Congratulations mom and dad you did it. After nine long months you are finally parents to a beautiful new baby boy or girl. Now the real work begins. Listen up dads! You are IMPORTANT and you are NEEDED. I'm not sure dads really know how much of a role they play when it comes to support for new moms transitioning from the hospital to their homes. They've just finished doing one of the most life changing things ever, add in the recovery process, those hormones and yep, you guessed it, she needs your help. Trust me, she will love you so much more if you chip in and put your super dad cape on! So how can you help?
Give mom a break!
This one should be obvious but there are several men who honestly don't think about this one. I've heard things such as, "I thought you were okay," or "You didn't ask me," Let's be real, moms should not have to ask for a break. Take some time to think about all that she has done and what she has to do. From constant feedings to little sleep. Giving her a break and take over things such as evening feedings so she can nap, taking the baby when he or she is fussy so mom doesn't get too overwhelmed, or even just spending some bonding time with the little one so mom can soak in the tub or shower will make a world of difference. Talk to her and ask what you can do to help. She will be so grateful, trust me.
Use your words.
Don't let her forget that she is loved and appreciated. She brought your child into this world. Aren't you grateful for that? Tell her how beautiful she is and how proud of her you are. Words of encouragement will definitely give her the strength she needs. Those first few months can be very difficult when it comes to adjusting. Motivate her, she needs it!
After delivery there will be family and friends who will say this or that when it comes to parenting. Everyone has their opinion on the way they want to do things. One thing to remember is to stick with your mate. If you have made a decision about something when it comes to your baby don't let anyone come in and change that. Also, don't let anyone attack or belittle the mother of your child. People have good intentions but you two are raising the baby not family or friends. Stick to your guns and protect your woman from those who need to mind their business.
Don't be afraid.
A lot of men don't do things because they are afraid. Maybe it's their first time with a new baby and they don't want to mess up or hurt him/her. Don't be afraid. We all have to learn. If there are any doubts about anything, ask mom what she needs, ask mom how it should be done. She can guide you until you get comfortable and get a routine of your own. It takes all of us time to adjust but you will be a pro in no time.
Most importantly having dads support can help reduce the mother's chances of postpartum depression. You definitely don't want her to feel alone during this process. Parent with her as much as you can. It is tremendously needed! How has the dad in your baby's life done his part? please share!
Until next time sending you peace, love, and light!
Tiffany Underwood Certified Health Coach
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