Page 39 - Great Expectations

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Great Expectations – 39
Fathers or Partners
While you are pregnant, the father or partner is also going
through changes, anxieties, fears, doubts, joys and stresses
– just like you! Try to include your partner in the pregnancy
as much as possible. This can be one of the closest emotional
times in your relationship, so take time to discuss your
expectations and fears. Attend birthing classes together,
and try to make your partner a part of your daily exercises,
like an evening walk. Visit your healthcare professional
together and encourage questions about the pregnancy. As
always, communication is important because your partner
may feel left out and not really a part of the pregnancy.
Talk about the fears, concerns and delights both of you are
experiencing. Pregnancy is a special time for both of you.
Other Children
If this is not your first child, give other children advance notice about the new baby. They will become curious as your
pregnancy progresses. Do not take their fears lightly. They may feel left out and have questions and worries about
their position in the family. They need to be reassured before and after the birth that they are still loved. Consider
including your partner and children in prenatal visits to the healthcare provider.
Do not tell your children only how great having a
baby is going to be. Tell them the truth! Babies are
a lot of fun and a lot of trouble, too. They cry and
are messy. Still, they are wonderful.
Prepare your children for the reality of having a
new baby in the house, and there will be less room
for fear and resentment. Ask your child, “How do
you feel about this baby?” before and after the
birth. Then just listen. And do not say, “That’s silly”
or “You shouldn’t feel that way.” Children usually
have very mixed feelings about a new baby. Try
including them in the pregnancy by letting them
help buy baby clothes, paint the nursery and plan
for the baby’s arrival. Do not be shy about your
body. Let them see how it is expanding. Pregnancy
is a beautiful experience, so do not hide it.
Ask your healthcare
provider about an
appropriate time
to bring the older
children to the
office so they can
hear the baby’s
heartbeat.
Caring for the
Rest of the Family