Advice Column, Baby, Bonitas, Health, Parenting, Pregnancy & Baby

New Dad’s roles

  • Bonitas
  • Category Advice Column, Baby, Bonitas, Health, Parenting, Pregnancy & Baby

The following information is to be used as a guide to and at the discretion of the end-user and should not replace a doctor’s opinion.

Know that it’s normal to have fears – there is no simple way to prepare for parenthood and all new parents (yes Moms too!) have some concerns or fears about their new role.

Learn as much as you can about your baby’s daily routine and offer to help out with activities you are comfortable doing.

Make “Daddy Time” a special time every day by spending one-on-one time talking, reading or singing to the baby – work with Mom to build these activities into the daily routine.

Offer to attend your baby’s doctors’ visits whenever possible – it helps you learn about your baby and provides a second set of ears to hear what the doctor has to say.

Be actively involved in providing a safe environment for the baby – help keep an eye out for safety hazards.

Make sure your baby is never exposed to second-hand smoke and has a drug free place to live.

Be gentle with the baby – never shake your baby or toss them in the air.

Be mindful of how you talk and act around the baby – a gentle voice and kind gestures are always best.

Support from Mom to Dad

The following information is to be used as a guide to and at the discretion of the end-user and should not replace a doctor’s opinion.

Ask Mom to teach you to do things you may not know how to do yet – this way you can help out and support her as you learn about your new baby.

Once you’re comfortable, offer to watch the baby so Mom can get some extra rest – this gives you time with the baby while supporting Mom as well.

Take care of yourself, get regular check-ups and exercise daily – work to stay healthy for the newest member of the family.

Set a good example and keep smoking and drugs out of your baby’s home.

Talk with Mom about how she feels about herself after her pregnancy – she may need your support and encouragement to resume intimacy and sex since things like her self-image and her body may have changed.

Treat Mom to small gifts and simple gestures that tell her that you care about her – these will help her understand that she is still special to you even if she is feeling tired and her self-image has changed.

Emotional aspects for Dad

The following information is to be used as a guide to and at the discretion of the end-user and should not replace a doctor’s opinion.

Especially in the first few weeks after birth, use compassion when dealing with both Mom and baby. They both have just been through a difficult experience and your compassion will go a long way in supporting them as they move into the next part of their journey.

You may often find yourself in new and challenging situations where you have the choice to either laugh or cry – choose humour, it helps everyone survive and thrive during challenging times.

Life doesn’t always prepare us for our role as a parent so as a new Dad you will often find yourself in new situations with no rulebook – rise to the occasion by using your creativity and imagination to overcome new challenges.

Remember that patience is a virtue – this is especially true when you have a newborn, so remember to slow down, take a deep breath and relax before you react to trying situations.

Always keep in mind that much of what you are doing in the early days after the birth of your baby is a form of service for both baby and Mom – don’t see it as a negative, rather see it as a time for you to develop a new leadership role as you offer yourself in service to others.

Dad comforting a crying baby

The following information is to be used as a guide to and at the discretion of the end-user and should not replace a doctor’s opinion.

As a first step, always make sure your baby has been fed and changed and that they are comfortable – if so then go on to the next steps to soothe them.

Swaddling: holding a baby close can help them feel more secure, so snuggle them in a soft blanket.

Side/Stomach: holding your baby on their side or stomach may help calm them.

Shhh: making this noise often helps sooth your baby.

Sucking: is very comforting for your baby, so if it’s not feeding time, give them a pacifier to suck on.

Swinging: gentle movement is often soothing to a baby, so gently rock them in your arms or put them safely in an infant swing.

Remember that even though it may be frustrating, it’s important for you to be patient and gentle with your baby. Use this time to bond with your baby and allow Mom a much-needed break from her role as a caregiver.

Getting Dad involved

The following information is to be used as a guide to and at the discretion of the end-user and should not replace a doctor’s opinion.

Talk with Dad about his thoughts, feelings and concerns regarding his role in caring for your newborn – this will help you understand his comfort level.

Get Dad involved in your baby’s care – he may need help in learning how to hold the baby or change diapers so include him in as many of the day-to-day activities as you can.

Have Dad help with a night feeding when possible – if you are breast feeding consider pumping a feeding ahead so he can take one feeding for you during the night. Have him talk, read or sing to the baby every day – build these activities into your baby’s daily routine.

Involve Dad in doctors’ appointments whenever possible.

Ask Dad to help you with household activities so you can rest – he may need you to tell him where you need his help the most.

Engage Dad in baby proofing the house – share your safety measures with him so he can be a partner in creating a safe and smoke-free environment.

Strengthening Mommy-Daddy team

The following information is to be used as a guide to and at the discretion of the end-user and should not replace a doctor’s opinion.

Teamwork is important and makes the process much easier for everyone, so work out ways to share the load.

Know that it’s normal to have worries and fears – many first-time parents feel overwhelmed by the changes and new responsibilities, so talk to each other about your feelings and concerns.

Learn from each other – you each come to the role of a parent with different skill sets and backgrounds, so be supportive of your partner and help teach them what you know and be open to learning from them as well.

Ask questions, since no one can know everything as new parents – connect with people you know and trust like family, friends and doctors.

Do some research if you can’t find someone who is a good resource – make use of places like your local library or trusted internet sites (avoid sites whose information may not be credible – for health information look for certified sites like those with HON certification).

Enjoy the moment, because time flies by way to fast when you have a baby – make sure to spend some special time with just the 3 of you every day.

Make time for yourselves as a couple – enlist the help of family and friends or find a babysitter so you can continue to build your relationship with each other.

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