So, you’re about to be a dad. Or maybe, you’re about to be a dad…again. And while it’s no secret that there are countless items required in order to care for your bundle of joy, equally important is preparing for the sudden and unavoidable impact on your lifestyle, routine and relationship. As many new parents will attest, the rule book of good intentions usually goes out the window when the baby arrives. But it still doesn’t hurt to have a game plan in place.
If your wife or partner has decided to breastfeed your new baby, she has made a wonderful decision. Countless research studies have purported that the benefits of breastfeeding far outweigh those of formula feeding. Decreased symptoms of colic, better sleep and improved digestion are just a few advantages of breast milk. Moreover, this optimal nutrition provides your baby with antibodies that can provide protection against a host of diseases and illnesses. In fact, there are hundreds of ingredients in breast milk that cannot be replicated in formula. Although you may agree that “breast is best”, you may also be anxious in regards to what the breastfeeding process entails and how to support your partner. Your support while your partner breastfeeds is more valuable than you may realize, and fortunately, there are a number of ways you can help to make the breast feeding experience a positive one for the entire family.
The birth of child is a life-changing event for both the mother and the father, and although it’s the mother that carries and delivers the baby, the father has an equally important role to fill. By preparing for the experience together and by keeping the lines of communication open, both parents can lay a strong foundation for raising a healthy and happy child. Although the journey towards successful parenting requires a measure of sacrifice, a deep commitment and a shift in priorities, the positive results are well worth the effort.
One of the first things an expectant Dad learns is that a due date is purely a guess. Babies will come at any time, day or night. This is Dad’s first lesson in not being able to be in control. Reading books about baby care is helpful, but remember to take any advice in them with a grain of salt. Every baby is a perfectly unique little individual and guidelines about what they might do at a certain age are just that, guidelines. Little ones do not come with instructions. This is another of those first things that new Dads learn.