Guilty of treating your baby-bellied wife like a house of cards? Guilty of questioning her mystical midnight cravings? Reckon those aches and pains are phantom hallucinations?
If you said yes to any of those, you must have missed the memo on what to expect as a dad-to-be. But better late than never, eh? With this trusty guide, prepare to score some brownie points with the missus as you count down to D-day.
Go on, get the scoreboard ready!
On the Count Down to Fatherhood
Tip 1. Your Wife Isn’t a Delicate Darling
While she may be your darling, she certainly isn’t delicate. The truth is, pregnancy can take a massive physical toll on an expectant momma. But that doesn’t make her frail or fragile overnight. In fact, a fair deal of activity is considered healthy during pregnancy and doesn’t increase the risk of miscarriage, preterm labour or low birth weight. Quite the contrary, in fact. Encourage your wife to continue with activities she enjoyed pre-pregnancy.
Tip 2. Acknowledge the Changes
A pregnancy may not be physically evident until the second trimester, but that doesn’t mean that the first trimester doesn’t pull any duty. In reality, the first trimester is the one that presents the most internal changes, and these are likely to manifest as exhaustion, nausea and changes in the palate. Acknowledge these symptoms, embrace them and offer to help remedy them. Take over some of the household responsibilities to allow your wife more time to rest. If this is your first baby, serve as her sounding board for fears and worries. Then, help her find answers. If you have an older child, spend more time at home to keep your wife from exerting herself. Give her a back rub to help ease her pain, empathise and be sensitive. After all, you’re in this together.
Tip 3. Expect a Change In Intimacy
There is no pregnancy manual that tells you the intimacy level you can expect as a father-to-be. While some women experience a greater sex drive, some may lose the desire to be intimate. Prepare for varying levels of intimacy through your pregnancy and remember that hormonal changes play a major role in governing sex drive.
Tip 4. Offer Emotional Support
As your wife does a great job of growing your baby, it’s only fair that you focus your energies on keeping her heart and her belly happy. Pregnancy has a tendency to throw little surprises now and then; an episode of spotting, mild cramping, a throbbing back. Serve as an emotional backbone through all this. Indulge her, shower her with attention and affection and lift her up when she’s down. Pregnancy can tip an expectant momma’s emotional scale, so it’s important that you provide a rock-solid support system.
Tip 5. Monitor Mental Wellbeing
Another factor to be mindful of is mental health. Depression is a risk commonly tied to pregnancy, and it isn’t restricted to the postpartum phase alone. Up to one-fifth of pregnant women experience prenatal depression. In light of this, you must be aware and attuned to your wife’s emotions and raise an alarm if you sense something wrong. Symptoms of depression include insomnia, frequent crying and loss of interest in previously preferred activities. The road up to delivery can serve as a wonderful binding force, bringing you and your partner closer. Make the most of it by communicating well, checking in when you can and keeping her at the centre of all your decisions. Studies show that emotions during pregnancy can trickle down into an unborn child. A happy pregnancy, therefore, offers your baby the best start.
If there were a best husband trophy in the running, you’d want to win it now. And hey, the finish line is not far now; there’s only a little way to go!
If you found this article interesting and would like to know more, talk to a Cloudnine expert today!