Five more things every father should do during pregnancy

In my previous article I shared these five things that you can do to help your partner during pregnancy:

  1. Give a lot of compliments
  2. Give lots of massages
  3. Rub tummy butter on the bump
  4. Practice communicating
  5. Join a group
Man and woman holding baby shoes
Image credit: Drew-Hays on Wunderstock (license)

Here are five more things to help your partner out:

1. Share in the restrictions

I don’t know if you’ve ever tried giving up anything for a period of time. Every so often I try giving up sugar and it’s torture if you’re with someone who is eating your favourite snack. It makes it a lot easier if you’re doing it with someone though.

I made the decision that I’d give up the things that my partner couldn’t have. I did pretty well at it too until we went out for a celebration meal and I accidentally ordered rare steak. My wife was very gracious about it though and definitely appreciated that I gave up alcohol and undercooked meat during the rest of the pregnancy.

2. Go for walks together

It’s really helpful for the woman to stay fit and active during pregnancy. Labour is very physically demanding, so keeping strong in the lead up to it helps a lot. Your partner will get more and more uncomfortable as time goes on, so be sensitive, but try to encourage some gentle exercise to keep up her strength, fitness and endurance.

3. Know the plan

Whether you both decide to have a home birth, hospital birth or planned caesarian, make a plan. Figure out what you want the ideal situation to look like, and what you want to happen in different circumstances if it doesn’t go to plan. Make sure you know your partners wishes so that you can advocate for them when in labour.

We wanted to have a home birth and managed to do 50 hours at home before having to go into hospital for the last push (pun intended). Knowing the plan and my wife’s wishes meant that I was able to advocate for us to try every possible option before having to resort to going to theatre. We managed it at the last moment thanks to a ventouse and a brilliant midwife. 

Knowing the plan also helped during the home stage as I was able to remember the different pain relief options and suggest them when things were getting difficult. Speaking of which the tens machine was a lifesaver for us.

4. Know what happens after birth

So much emphasis is placed on the birth that it’s easy to forget that you’re going to have a little person that you need to look after. Learn how to do all the practical stuff, but also have some conversations together about what type of parents you want to be. Having an idea of what is important to you as parents will guide you well when you’ve been up all night and you can’t think clearly.

5. Do the chores

As your partner gets more and more pregnant, she may be too tired or physically unable to do some chores that she normally would do. There’s probably some things she does that you don’t know about, so try to take as much of her plate as you can. For my wife and I, our environment has a big impact on our mental well being, so having the house neat and tidy was a big help.

In summary, five more things that you can do to help your partner during pregnancy:

  1. Share in the restrictions
  2. Go for walks together
  3. Know the plan
  4. Know what happens after birth
  5. Do the chores


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