Becoming a parent is life-changing, and from the moment you hold your child for the first time, life will never be the same again. For the mother, life changed as soon as she discovered she was pregnant. While you may be able to go about your business unaffected by the pregnancy, your partner doesn’t have that luxury. It’s hard to forget a pregnancy when you’re the one with the bump.
You can’t give birth for her, or carry the pregnancy to term, but there are things you can do to support your pregnant partner:
Many women find pregnancy to be an overwhelming time emotionally, and it’s not just the hormones. Becoming a parent can be daunting, and some women feel scared of the process of giving birth. Make sure your partner knows she can talk to you, and be sure to listen and offer support when she does. If she is scared of giving birth, reassure her that she’ll be great. If she’s worried about becoming a mother, tell her why you know she’ll make an amazing mum.
Your partner is probably worried about you too, so do talk to her about your fears. Chances are, you’re worried about lots of the same things. Common concerns for expectant parents include the cost of raising a child, the impact upon your relationship, and the fear of not being good parents. They say a problem shared is a problem halved, so why not put that theory to the test?
Take on extra duties around the home. If your partner is struggling with exhaustion or aches and pains, she may be struggling to keep up with her busy life. You can take some of the pressure off her by helping out more around the home.
Growing a person is hard work, and can really take it out of you, so make sure your partner is getting enough sleep. It’s not easy for a heavily pregnant woman to find a comfortable sleeping position and fall asleep without having to go to the bathroom, and if by some miracle she does manage it, you don’t want to be the person who accidentally wakes her up. Let her have lie-ins on weekends, naps on the sofa and as much sleep as she needs.
In most couples, the expectant mum reads all the literature, and the dad receives a short summary. Show an interest in the pregnancy, birth and baby information your partner shares with you. You could even do some reading of your own. There’s plenty of information out there. Your partner will want you prepared for the birth, so make sure you know what to expect and how you can be useful on the day.
Your partner will probably nest towards the end of her pregnancy. This could mean dusting high shelves, pulling out furniture or rearranging the spice rack. You can nest too, and help to get your home prepared for the baby’s arrival. One job that many dads-to-be take pride in, is decorating the nursery. Get involved with selecting furniture, colour schemes and toys to adorn your baby’s bedroom. Seeing you get into this will help your partner to feel more relaxed and ready for the baby too.
What else are you doing to support your pregnant partner?
Written by Fiona, proud owner of a toddler, @fiona_peacock
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a trained medical doctor. Health & Parenting Ltd disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information, which is provided to you on a general information basis only and not as a substitute for personalized medical advice. All contents copyright © Health & Parenting Ltd 2017. All rights reserved.