Pregnancy and Motherhood

June 8, 2019

How to Incorporate Dads in Early Parenting

The first few weeks with your newborn are so incredibly special – not only did you just bring home this bundle of joy, but your family and life are forever changed because of it. When my husband and I found out we were having a little girl, we were in shock as we were almost positive it was a boy, and my husband just always imagined himself coaching a boy’s tee ball team, playing rough together, and enjoying matching boy outfits. He began to feel a little disconnected from my pregnancy journey because he didn’t know how to parent a girl, being that he grew up in a home full of boys, so it was important for me to find ways for him and I to prepare for this life change together.

With Father’s Day just around the corner, I’m sharing my favorite ways to bring dad’s into the pregnancy and parenthood journey, and how to give them their own little spotlight to shine as a parent with you!

Give Them Awesome Gear

One of my husband’s biggest complaints when we found out we were having a girl is that everything we owned from now on was going to be pink and girly – but that’s not totally true. I myself am not a pink and princessy person, but he especially couldn’t imagine carrying around a girly stroller or diaper bag. I did a lot of research online to find alternatives for him, and he fell in love with Tactical Baby Gear. As a veteran and licensed firearms dealer, he loved the concept of masculine, military style baby gear specifically tailored for dads who aren’t looking for pink. From the minute he opened the package and unpacked his gear, he was dying to load it up and take it out on the town, and he especially loves changing out the patches and accessories to customize it. Of course, he just HAD to have the matching baby carrier too!

Interested in exploring more of what Tactical Baby Gear has to offer the dad in your life? Explore their site and score 20% off for Father’s Day with code FATHERSDAY2019!

Take Pre-Natal Classes Together

When I was pregnant, I’ll admit that I was having some anxiety about becoming a mother. My exposure to babies, let alone newborns, was incredibly limited, so taking some pre-natal courses about infant and child care was important to me. Even though my husband knew a lot about children after having many younger siblings, doing the classes together helped us to bond and be on the same page regarding what to do since my husband came from a very different upbringing than myself. Some other great class ideas I wish we had time to take include childbirth and breastfeeding classes, both offering information for moms and dads about these different scenarios.

Give Him The Opportunity To Feed Them

Breastfeeding is something that falls exclusively on the moms, but allowing yourself time to step away and giving dad an opportunity to feed them helps to improve their involvement and bonding during the newborn stage. After many struggles to breastfeed, I found myself pumping in the hospital just to have something for our daughter to eat, but I quickly realized this was a great decision because my husband had an opportunity to bond with her early. This opportunity, on top of growing difficulties I experienced breastfeeding, led me to the decision to exclusively pump. Now, my husband can help out when I need him to, while also spending equal time with our daughter, rather than her relying solely on me when she begins to throw a fit for food. Although pumping isn’t always as convenient as breastfeeding, it does give us the freedom to coparent and equally bond, which is more important to me and she is still getting the same nutrients since breastmilk is being given.

Let Them Spend Time Alone Together

As a new mom, I want to be able to be there for every whimper and cry from our daughter, but learning to walk away and leave my husband with her is great for all three of us in the equation. Not only do I get time to recharge and relax, whether it’s to nap or run errands, but he gets time to understand her routine, her mannerisms and be involved in parenting together. We’re both going to be working parents and once I go back to work, we’re each going to have days when we’re home with her alone, so being on the same page and equally prepared to take care of her is important, and starting that habit early will help us both feel comfortable.