Are you a new daddy? Well, dads are important, too. Here's what we think every new dad should know.
The first weeks with a new baby is not only stressful for new mommies, but for new daddies, too. Prepare yourself by following these general guidelines:
- Be extra supportive and caring to your spouse. She is not only physically and emotionally exhausted from the birthing process, but her hormones are all out of whack too. A new mommy is flooded with hormonal changes as well as changes in her sleep, diet, and activity. This can cause feelings of anxiousness, sadness, frustration, and feeling overwhelmed with her new duties. Reassure your spouse that her feelings are normal and assist her in any way that you can. Just knowing that you are there for her and behind her 100% is a tremendous support.
- Be sure to compliment your spouse whenever possible.
- Ask your partner how you can help. Offer to help feed the baby, change diapers, give the baby a bath, or take care of your baby while mommy relaxes and catches up on some much needed sleep.
- Help out with the normal household chores. Do the dishes, wash the laundry, cook or order food, and take out the trash
. This gives mommy extra time to rest which will give her the strength that she needs to care for your precious little angel.
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- If possible, try to take the first 1-2 weeks after your baby is born off of work to help mommy care for your baby and to bond with your newborn. If you cannot take off of work, arrange for another family member or friend to stay with your partner while you are working. Hiring a housekeeper, postpartum doula, or a nurse/nanny for the baby can also be very helpful in the first few weeks.
- The first few weeks after your baby is born, EVERYONE will want to come by to see the new baby. Be both your baby's and your spouse's advocate and limit the number of visitors in a given day. Try to group visitors together, so mommy has enough time to sleep and doesn't feel like she has to entertain everyone all day long. Also, be mommy's secretary and answer all the calls from your friends and family.
With support and a little TLC, this transition can be smooth for the both of you. Being emotionally and physically involved in your baby's care will show you how important you are to both your new baby and your spouse.
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Author : Diba Tillery RN, BSN, IBCLC, CPST