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Wed May 06 2020 00:00:00 GMT+0000 (Coordinated Universal Time)
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Many new parents rely on the advice and comfort of friends and family when they bring their newborn home. But with shelter in place restrictions, many can no longer access that social support network. For Cleo member Keely and her husband, Byron, Cleo has filled in the gaps. After welcoming baby Colette 7 weeks ago, Keely has turned to her Cleo Guide, Taylor, for emotional and practical support. “Speaking with Taylor gives me a much-needed boost in both mood and energy,” she said.

Keely accesses Cleo through Byron’s employer, Shopify, which provides the benefit to his family. We caught up with her to find out how Cleo has made an impact on her pregnancy and birth — which happened before the COVID-19 pandemic. We also learned how Keely’s Guide Taylor has helped her through this unusual postpartum period.

Meeting Her Dedicated Guide

Keely was in her second trimester when she started working with her Cleo guide, Taylor, and found it easy to get started. Keely simply downloaded the app, punched in her member code, and answered a few questions to help us personalize a care plan for her and her family. From day one, Keely’s guide, Taylor, has been there to support her and provide her with knowledge and comfort at every step in their journey together.

Guidance Through Pregnancy

Throughout Keely’s second trimester, she received proactive, timely information from Taylor to help her prepare for their first baby. Keely continued using the app throughout the third trimester and found it helpful as birth was approaching. In particular, Keely found Cleo’s videos on breastfeeding to be informative and relevant. Members like Keely navigate their journeys with step-by-step lessons developed by internationally recognized parenting experts that are rich in coaching and actionable insights.

The Fourth Trimester

Once baby Colette was born, Keely found herself in a position that many new moms can relate to: tired and a bit overwhelmed. She appreciated that her Guide Taylor reached out proactively to send important information about challenges she might be facing.

At the five-week mark, Colette, who had never been a great sleeper to begin with, now struggled to go down for any naps and was incredibly fussy in the evenings. That’s when Keely became much more proactive about using her Guide as a trusted resource.

“I was struggling and emailed Taylor for support,” Keely said. “After a 30-minute phone call with Taylor, I knew everything was going to be OK. Taylor taught Keely about a practice called ‘emotional regulation’. Keely learned that regulating her emotions is really important because the baby picks up on her stress and anxiety, which likely was contributing to Colette’s own fussiness.”

Knowing this sudden life change compounded with fatigue and altered sleep patterns was the crux of so much anxiety for the family, Taylor chatted with both Keely and Byron about what their options for sleep might look like. Keely and her husband, Byron, spoke to Taylor about the pros and cons of co-sleeping, how to handle sleep with a newborn, and how to get Colette to go down for a nap. Taylor gave them different ways to approach sleep and the big aha moment for Keely was realizing they needed to figure out what was right for their family — and not worry about outside expectations.

“Talking to our Guide helped me realize we are not alone,” Keely noted. “Taylor outlined everything we could try and emphasized there is no right or wrong choice for your family, only the best choice that works for you. I always feel like the best parent I can be after talking with Taylor.”

Working From Home with a Newborn

Keely and Byron had a plan in place for Keely to take her maternity leave and then for Byron to take his paternity leave when Keely returned to work. This plan was decided before COVID-19 struck and shelter-in-place orders were enacted.

Keely and Byron stuck to their plan but Byron came to realize that working from home is extremely hard with a newborn. Keely encouraged Byron to share these struggles with Taylor. “We both spoke with Taylor and by the time the session ended, we felt re-energized and ready to try some new approaches to balancing work from home with a newborn.”

As Keely, Byron, and baby Colette continue to adjust and grow as a new family, Taylor is providing them with the confidence they needed to succeed as new parents with less stress, more support, and better sleep for all three of them.

Cleo’s family benefits platform is an employer-sponsored benefit that combines one-on-one guide engagement, evidence-based programs, and a personalized app experience to serve the needs of families like Keely and Byron’s. Want Cleo at your company? Let us know.