Fathers-to-be get congratulated about the upcoming arrival, but that doesn’t mean they don’t also feel lost and ignored. Although it’s true that women deserve all the attention and care they are getting, this can cause strain and tension in the partnership when dad is left out. Once a father-to-be understands what to expect during his wife’s pregnancy, he can become more involved and not feel so left out, says clinical social worker Leonard Boulanger.
It’s perfectly normal for a first-time dad to be worried and fearful that he will not be able to provide for his family. The woman may decide not to go back to work, and this can put a great strain on the man. Not only is the father expected to provide financially, he is supposed to support his wife emotionally, too. Men may also fear that they will be replaced by the baby in terms of intimacy. Rest assured that all of these fears are quite common among men.
Like birds that build a literal nest for their young, a pregnant woman has a strong sensation to turn the home into a nest as well. An expectant dad needs to prepare for more stuff entering the home. He will see a crib, changing table, swing, stroller, car seat, toys, baby clothes and nursery decorations. Dad should probably plan on doing some painting, too, because pregnant women should not breathe in paint fumes.
Sex during pregnancy is usually okay, unless the pregnancy is a high-risk one. If there is a risk of miscarriage or preterm delivery, the doctor may advise no intercourse during the pregnancy. Women go through many hormonal changes during pregnancy, any of which can affect your sex life. Some women may not have any desire, while some may have a lot. Some positions will be more comfortable than others. The missionary position is not a particularly good one, especially during the later stage of pregnancy.
Many women want and expect her partner to accompany her to prenatal visits. Women see their health care provider once a month until the last month, when they go in every week. If the husband can’t go to all these appointments, the two most worthwhile ones are the first appointment and the one where mom-to-be gets an ultrasound, according to WebMD. During the initial visit, the doctor will discuss general advice on having a healthy pregnancy and can address any questions either of you have. During the ultrasound, the parents get to see their baby for the first time, an exciting moment for any parent.
Labor and Delivery
Most men plan to be in the labor and delivery room with their partner. A first baby takes 12 to 24 hours, according to WebMD. Men should prepare to support the woman during this time by helping her with her breathing, rubbing her back, bringing her ice chips, rubbing her feet and even being yelled at. Women are experiencing great pain and are not always in control of their emotions at this time.
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