Just as your wife is thrilled and excited to give birth and be a mother, you too must be excited to become a father. To be a birth partner and to help with the arrival of your baby, you need to be prepared in advance.
Read through the ten tips below to confidently face those exciting moments.
- Help with Packing: Offer to help your wife in packing things that she would need at the hospital. You can also pack your own things that you will need at the hospital. A change of clothes and maybe even food to snack on will be useful.
- Inform the Doctor: These days, dads can be in the labour room. So, inform your doctor beforehand. This way, the doctor can also guide you on the dos and don’ts to be followed. If you prefer to cut the umbilical cord, inform the doctor beforehand.
- Discuss Preferences: Make sure that you discuss any preferences that your partner has with respect to birth plans before you arrive at the hospital. This will help you in communicating and taking decisions easily at the time of labour.
- Be Encouraging: Labour is very painful, and it will possibly be difficult for you to watch while your partner experiences labour pains. Encourage her by talking to her. If you have time before actual labour pains, go for walks together and to change positions often.
- Ensure Comfort: You can try to eliminate any disturbances in the environment that is causing anxiety. You can be calm and positive, as well as sensitive to her needs. Be prepared to run errands and get her what she wants.
- Be Informed: Attend prenatal classes, read or even speak with the doctor in order to understand the stages of labour and birth. You must be able to recognize when true labour starts and measure contractions. Read also about C-sections and understand the circumstances under which it may be suggested.
- Be Responsible: Whether it is before going to the hospital or at the hospital, be responsible and act responsible. Be ready to answer calls and be flexible to change certain decisions that were taken prior to reaching the hospital.
- Be Patient: This is probably the most important of all. You will have to be patient and understanding. Labour and childbirth can be very long and takes a lot of hard work. Be prepared for waiting with your partner.
- Emotional Support: The transition phase, which is the last stage of birth, can be powerful with intense contractions. Help her stay focused, and let her know that you are by her side. Touching, holding, hugging, breathing with her, can all give her confidence to see it through the whole process.
- Magical Moments: After the birth, she will be fatigued. But be there beside her. Hold the baby near her, if she is unable to hold by herself. Enjoy this miraculous moment. If allowed, capture the most joyous moment in your lives with your camera.