POST EVENT REPORT: ‘Growing Your Family’

The theme for this month’s free breakfast event for parents was ‘Growing Your Family,’ sponsored by Clearblue, and supported by Al Ain Farms & WaterWipes. Here’s a quick rundown of what we discussed at the event – and look out for the detailed event article in the July issue of Mother Baby & Child!

  • DATE: Thursday 27th June 2024
  • VENUE: Stella di Mare Hotel, Dubai Marina
  • THEME: Growing Your Family
  • SPONSOR: Clearblue
  • PARTNERS: WaterWipes & Al Ain Farms

The breakfast event opened with a welcome address from Kay Marham, before introducing the first interview guest, Dr Christina Walch-Edwards, Consultant Obstetrician & Gynaecologist at Mediclinic City Hospital and Mediclinic Creek Harbour. 

Balancing Medical & Emotional Needs

Dr Christina Walch-Edwards, Consultant Obstetrician & Gynaecologist at Mediclinic City Hospital and Mediclinic Creek Harbour

Dr Christina was warm, approachable and open with the ladies and when asked how she balances the practicalities of the ‘doctor-patient’ relationship with the physical and emotional needs of mothers, she talked emphasised the importance of communication. At Mediclinic, Dr Christina’s style of care is individually appropriate to the best needs and interests of each woman. 

She advised the ladies to be open and communicate their wants and needs with the doctors they come into contact with, also making the point that a good doctor will always ask the questions that help you to work together:

  • Have you thought about what kind of birth you would like to have?
  • Are there any issues that are worrying you?
  • Do you feel you need any other information or support?
  • How are you feeling?

Dr Christina reminded the ladies in the audience that questions such as these help to open communication, and she implored the audience to “please do not feel shy or hesitant to ask your doctor or ObGyn any questions and tell them what’s on your mind – we very much work together with you and your input and helps us both to achieve this.

Creating & Maintaining Your Wellbeing & Confidence as a New Parent

Jana Krige, Nurse Manager, Fakeeh University Hospital


As a Nurse Manager, Jana is in contact with both the expectant parents right from the beginning, as well as the medical team, and plays a significant role in keeping all the arrangements organised. 

At the event, Jana met expectant first-time parents and used her experience to talk at length about how both soon-to-be mothers and fathers typically feel during the pregnancy. She said that, depending on the couple:

  • There are varying levels of stress and fear about the unknown
  • Worries about whether they will have the knowledge to understand how to be good parents 
  • They will typically feel ill-equipped about how to look after a new baby
  • Worries about the huge changes to their life and how they will cope with this
  • Thoughts and anxieties around the birth. 

The Fakeeh University Hospital (FUH) Nurse Manager talked about the value of antenatal classes in addressing these concerns. She explained that FUH provides free antenatal classes for expectant parents and emphasised the value of fathers coming to classes, in order to have more exposure to the pregnancy process, to gather more knowledge, to be around other fathers in the same situation and to build confidence in their own knowledge, self-trust and capabilities as a new father.

FUH Life Parenthood Classes CLICK HERE for information on Free Antenatal Classes for expectant mothers and fathers.

The Changing Family Dynamic When a New Baby Comes Home

Lisa Sherrington-Boyd, (aka Principal Lisa’ & ‘The Potty Queen’), Founder of Happy Families

Lisa Sherrington-Boyd is affectionately known as both ‘Principal Lisa’ and ‘The Potty Queen’ to many mothers in the UAE. Her extensive work with young children – particularly toddlers – within families have been a gift to thousands of parents in navigating the toddler stage. 

As a childcare professional Lisa told our audience “ I absolutely love toddlers!” and without a doubt, Lisa has a unique way of articulating the feelings, frustrations and perspectives of toddlers to their parents. Where a toddler might show frustration through behaviours, Principal Lisa explained that toddlers do not have the language skills or emotional development to articulate how they feel or understand why their parents are spending so much time and attention on a new baby. 

