Men in other circumstances.
Being a father is not so hard – becoming a father even more so.
Table of contents
What Does A Man Do In A Childbirth Preparation Course?
Together with his partner, he learns how to breathe during birth. Because together they are expecting a baby. However, the man expects his offspring differently than the woman. While the first signs of pregnancy appear quite soon in her case, it is not very concrete for the father-to-be for many weeks. He can put his hand on the woman’s belly and feel the growing life. But he has little to do with the physical changes of pregnancy.
Unless he belongs to that group of men whose becoming a father is reflected in weight gain, morning sickness or back pain. However, physicians and psychologists attribute such complaints to an exaggerated sympathy for the pregnant partner – as well as to fears and insecurities that the man processes physically: the so-called couvade syndrome.
For most men, pregnancy plays out mainly in the mind: What’s to become of our travel plans? Will the money be enough? Can I be a good father? How do I reconcile work and family? “Quite normal”, say fathers who have already experienced this adventure.
At first, it hits most men like a blow when they learn of their impending fatherhood. “Goodbye freedom!” many think, and fear that they will have difficulty coping with the new life situation.
What Distinguishes Men And Women In The Transition To Parenthood?
And What’s The Truth Behind The So-Called “Baby-In-The-Belly Envy”?
It is more difficult for men to settle into the role of parent than for women. In many cases, this has to do with the fear of having to restrict their accustomed “male freedoms” as providers and no longer being able to freely dispose of their own time. These feelings are usually more pronounced in the man than in the woman, who, parallel to her physical changes, also has to deal more concretely with the changes in everyday life.
In addition, many men feel helpless. Because they only learn everything about the pregnancy through their partner. “Baby-in-the-belly envy” does not mean, however, that the man would rather carry the child himself. However, having a pregnant partner makes it clear to him that she is capable of something that will never be possible for him. An often new but unconscious feeling.
Of course, during the nine months of pregnancy, the couple should once again enjoy togetherness, and each take time for personal interests. Nevertheless, man also wants to actively participate in the pregnancy.
How Can He Prepare Himself For His Role As A Father And For The Offspring?
First and foremost, he should deal with his attitudes and fears. Many people find it helpful to talk about this with friends and men from their circle of acquaintances. Perhaps they are in the same situation or can talk about their experiences. However, the man should also constantly remind himself of the positive feelings of becoming a father, which are in contrast to his worries.
He should discuss the upcoming changes with his partner in good time – financially, in the couple relationship or in leisure activities. A concrete plan on these points clears the head and makes room for anticipation. For men, this anticipation grows all the more when they can do something: Buy a stroller, get a Maxicosi, furnish the baby’s room and fill the shelves with diapers and onesies.
In addition, when the new family member arrives, the young father should also know about infant care and the needs of the little worm: A number of books, videos or CD-ROMs on these topics are even aimed specifically at expectant fathers.
Until the 1980s, men were not wanted in the delivery room at all. Things are different today. Most expectant fathers today are committed to the upcoming birth from the very beginning.
What Can You Recommend To Them In Terms Of Childbirth Preparation Courses And Birth?
I can only advise expectant fathers to get involved in choosing a childbirth preparation course: Today, many courses are offered that not only prepare couples for the birth together, but also address the fathers’ questions and concerns separately. Experience has shown that if the course includes group work without partners, it is easier for men to talk about the ups and downs of becoming a father.
Once they have established a good rapport, they should continue to use the contacts beyond the course and the birth to meet – with or without offspring – and talk about babies, relationships or their careers.
Being present at the birth itself is then a matter of honor for men. However, the naturalness with which the father is received in the delivery room today is often perceived as the norm. If a man fears that he will not be able to cope with the birth situation, it is important to take these concerns seriously and communicate them to his partner. After all, a half-heartedly promised or poorly prepared birth support is not helpful to anyone.
Talking to the midwife, getting to know the clinic and informing yourself about the media will help you prepare. At best, you can ask a new father from your circle of acquaintances about his experiences during childbirth. However, every birth is different. So no one can predict what He will have to do in the delivery room. However, the father can be sure: it will be an incomparable experience, where it counts – also for the partner – that man was there.