How Dads can be Involved in Pregnancy

When you’re expecting, you may feel like everything is changing in your life…really fast!  Well, it may not be as obvious, but things are changing for your husband as well.  His belly may not be protruding as much as yours (although some expectant dads do grow along side their wives) and he may not experience every jolting hormonal stage (actually, he probably will but on the opposite end from you), but he is wrapping his head and his heart around having a baby too.  To help keep both of you on the same page as you grow and change to prepare for your baby, we’re sharing how dads can be involved in pregnancy.

Announce Together:  Sometimes moms-to-be are so excited to share the news of their pregnancy, they leave dad out in the cold.  It took two to get you pregnant so the announcement should be about both of you, and the baby of course!  Tell friends and family together or come up with a clever way to share the joyous news such as a funny video, picture or practical joke.

Invite Him to All Prenatal Appointments:  He may not be able to make every one of them, but encourage your husband to be at the big ones including all ultrasounds.  Seeing your bump grow is terrific, but watching your baby flip and her little heartbeat in an ultrasound is out of this world for dads.  Remind him when an appointment includes and ultrasound so he can try to be present.  Also, allow him to ask questions, especially about his own concerns or symptoms he sees in you that you may not realize.

How Dads can be Involved in PregnancyLet Him Feel the Excitement:  Share your baby’s movements with dad to help him experience the joys of pregnancy.  When you’re together and your baby is active, let him gently place his hands on your belly to feel the baby move.  He can even engage the baby in a back-and-forth game of kicking and punching as long as it doesn’t cause you any pain, of course.

Make Decisions Together:  Obviously you’re going to decide on a name together, but dads can be involved in pregnancy way beyond naming your child.  Even if he’s not the decorating type or isn’t too concerned about color schemes for your playroom, ask his opinion and help when decorating the nursery and registering for car seats, learning toys and other baby supplies.  He may surprise you by caring more than you think.  Either way, he’ll feel good getting to lend his voice to fun decisions for your baby.

Celebrate Together…or Separately:  Some parents-to-be opt for a couple’s shower, which is a fun way to get all of your friends together to share in this exciting time in your life.  If showers are not your husband’s bag, let your girlfriends throw you a baby shower and get his guy friends to give him a dad party, often called dadchelor party.  He can have one last hurray with friends before the baby arrives.

Learn about Babies Together:  It’s a great idea to take prenatal classes to learn about childbirth, breastfeeding, baby care and CPR/First Aid.  Your husband will need to learn about all of these topics as well so plan to attend prenatal classes together.  Yes, he should even come to the breastfeeding class because you’ll want all the support you can get when the time comes to feed your baby.  Plus, prenatal classes are a great place to meet other expecting parents in your area.

Exercise Together:  If your hubby’s bump is trying to keep up with yours, get active together.  Obstetricians recommend daily exercise for pregnant women, although there are a few limitations.  Grab your guy and go for a walk or a swim.  You can even hit the gym together.  Keep each other on track and challenged with your workouts so you’re both healthy and energized when your baby arrives.

Share these ideas of how dads can be involved in pregnancy with your husband and get excited about welcoming your new baby together!