|I am finding that being the partner of a pregnant woman is
very scary – I seem to be able to think of nothing else
than what could go wrong both for the baby and for my wife.
Is this unusual?
Pregnancy and birth are fearful times for everyone involved,
so your feelings are completely normal. Sometimes being
the spectator, as you are in this situation, is more difficult
than experiencing the situation and dealing with it moment
by moment. The first thing to do is to constantly remind
yourself that the vast majority of women and their babies
make it through the whole pregnancy and birth in perfect
health. Modern medicine has provided us with solutions to
situations that were formerly life threatening, and also
provides with the chance for early intervention in the case
of many problems.
So perhaps you should start with the health care that your
wife is receiving. Perhaps if you participate in the routine
appointments and see the level of care that she receives
from her health care worker, it may provide you with some
level of reassurance. If you are unable to accompany her
to these visits, ask your wife to discuss the care she is
receiving and ensure that you are part of the team that
makes the decisions in a participatory manner during this
pregnancy. Read up so that you understand the various situations
clearly. For many men, knowing that their wives health is
in good hands is a way to lessen their fears.
Try to help your wife in practical ways, such as shopping
and chores. If she is under less stress, she may be able
to manage her own emotions and fears a little better. Since
it is possible that she is transmitting some of her fears
and uncertainty to you, it may make a difference to both
of you if she is more rested. Some gentle exercise together
is also a great stress reliever. Taking an easy stroll together
can be surprisingly helpful.
By improving the nutrition of both of you, you can reassure
yourself that the baby is growing as well as it can, and
that your wife’s body is being supported. It means
that if you are making healthy choices when shopping, and
then eating more sensibly yourself, it makes it easier for
your partner to do the same. The same applies to alcohol,
cigarettes and drugs. It is vital that pregnant women abstain
from these things, and her life will be so much easier if
you do the same. Knowing that she is making these healthier
choices could help alleviate some of your fears.
Communication during this time is vital. The changes are
just beginning, and once the baby is born there will be
even more changes. To function as a team you have to understand
the thoughts and fears that you each harbor. Ask her about
her fears, and discuss yours with her, and you may find
that having them out in the open is also very helpful.
When all is said and done, this is a time when fears are
normal. The nine months will have passed before you know
it, and when you hold that tiny baby, complete with all
ten fingers and toes, your fears will pass. Until then all
you can do is make sure that you are participating fully
in this wondrous event!
Father - Father
Father - Father’s
fear of delivery
Father - Father's