Pregnancy is a period of change for husbands, too. It is completely normal for them to be emotionally and physically stressed, just like their wives. Here are a few ways to support them throughout the pregnancy:
1. Encourage and reassure him throughout
Being pregnant means constantly worrying about your physical well-being as well as a few mundane practical things. Your husband, on the other hand, is probably worried about your finances, the jobs he can do to support you, medical insurance, and trying to figure out the best way he can take care of you and the baby.
He’ll need all the encouragement he can get to show him that you believe in him and that you are proud of him. Reassure him that he’s making the right choices as he prepares for the growing family.
2. Be understanding
If you are first-time parents-to-be, the weight of impending parenthood is probably on his mind just as much as it is on yours. He’s probably wondering whether or not he’ll make a good father. This can cause him to act differently and completely overhaul some aspects of his life.
This is completely normal. It is your job to be understanding and see this as his way of adjusting to fatherhood.
Also, because he’s probably having a hard time processing what is going on with you, a lot of men respond to this lack of understanding by stepping back a little to assess the situation. When this happens, it may feel like they are backing away from you or deserting you when you need them, when it is really not the case. Understand that this is his way of dealing with the situation.
3. Tell him how much you appreciate his support
You are a team on this journey. Your husband needs to know how happy you are that they are there with you and going through this experience with you. You are going through a lot, but so is he. Sometimes, all he needs to hear is that his efforts are appreciated.
4. Be affectionate
Your husband still craves your attention and affection. Something as simple as a hug or holding hands can brighten up their entire day. So be generous with your affection and try to pay attention to him.
5. Make time to bond with him
Here are a few ideas that you can use to bond with your husband throughout your pregnancy:
- Go away for a weekend to just talk
- Keep him in the loop about your baby’s development week after week
- Spend a lazy day together, watching a movie or just hanging out as you bond
What husbands can do for themselves
If your wife is pregnant, you may feel abandoned and ignored. It may feel like you are the only one who is expected to do all the helping and showing up and giving. Your wife gets all the attention from friends and family and no one bothers to find out how you are doing. It is completely normal to feel this way from time to time.
It is also normal to feel nervous and scared about the impending delivery of your child and your role during labor. Here are some of the things you can do to support yourself:
- Communicate with your wife. Talk about how you are feeling, and let her tell you how she feels.
- Go to doctor visits and ask questions. Get involved in the process
- Talk about the role you want during labor and delivery. Do you want to be there? Do you feel anxious about being there? Decide together what’s best for both of you
- Talk to other parents. Let them share their experiences, feelings, and tips. You can also read about other people’s experiences online and what they did about it
- Make some time to take care of yourself. Exercise, spend time on your hobbies, and visit your friends to catch up