How to Support a Friend on Bed Rest

There’s few quicker ways to quell the joy and excitement of pregnancy than bed rest. No matter the reason, from placenta previa to high blood pressure to preeclampsia, a doctor’s order to stay in bed can put a damper on any woman’s journey to motherhood.

So what’s a best friend to do? Step up to the plate with six simple, creative, and sweet ways to help your pal make the most of her downtime.


Treat mom-to-be to a spa day in bed. With a few essential ingredients, you can play esthetician for the day. Set the mood with a spa-themed playlist (there are plenty of readymade lists available on Spotify and GooglePlay) and a lavender-scented candle to promote calm. Stock up on a luxurious facial oil, a moisturizing sheet mask, and a few of her favorite nail colors. For peace of mind, Juice Beauty and Belli Skincare offer pregnancy-safe products made specifically for expectant moms.


Help transform a ho-hum bedroom into a serene space that your pal won’t mind spending time in. If you’re looking for a splurge, try gifting her with a set of sumptuous silk sheets. For more thrifty options, look to a soft throw blanket, cozy pajamas, or a silk pillowcase—the last of which is considered an anti-wrinkle, bedhead-saving staple by professional beauty mavens, so added bonus there.


Whether you’re supporting her from afar or short on time for a visit, mailing a thoughtful care package can go a long way toward helping your friend feel less alone. Pack it to the brim with some of her favorite healthy snacks, magazines, movies, and books. Aim to keep your pal occupied with crossword puzzles, adult coloring books, and small craft projects like knitting or cross stitch.


There’s nothing that says monotony quite like days on-end spent cooped up in bed. Give your friend something to look forward to each week by instituting a standing date. Whether it’s Tuesday game night or a Friday brunch-in-bed, creating a schedule can help keep a woman on bed rest sane.


There’s no escaping it: for some, pregnancy can be a time of intense anxiety. Your body is changing, hormones are raging, and most likely you have no idea what lies ahead. With your pal on bed rest, she has plenty of time to wallow in all of these worries. Help her gain perspective and work through her troubles by just being present. Pull up a chair, or if you’re long distance, hop on video chat and give your friend full license to unload. Chances are, just being there for her is the most supportive thing you can do.





Lizzie Goodman

Lizzie Goodman is a freelance writer specializing in pregnancy, child development, and parenting. She lives in Chicago, IL with her husband and their toddler daughter. They are waiting for the terrible twos to end—any day now.