Mamas on Bedrest: What do Dads Need to Know?

January 13th, 2014

This is from “Rich” a Dad to be.

Hi, 

My wife is pregnant with our first child. What can I expect during the first and second trimesters of my wife’s pregnancy? What can I do to help? 

I love this!! It is SO important to include the dads in the pregnancy and so often they are pushed aside as we all try to meet the needs of the mamas and ensure a safe delivery of the baby. We have to remember, it’s dad’s baby too! And while at this time his participation is somewhat secondary to all that mama is doing, dads can play an integral role in the pregnancy and birth of the baby. And if this dad’s wife becomes a mama on bed rest, his participation is going to be integral to the success of this pregnancy.

So what are some of the important things that dads-to-be should know in order to help make a pregnancy, especially a high risk pregnancy involving bed rest, a success? Scott Schrier wrote an excellent post for dads which we featured previously on our blog. these are some of the thoughts I had:

1. Stay Calm. If you think you are freaked out at what is happening, mama-to-be is that and then some! While this baby may be everything that you both dreamed of, it is also ushering in a trip into the unknow and that is scary. It’s a fun and wild ride. If you can stay calm, you’ll both do just fine.

2. Be patient. You partner’s body is undergoing massive changes in a relatively short amount of time. At times this may be really uncomfortable-or at the very least, awkward. Try to be patient. Your partner’s body isn’t going to move as fast or as easily as it does when she’s not pregnant and every day will bring some sort of change-and perhaps some sort of limitation. Be patient-both of you!

3. Do what you can to help around the house. I know that this is a given, but it bears acknowlegement. Many men are so used to their partners doing most of the household duties that they are unaware of many of the things necessary just to keep life flowing smoothly. Do what you can to help out. Ask her what you can do and ask her, if she is able, to show you how to do it. It may not go so well the first time or two, but soon you’ll find yourself as fascile at things as she is and that is a huge help! (Especially if she doesn’t have to remind you or ask you to do things! Being proactive will go a really long way!

4. Get help if you can’t do it. This is soooo important for families on bed rest. I say families because when a mama goes on bed rest, everyone in her world is affected. Sometime a couple tries to go it on their own. This is no time for pride! Ask for help. Family, neighbors and friends are usually more than willing to help-if you just ask.

5. Don’t take things she says too personally. This goes back to #1 and #2. You partner may be really frustrated, scared and angry-especially if she is on bed rest. She likely has had friends who have cruised through their pregnancies, had glorious and transformational experiences (or so it seemed) and she may be feeling jipped, or like the complications she’s experiencing are all her fault, or simply sad. Unfortunately as the saying goes, ” We lash out at those closest to us!”  and you’re it! Try not to take what she says too personally. And when something does happen that is cutting, approach her at a more calm time and share with her how her comments hurt. Don’t keep it in, it will only fester and make things worse later on!!

Mamas, you can also do much to boost your hubby’s morale and to help him understand your feelings (and outbursts!). Bedrest is tough on all members of the family, but taking your frustrations out on one another won’t help. This is the time it band together! Working together will truly make your Bedrest a success!

Mamas, what has helped you help your partner with Bedrest? Share your tips and experience below In our comments section!

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