Major Responsibilities of an Expectant Father
Every woman appreciate the participation and involvement of father during pregnancy. Father can become constant support for the mother throughout pregnancy. As a father your role is to know and understand mother's health and to facilitate her in every possible manner.
Though woman remains focus of attention throughout these months because she is the one who is carrying the baby but father too has emotions and he should have knowledge of every change that is occurring throughout 9 months. He should also make the mother sure that he is worried about her health and baby's growth and he is interested in knowing everything.
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Sharing quality time More than ever pregnancy is the time when there is demand of sharing and understanding with your spouse. Healthy pregnancy requires perfect chemistry between the two. If husband is too busy at the workplace or with friends, mother will feel neglected and dejected and would not take care of her own health and that of the baby. It isn't necessary that they spend several hours together, as it is almost impossible in today's society where in most cases both mother and father are employed, but the time they spend together should be of worth.
Quantity of time can increase on weekends when you can go out for some recreation too. In case mother's health is not well during pregnancy and she can not afford to go outside spouse can make arrangement for recreation inside the house to make her feel better. Taking dinner together, going out for a walk or enjoying your favorite movie together can be the best use of time you can share with your spouse during pregnancy.
Discussing health issues Every on and off husband should discuss with wife about her health concerns and that of the baby. This will make mother feel that there is someone who is worried for her and will become more responsible for her pregnancy issues. Father should know about any extra care or caution that need to be taken in order to be on the safe side.
Father should also consult with the doctor about sexuality during pregnancy as there can be some cautions to take by the mother and father during pregnancy. It is better to know in advance what is good for the mother and baby's health and what is not.
Making financial preparation Financial needs grow in pregnancy. Throughout the pregnancy doctors checkup, tests and medication puts greater financial responsibility on father's shoulders. In case of emergency admission in hospital more amount of money will be required. Contingency planning is required on the part of father so that he can meet the emergent as well as unemergent needs successfully.
For delivery and hospitalization during delivery extra finance will be required. Father should also take into consideration that delivery can be normal or a C-Section can also be required so for both he should have to be prepared.
Getting informed about health concerns Every woman has different physiology and every pregnancy is different so the health issues are. Some pregnancies are so sound that the mother may not go through any major health problem but in most of the cases major and minor problems keep on surfacing during different months.
Father should attend doctor's visits in order to know about mother's health in each month. Otherwise he should talk to the mother for any health problem and should take care of it. Some women go through severe or minor vomiting, indigestion and constipation which can interfere in diet pattern. Father should know what and which food would be suitable in this case as she needs to take recommended nutrients each day. Substitute foods should be eaten which do not cause vomiting but provide full nourishment. Some women develop gestational diabetes which can also cause big trouble in diet as it is quite serious health issue and can be dangerous for the baby too so father should talk to the doctor about which food will give full nourishment but will not aggravate the problem.
Attending doctor's visits Though it is not always possible for the father to be available on every doctor's visit but it is best to be there. Going along with the mother will boost her confidence and will develop better relationship between the two. She will feel comfortable with the spouse more than she can be with anyone else.
Understanding spouse's emotional health Emotional health can also become a big problem during pregnancy. Many women go through emotional problems during pregnancy which can worsen physical problems too. Father's role in maintaining emotional stability is greatest as his sharing and understanding can be an invaluable support for the mother.
Fear, anxiety, stresses and depression can be dangerous for the health. To some extent every mother is conscious about her pregnancy and this consciousness sometimes become so high that it develops into anxiety or depression. Severe anxiety or stress can cause physical problems too and sometimes even if there is no physical problem due to your mental state you feel ill, weak and fatigued all the time. Overcoming this anxiety or depression is important. Father should talk to the doctor separately in case it is becoming worse and worse.
Taking out time for recreation Some time every week or every month, depending on the availability of time, can be spend outside or inside the house in some entertainment or recreation. This recreation will help in changing the mental state of the mother if she is feeling depressed or anxious for her pregnancy.
Helping wife in house chores When mother is not feeling well father can help her in having all the chores done. House chores is not only her responsibility especially if she is employed too, in this case, Its better to share responsibilities inside the house too like they are sharing outside responsibilities. Mother will get extra time to take some rest if father will help her in household tasks.
Becoming a good friend A good friend knows what his/her friend needs, he/she is the best person with whom you can share, is always available when you need him, and is the best support in case of any trouble. I am not going to write essay on good friend:D rather I want to say that only a good friend is the person who can be best support at any moment of life as well as in pregnancy for the mother. So the father should develop good friendship with the mother in order to be helpful to her. In case this is first pregnancy developing good friendship is important because it will help in building strong and long lasting relationship between husband and wife..
Take care of mothers diet pattern Doctor will tell the mother what she needs most in pregnancy and even what she needs particularly in each month of pregnancy. Role of father is to provide everything and to motivate her to eat healthy food which is her need. Unhealthy food can be dangerous for the health of mother as well as baby. Some mothers are too careless regarding their own health and they do not understand that taking proper diet is not only good fro them but for the baby, father should persuade her to be careful about diet.
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While all the above mentioned points should be taken into consideration, some things should not be done as your spouse is pregnant.
The DON'TS of Pregnancy:
Become overprotective While we all become overprotective sometimes when it is about our close relations but becoming overprotective never works rather can worsen problems. Best approach is to be protective but with a moderation so that mother feels good and at the same time she does not get worried for any slight change in her body or health.
Treat pregnancy as an ailment Pregnancy is not an ailment it is just part of life and something for which you feel good rather than thinking that you are ill. Don't treat your wife as a sick person just take extra care of her. Although if there are severe problems during pregnancy like gestational diabetes or hepatitis father should take care of mother greatly but still do not blame pregnancy for any problem.
Force her to leave routine work As pregnancy is not an ailment it does not call for leaving routine work and staying on bed all the time, rather doctors prefer to tell expectant mothers to be more active so that they can have normal baby birth. Do not force mother to be on bed all the time and avoid routine work. While mother is busy in routine work she feels more comfortable and negative thinking will not come in her mind.
Become gender biased Thinking too much about the gender of the baby to come can cause depression and fear in the mind of the mother. Its better to be as neutral as far as your liking about sex of the baby can be. Do not let mother think that baby's gender will affect your happiness.
Dictate mother's freedom Mother should have choice to live according to her own will as she better knows how she will feel comfortable during pregnancy. If she thinks that she can work outside comfortably let her do that and if she says that she can not continue her job don't force her to go out for the job.
Become over-possessive about child's health Child's health is a sensitive issue but do not try to be over-possessive. Talk to the mother casually about how she feels and what changes she notices in her physical state but do not give too much stress on becoming possessive about each change. These changes are normal part of pregnancy and one should not take them too light or too stressfuly.
Delay doctor's visits Doctor's visits are very very important especially in first pregnancy when you know nothing about the changes that are occurring in the mother's body. Be punctual about doctor's visits and do not delay or miss them.
Force her for anything Forcing and dictating mother all the time to do this and don't do this will not work rather she will get fed up. Let her know by herself what care and caution she needs to take at each step of pregnancy.
Become aggressive over small issues Fighting and aggression can cause stressful situation in pregnancy. Try to avoid fights on small issues rather try to be peaceful so that mother can take care of herself and baby properly.
Prioritize friends and co-workers over family Family especially mother should have to be your first focal point during pregnancy. Spending too much time outside with friends, mates and co-workers can ruin your relationship and mothers health too. Stay connected with your family even if you are away from home so that they can feel warm and mother feels happy.