Written by Editorial Team
It’s not only the mum, but also the dad-to-be who eagerly waits to feel the tiny feet, satin skin, and cooing of the baby. Husbands can help in labor. Women are supported by their kin’s and partners during pregnancy dealing with untimely food cravings, relieving nausea, and putting up with their mood swings.
The journey doesn’t end here, the day when the fruit of labor will be delivered still looms. You must have watched husbands filming and encouraging their wives to “push” the baby out. Does this makes you wonder whether your husband would do the same during the D Day, and you welcome this thought or otherwise?
In This Article
Preparing yourself for childbirth and helping your partner through it is not as difficult as most dads-to-be think. You can take childbirth classes held in hospitals for to-be-parents, and a little online research would go a long way. Here are some quick cheat sheet points for to-be-dads:
You might have seen your partner groaning in pain and thinking ‘This is it’ but actually the pains ease after a few minutes. These are Braxton hicks contractions and stop after some time. Apart from sharp, painful contractions, you should look for the following signs-
After you have concluded that your partner is in labor, you can start to time the contractions using a timer in seconds. Regular contractions lasting for at least 30 seconds are an indication that early labor has begun. Sometimes, you may need to get to the hospital earlier, so keep your partner’s doctor informed about the same
The movies and soaps that show women going into labor this second and the baby coming out the next second could set wrong expectations – so it would be wise not to rely on them. Labor is called labor for a reason, and it does not happen that fast. Though not easy, stay away from the clock and support your partner
Labor essentially has three stages, the first stage comprising of the early phase, the active phase, and the transition phase. The second stage of labor involves pushing and birthing, and this can last from minutes to hours. The delivery of the placenta forms the third and final stage of labor. Gaining some insight into them will ensure you are prepared for each stage of labor and can help your partner through.
Every woman’s dream is to have her husband involved in the process that is going to change their life forever. Make sure you know what is there in the hospital bag, and carry your essentials. If your wife has a birth plan prepared, make sure you hand it over to the doctor. Drive safe and slow and ensure that you know the way to the hospital. Carry important contacts at all times on your phone. Be there for her, for the new baby, and support and comfort her.
After spending months together, crying and laughing, fighting and arguing – at a certain point wives look up to their husband for support. The times have changed and now you can see husbands trotting along their wifey’s to pregnancy yoga or Pilates classes. Truth is, as a husband, you can now further extend your help in labor too. Read below on how you can do this:
Take measures to educate yourself about childbirth and labor pain. The best is to join childbirth classes with your wife. They will tell you numerous techniques to ease labor pain. Knowing about the procedure before sometimes relieves anxiety!
Your wife could be screaming and hurling things at anyone in so much pain. You need to arrange things keeping your wife in mind. If something annoys your wife such as the perfume of a nurse or the bed inclination, work out ways to sort that out. She is sensitive and in much, much pain!
There is nothing more irritating and nerving than repeating yourself at the top of your voice during such a painful condition. You should discuss with your wife what she likes and dislikes, what she wants and the like. If something occurs that your wife doesn’t like, be firm and do not let it happen. This is often the case with pain medications, wherein some ladies do not prefer to be given painkillers.
Give her sips of water every now or then, preferably after each contraction. You don’t need to ask just hold it near her lips. Hydration will make things easier by giving energy.
You need to distract your wife’s mind from labor pain to something else. Try to engage her in conversations, perhaps about something she adores, maybe the new baby clothes. Turn on her favorite music, TV program, or whatever that can help her concentrate elsewhere.
Labor can continue for hours before the perfect time for delivery. So take care of your diet, feed yourself well, and remain energetic. This is because you never know what may be expected of you. It may include a shoulder or feet massage, a demand for favorite food or candy or a hot cuppa! Be prepared and don’t let your spirits falter.
The childbirth classes will teach both of you some techniques to calm down in the event of pain. You need to initiate the activity with your laboring wife. It may be as simple as coaching, deep breathing, self-talk or singing a lullaby!
You cannot make the situation more uncomfortable for your wife by letting her wait in the labor room at the hospital, home is way too better. This readiness is determined by the time between uterine contractions. If the time between contractions is less than 5 minutes and last for 30 seconds or more for about an hour, then most obstetricians consider this the right moment to dash to the hospital. Do wear a watch with seconds hand to keep notes.
Women are used to seeing blood down there, thanks to their monthly visitors, but some men may not be able to digest this. Also finding themselves in a helpless solution, they might give in to the situation. This is not going to help your partner who needs your support. You will be educated on how and what happens during labor and delivery so focus on that and remain firm
You definitely do not want to upset your wife more by asking her to wait whilst you rummage through your cabinet to pack your stuff for the hospital stay. The idea is, once she is ready, you really need to get moving. Be more responsible, keep fuel filled in the car, and some snacks and drinks ready since the time required for delivery is unpredictable.
Be around, let her hold your hand, let her squeeze it as much as she wants, listen to her, and do what she says. It’s your presence that matters her the most. Some ladies just want their partner to be around when this life-changing event happens. So extend your love and support her through this difficult phase.
And All the best!
With a rich experience in pregnancy and parenting, our team of experts create insightful, well-curated, and easy-to-read content for our to-be-parents and parents at all stages of parenting.Read more.
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