What the heck is happening to my partner? (And your partner may be wondering what the heck is happening to himself!) Truth is you are the one that is supposed to be pregnant, but your spouse seems to be having the same symptoms as you do. Is he just trying to steal some of the attention back, feeling a little left out – or are dad’s pregnancy symptoms something that is REAL?
According to experts, around 90% of all men have some pregnancy symptom of their own while their partner is pregnant. This is so prevalent that experts have called this ‘couvade syndrome,’ which translated means “WE ARE PREGNANT!” This phenomenon, where your partner seems to be sharing in your increased appetite, morning sickness, and may even be gaining weight at a rapid pace, is heralded by sympathy pains and anxiety.
For many men, this is their way of dealing with the anxiety that coincides with their partner’s pregnancy. Experts believe that many men have a hard time sharing their pregnancy fears, and pre-parenting worries with their partner, so the stress manifests in physical symptoms that often mimic their pregnant partners. Additionally, this anxiety can cause nausea, or ‘morning sickness,’ and may even have your partner reaching for the donuts and potato chips more often than not.
It can also be a way that your partner sympathizes with you. After all, they certainly don’t want you to have all the fun! So when your back hurts, you feel sick – or you have an insatiable midnight appetite, so does he!
If your partner is gaining weight along side of you, it may be because of rising cortisol levels that are triggered by stress more than the fact that they are grabbing for seconds alongside of you. Increases in cortisol can also make your partner feel sleepy and sluggish, have a reduced sex drive and be prone to mood swings. Just. Like. You!
While it is fun (and sort of liberating) that men, too, are prone to pregnancy symptoms – the reality is that they aren’t also carrying the cumbersome weight of the baby. But they may be carrying the weight of the world on their shoulders as they prepare to become parents. Pregnancy changes everything. It changes relationships and it changes the future in many ways. It is only normal and natural for your partner to have a symptomatic reaction of sorts to the changes that are coming. As you progress through your pregnancy – getting larger and closer to your due date – your partner may have increased pregnancy symptoms triggered by stress.
The best thing to do is to keep the lines of communication OPEN! Make sure that you and your partner talk to one another and discuss the future together. Often, his opinions become overshadowed by the needs of the pregnant partner, and in their attempts to make sure you are happy and satisfied and stress free, their own needs get looked over. So talk to one another. Laugh together. Be optimistic about the future.
Written By Stef, Mom of 4 @Momspirational
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 2018. All rights reserved.