- Family and Parenting
A Father's Guide To Pregnancy
You walk in your house, your significant other walks out of the bathroom and say "Honey I'm pregnant". Your happy, nervous, excited and anxious. Now you have let says 7-9 months to prepare. As a male many things run through your head. Am I ready to be a dad? What about my time with friends? What about he cost? Wait I'm still like a big kid...and so on. Well you have an opportunity to prepare and during this time you can learn a lot and do alot to prepare youself for that moment when a child arrives.
A Bit About Me
Let me start out by saying I am not a writer, a self help guru or a parenting expert. What I am is a 27 year old married man and a proud father of two beautiful children. One beautiful little girl who turns 3 in may and a baby boy who is a 11 weeks old. During this time I have learned a lot about parenting and have some good tips and advice for any father or father to be. I may have had some advantages prior to my children as I have worked in the health care industry for 8 years, six of which was with the special needs population. So in some ways I have been parenting since I was 19 years old.
1. Think before you do
Please fathers to be think before you do. You have to understand although our lives are changing so our you wives, girlfriends and so forth. The big difference is they have a your child growing inside of them which means they have had to give up alto more then you. So before you come home with the 30 rack, sit down to smoke the cigar or complain about how much you have to do, JUST THINK!
Make life easier on your significant other and yourself. You want to have some drinks, meet your friends out go to a buddies house. Why make your significant other sit there and watch you do something she can't. Before you complain about having bbq food for the forth night in a row or running to the store a midnight for ice cream...remember who is carrying your child. The experiences we go through as fathers to be as different then what a women is going through. I promise you thinking about the little things will make the pregnancy so much easier.
2. Spend Time With Friends
Try and spend some time with friends. Go out to a bar, see a sporting event, play video games whatever it is you enjoy. Soon this time will not be so available to you. You have in reality 6-7 months of time where you can get in your man time. Enjoy this time but also use it to talk about becoming a dad. Even men who don't have kids (I was the first out of my friends) have questions, advice and so forth. SO this provides you a place to socialize and express concerns.
3. You will learn who friends are
This sounds wrong...like really your telling me having a child an impact my friends. No way my boys are my boys it is like guy code. This is not true. Some of your friends will not know how to handle the news. Some my make statements that end friendship. On the other handsome will become closer friends as well. Becoming a parent changes the game for the better. But you will learn that later. I have friends I never see anymore they found out I was having a child and it was over for them. I have others, like the best man from my wedding who has come over once a week for basically 3 years now to hang out with the kids. This is an experience that is challenging..seeing how friends react to the news.
There are alot of guides ou there you can read. Some of them are very good and honestly very helpful. I would recommend The Everything Father To Be Book and any of the What to Expect series. These books are helpful and easy reads. You can read a few pages and the go on with your day. But they provide great advice.
5. Help you Lady Nest
As it gets closer you will notice your women is "nesting". This is not my term it is a general term used for when women start preparing the home. You can help i this process which is brings some security to your significant other. Talk to her, help her decide how the babies room should be set up. Listen to what she needs and make it easy on her just take the initiate and do it.
6. Go to Classes
Where I am in Rhode Island all the hospitals offer great parenting classes. These classes provide education in a fun manner. Plus you are in a room with other first time parents so everybody feels the same. They had a parenting 10 course, breastfeeding course, Q and A course, Pet course (yes you need to prepare the animals). All these classes where helpful plus you meet some great people.
7. Get Excited
I have meet so many potential dads who almost seem to go into a depression. This is a sad site to see. Having a child is life changing but not in a bad way. Being a parent brings you joy and happiness. You will always have meaning in your life and unconditional love.
more to come....as I will work on making this a little series. Please if you have any questions, comments or concerns. Let me know. I am happy to address any topic I can that will help a potential dad.