She revealed that toddlers are actually not very interested babies! Babies can’t play with them or talk with them, and they often learn that they can get the attention of their parents via behaviours. Principal Lisa’s advice was therefore to:

Make sure that, as a mother, the first time you see and greet your toddler in the morning, you do not do so with the new baby in your arms. This gives your toddler the reassurance that your toddler has their own regular time with you to snuggle and be together. 

Make positive sibling associations between your toddler and the new baby. Create activities for them (such as setting up a colouring station) and tell them “your baby brother / sister wants you to have fun colouring today. Or, if you have something special for dinner, tell them: “baby wants you to enjoy your dinner with the family, as much as baby enjoys spending time with you.”

If your toddler handles the baby too roughly (for example, poking a finger into their tummy), rather than tell them not to do that, take their hand away from the baby’s head and body and move it towards the baby’s feet, and tell you toddler “baby loves it when you stroke her feet.” She says, gently move the hand towards the feet to keep the baby comfortable, while also guiding your toddler to make their touch gentle. This approach teaches them they are doing a nice thing – and helping toddlers to feel reassured with the new baby!

Principal Lisa is on hand to help all families and has a very special understanding of children – and communicates with them at their level wonderfully. If you have any issues with toddler behaviours, potty training, nanny training or other family issues for which you need help, you can contact Principal Lisa HERE

Family Planning: Pregnancy & Ovulation Testing

Aurelie Mayolle, Marketing Director at MetroMed, for Clearblue

Finding out whether or not you are pregnant is a very special, private, personal and close bonding moment for a couple. You’ll share your reaction together and many couples will talk about it together and make plans. Because of moments like these, almost every woman has heard of Clearblue Pregnancy Test Kits!

Always buy your pregnancy test kits from the pharmacy!

Our next guest speaker, Aurelie Mayolle, Marketing Director responsible for Clearblue, told our audience that something many women are not aware of, however, is that you need to be careful where you buy your Clearblue Test Kit! In the first of many revelations about a product we all thought we knew, Aurelie informed us that we should only buy Clearblue Test Kits from a pharmacy, and not order online. Why? She explained it is because, as the official distributor for Clearblue, her company maintains the Clearblue Pregnancy Test Kits at an optimum temperature – and the pharmacies that stock Clearblue also have temperature-controlled facilities, which online retailers may not. 

Use the pregnancy test kit in the morning!

The second of many involving pregnancy test kits are to do with following the instructions properly, For example, the test kit should be used in the morning, before drinking any liquids, in order to test a urine sample that has a higher concentration of testable hormones. This will give you a more accurate result.

Find out exactly how far along your pregnancy is, with three Clearblue testing options

Many of the audience were happy to discover that Clearblue – the runaway market leader in home pregnancy test kits – actually provides you with three different testing options:

  • Clearblue 1 Minute: This test kit is generally used by women who have missed their period and want to know if they are pregnant. By using the test according to the instructions, you will know within 1-3 minutes whether the test shows you are pregnant, or not pregnant!
  • Clearblue How Many Weeks: This is the only home pregnancy test kit that tells you whether you are either 1-2 weeks pregnant; 2-3 weeks pregnant; or 3+ weeks pregnant.
  • Clearblue 6 Days: This product fulfils the needs of couples who want to know as soon as possible whether their baby-making has been successful! Cearblue 6 Days will tell you 6 days before your period is due whether or not you are pregnant.

All three Clearblue test kits will give you over 99% accurate (from the day of your expected period) information on whether you are pregnant, which is reassuring. It was wonderful for the audience to listen to an expert talk about home pregnancy test kits – something we thought we knew all about, only to find there is a lot more to understand that helps with family planning!

The breakfast morning ended, as usual, with our prize draw and goody Bags from our Partners:

Al Ain Farms, who gave away samples of their fresh Organic Laban and Organic Yogurts

WaterWipes, the only baby wipes made from pure water, with just a drop of fruit extract for mothers who insist on using only pure natural ingredients on their baby’s skin.

Mediclinic: Who very kindly provided Goody Bags for all the ladies!

Keep an eye on the website and your email for details of our next event!

Check out the Event Image Gallery HERE!

Read About our May Event, ‘Early Childhood Development’

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