Why new Dads need your support too

It's natural that mom and baby are the centre of attention after birth. They do all the hard work, after all! But let's not forget the role that fathers play in a baby's early life. It turns out that men undergo a few changes after becoming fathers too (their brains rewire, according to a scientific study), so we must take into account their emotional state as well.

New moms need a lot of rest and support, and getting that from a partner can make a big difference to their mental and physical well-being. Whether by supporting them through labour and birth, or by taking turns burping and changing the baby, Dads can really lighten what seems like a monumental task. 

A few reasons why we must remember to support new Dads too.

These are a few reasons why we must remember to support new Dads too:

They're scared.

And that's an understatement. If you're a mom, you may recall this feeling too. Despite carrying your baby for nine months, you still probably felt scared of the responsibility of taking care of a newborn. Well, Dads feel that way too, and even more so, because little guidance comes their way. They just have to watch and learn, and yes, they make mistakes like us moms too. 

They're confused.

When the baby is finally home, Dads aren't sure how much and what exactly their responsibilities are. They want to do their bit, but also don't want to 'get in the way' of mother-baby bonding. But let me tell you from experience - newborns begin to bond with their Dads in days, so they should get every opportunity to be with the baby (and let mom rest!). 

They didn't know it would be this hard.

So, they learned how to change nappies, and swaddle a baby, but like new moms, they are tired too. They hardly get sleep, and while moms at least have maternity leave, Dads get very little time to adjust to their new life, and this can be quite draining. 

They hardly know their partners anymore.

I'm sure there are times when new Dads feel that they left their wives behind in the hospital. Naturally, women think very differently once they become moms. They also feel exhausted, and frustrated with the demands of a newborn. This is also a time when Dads can feel left out, or feel guilty for not doing enough to help.

They're expected to stay sane.

As I've mentioned above, a mom isn't in her best state of mind after having a baby, so the responsibility of staying sane and making all the practical decisions falls upon the Dad. It can't be easy to do that with a wailing infant and a zombie wife. The pressure on Dads to do everything as before can be a lot.

They won't ask for help.

Just like they won't ask for directions, Dads will rarely ask their friends or family for help with managing the home. It then falls upon family and friends to offer support, and volunteer to bring meals or help in whatever way they can.

So, when you visit a home with a new baby, please do remember to talk to the new Dad, put your hand on his shoulder and say he'll do fine. Especially if it's the first time, he probably needs someone to talk to, and tell him that he's going to make a good father.

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