Becoming a parent is a life-changing event. From Conception to Birth, everything you need to know comes along with mastering the skills of nappy changing, bottle-feeding, and settling a crying baby, along with sleepless nights, money worries, and concerns about your baby’s health and development.
Research: Women are the ones who carry the baby and give birth, but this does not give them an advantage in being a good parent. They’re just more likely to have read up on what to do once the baby is born.
Often, it’s a lack of research on a dad’s part that causes him to worry. It takes effort to be a good parent, and that effort has to begin before the birth.
Get Organized: The more you organize before the baby’s arrival, the more in control you’ll feel. Practice kitting out the change bag with nappies, wipes, creams, spare clothes, and everything else needed. This will make it quicker and easier for you to pack the bag when distracted by a baby screaming in the background.
Familiarizing yourself with all the kit, including the car seat, will make things less stressful once the baby arrives.
Be a more hands-on-dad: Sharing night feeds will give your partner a break and bring you closer to your baby. If your partner is breastfeeding, she might want to express milk using a breast pump so you can feed with a bottle. Bathing your baby and changing their nappy also help you to bond. After your baby’s birth, make sure to enjoy skin-on-skin contact.
This strengthens the desire within you to nurture and protect.
Don’t be a spare part: The more in control you feel, the less likely you are to feel pushed out by bossier female relatives. Taking on parenting duties straight away means you can confidently say, “I can do this.” Never allow yourself to feel like a spare part. You and your partner are equally the most important people in your child’s life, and don’t forget it!
Find other dads: Go to parent and baby groups. You’ll be made to feel welcome, and there will probably be other dads there too. Your local children’s center should have details.
Don’t hide your feelings: Many men hide their nerves to avoid appearing “weak.” But feelings of anxiety are intensified once you’re a dad. Suddenly, you have this little person to support, and you don’t want to feel like a failure. But opening up about your concerns is a sign of strength, not weakness.
Anxiety about finances is one of the top reasons why new dads lose sleep, but remember that your baby doesn’t need fancy clothing and expensive equipment to feel happy.
Love is the greatest gift you can give your child, so don’t worry about all the things you can’t afford. Also remember that when a baby comes along, your priorities shift. Finances are redirected, as you no longer spend money socializing the way you might have before your baby arrived.