Five Fears First-Time Expectant Fathers Face
Becoming a father for the first time can certainly be a trying time. Aside from dealing with any issues associated with the mother, the new father must also try to embrace his new role as a caregiver to his very small bundle of life.
In fact, the entire process is fraught with fears for the new father. Here are five of the most notable ones:
- Income concerns – Transforming from having a DINK (dual income, no kids ) household to being the primary – or sole! – breadwinner can be somewhat scary for a new father. It also diminishes his options– and adds some stress – in terms of his work life as he must really ‘”toe the line” lest he risks losing his job. In short, a new dad will have to balance new bills with decreased income – a fairly stressful position to find oneself in.
- Medical problems – A newborn baby is essentially helpless. A new father must consider a whole host of possibilities about how it can be harmed – and then take measures to avoid them. For example, newborns are susceptible to a variety of relatively minor medical issues such as rashes, allergies, and fevers. In addition, there is the problem of SIDS (sudden infant death syndrome) – a major problem for a newborn while they are just lying in their crib!
- Emotional withdrawal – While the new father should already be ready for this task – as pregnant women are notoriously emotional – the addition of the new baby adds a new dimension to the family relationship. Many new dads do not immediately bond with the child and are far more concerned with the health and well-being of the mother. This fact may lead to anxiety and outright fear that they will never be able to do so.
- Relationship issues – Without a doubt, a newborn baby demands an incredible amount of attention from its mother. This reality may cause concern in a new father because his wife cannot pay as much attention to him as she did before. While the concern is legitimate, it is not particularly rational as the baby will need both parents to raise it. In other words, taking care of a new baby is a team effort and should be approached in that manner.
- Paternity questions – In this age of relatively “free love,’ some fathers may be concerned that the baby is not actually theirs. By and large, this is an unfounded fear but one that cannot be ignored. While the majority of fathers do not face this challenge a significant minority do – especially immediately after the birth as no one can really tell who the newborn looks like. In cases like this, patience really is a virtue.
For further information on how a newly minted father can properly prepare and care for the arrival of their first newborn child, please contact us at Your First Look Women’s Center. We can be found online at at YourFirstLook.org or reached directly at 567.455.1101.