords, etc. I had a super wonderful visitor who bought a bunch of small trinkets and snacks and wrapped them in wrapping paper. She told me to only open one a day so I would have something to look forward to. I thought this was just the sweetest idea! [Continue reading]

Breastfeeing a Preemie: A 3 Year Journey.

dad feeding NICU baby breastfeeding hand to hold prematurity preemie

My breastfeeding journey began kind of hectic, you could say. I had just had a c-section, effectively birthing a 26-weeker, and was whisked to a recovery room where nurses hooked me up to a breast pump and told me I had to do this now! Of course I … [Continue reading]

{Professional Insight} Postpartum PTSD: How to Manage a Traumatic Birth Experience

PTSD traumatic birth hand to hold Anna Glezer

The following post is the third installment of a three-part series on PPD and PTSD in NICU parents. Visit part 1, Postpartum Depression and PTSD in Fathers, and part 2, Postpartum Depression After a Complicated Delivery.  A Traumatic … [Continue reading]

My Preemie Did Not Graduate From Early Intervention


My preemie just finished his first few weeks of preschool. After a rocky first few days, everyone says he is doing just fine. I was so surprised to hear that, considering neither one of us handles transitions well. (I think having a certain stuffed … [Continue reading]

Did We Meet Our Podcast Campaign Goal?

hand to hold podcast campaign

We are thrilled to announce that thanks to the generosity of our donors and the fundraising efforts of our Hand to Hold community, we were able to raise $22,055 during our two-week Podcast Campaign, surpassing our goal by more than $2,000! Wow! We … [Continue reading]