Advice For New Dads During Pregnancy
We all know that once your partner becomes pregnant there are a rollercoaster of emotions that soon follow.
It can be difficult for dads to really feel a connection to the baby and the whole pregnancy experience at this stage. As moms we totally get that!
Having said that although we do understand that it can be difficult for you to connect.
It still doesn’t stop us moms from feeling like we are going it alone sometimes.
There are a few things that you can do as a dad to not only feel more involved but also to support your partner during this time.
There will likely be a lot of crying, tiredness and uncertainty going on all at the same time.
At this stage sometimes women can feel like they are having to deal with it all alone.
This is where you as a dad can step in to not only help support your partner but also to prepare and start to feel a connection to your unborn child.
During the first trimester your partner will likely feel exhausted as her hormone levels rise and baby begins to take shape inside the womb.
There are some very simple practical things that you can immediately do to help.
1. Try Cooking
You can help your partner out by cooking every few days to take off some of the pressure.
I know it may not be feasible for you to cook every single day but believe me even if you can cook every few days it will be a tremendous help.
During the first trimester, women can experience morning sickness which can give a serious aversion to strong food smells.
During that first trimester, no woman wants to head to the kitchen to cook unless she absolutely has too.
Some great advice for you as a new dad would be to help with the practical day to day things.
If you are not a huge fan of cooking, you can try bulk cooking and freezing it if it makes things a little easier for you.
This will be a major support to your partner in ways you may not understand right now. Pregnancy can be a scary thing for women because we tend to worry.
We worry if the baby is ok, we worry if we are eating the right types of food, we worry about everything.
By attending the appointments together it will feel more like you are on the journey as a team.
During my first pregnancy my husband was able to make most of my appointments but there were a few that he just could not attend because of work.
It was a big thing for me because I felt when he wasn’t there that I was alone.
I didn’t know if this would be the day that the doctors decided to give me some bad news.
I didn’t know if this would be the day that I actually passed out from the doctors having to take blood. I needed support.
Helping out is great at this stage especially if your partner is in the 3rd trimester of pregnancy. The third trimester can be tough because your partner will likely be nesting.
Nesting is basically when the woman begins to get the house ready for the baby’s arrival.
Don’t be surprised if you see her down on the floor scrubbing or wanting to repaint the whole house.
It is completely normal behavior and part of the nesting process.
If you already have children, think about some useful ways that you can give your partner a break.
Go on special lunch dates with your children or take them out for ice cream.
If your partner is willing, go out as a family and do something fun together before baby arrives.
3. Attend Antenatal Classes As A Team
Antenatal classes tend to take place during the second or third trimester of pregnancy.
During this time the woman is beginning to get more of a handle on the changes occurring to her body.
She will be feeling much more confident and perhaps the morning sickness has even gone away.
If this is your partners, first baby, then she will have no idea what to expect during labor.
These antenatal classes will be invaluable to her and therefore having your support at them will just solidify the fact that she is not alone.
What is even more great about doing the classes together is that you will be able to offer her supportive advice when she needs you the most during labor.
A great antenatal class that I can highly recommend is “The Online Prenatal Class by Pulling Curls“.
The course is amazing! I have gone through it myself and best of all its online so you can do it at your own convenience. You can check it out right here.
More Advice for New Dads:
Physical support is great if you can do that but personally speaking emotional support is just as much, if not more important.
There are some little things that you can do to show your complete support to your partner during these 9 months.
1. Be A Friendly Ear
Listening to your partner talk through any concerns they may have is incredibly supportive. You might be the only person that your partner can openly speak to without feeling judged in any way.
Be careful to listen attentively and do not dismiss anything that she says, rather talk though the concerns together.
This will definitely put you in the Mrs’ good books!
Take the time to write out together what you hope to happen during the labor. Will you be accepting pain relief or doing it naturally? Do you want to give birth standing up?
Do you want to have music playing? Do you want delayed cord clamping or skin to skin contact with your baby?
Writing these things down together will mean you are on the same page as your partner before she goes into labor.
It’s also really important to talk about how you will raise your child together. A lot of people don’t do this and find that a lot of issues pop up later on.
Do you agree on discipline methods?
Will you be an outgoing family?
Set aside specific days to go on adventures with the children.
Will you immunise or not?
There is a lot to be discussed.
3. Get Your Finances in Order
Talk through how much you want to spend on baby items. Decide what you think is important to buy now and perhaps what you will need to save towards. Perhaps you need to create a new family budget going forward.
4. Make Her Feel Special
If your partner is even a fraction like me then you will need to make her feel special in some way. I tend to become very insecure whenever I am pregnant.
I usually feel as though I am overweight and nothing I wear ever looks right.
Serious- Insecurity- Issues!
This immediately goes away once I deliver but I just can’t see past the fog when I am pregnant.
Making your partner feel special will help her to gain masses of confidence in herself.
5. Have A Plan for After The Baby is Born
This is super important because during the postpartum phase there is a lot that goes on with a woman’s body, not even to mention the hormones.
Will you be taking some time off work to help with the baby?
If your partner is not breastfeeding, are you going to share in night time feeding?
Think about things you can do to lighten the burden for your partner.
Following these simple tips will mean the world to your partner and it will also help you to feel part of the process before your baby is born.