If your partner is experiencing concerns about your pregnancy, be sure to discuss his new-dad fears with him, without judging him, or making him feel he is not being supportive of you while you are pregnant, because he is having and expressing such fears.
Experiencing some level of fear and anxiety about pregnancy, childbirth and the reality of being a parent is perfectly normal for both the woman experiencing the pregnancy and her partner.
Naturally, your experience of pregnancy is very different than his and because things are happening to your body you are continually researching being pregnant and becoming well-informed on your pregnancy. Encouraging him to do the same and sharing what you are discovering about your pregnancy in your pregnancy journal will help him understand what is happening to you and what role he might play. Encouraging him to come along with you to doctor/midwife visits, or attend antenatal classes will also help reassure him.
Write a birth plan together so he feels part of the decisions-making process and fully understands the support you are hoping he can give you during the labour and birth.
Do you know any other dads? Encourage your partner to talk to them about their own experiences of pregnancy, labour, birth and fatherhood – it may help to hear how other guys have coped and may give him his own ideas about what…or what not…to do.
Remember to support him, too. Your pregnancy isn’t only affecting you. His life is also changing in a major way. Be understanding of that and try to ensure you maintain some special time as a couple that isn’t just spent talking about the baby.
Reassure him of your faith in him as the father to your developing baby and remind him that you are in it together – that as a team you will help each other get through it all.
This article was written by Claire Halliday for Kidspot NZ.