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Featured Article

Title
How can a father bond with baby before pregnancy?
 
Author
Hogan Hilling
 
It is important to first understand that bonding is a process. It is not just something that happens. You are building a relationship and bonding will take time. Remember that your wife had a nine month head start and a physiological advantage - she carried the baby. Which made it more natural for her to bond with the baby. Here are some suggestions on how you can bond with your baby:
 
1. Give your wife permission to wake you up in the middle of the night to help with the feeding of the baby. Although you can't breastfeed there are other ways you can help in the process. You can bring the baby to mom. Rock the baby to sleep after the feeding. This is a great time to spend with the baby because there are no distractions in the still of the night. It is just you and the baby.
 
2. Talk about your baby at work. This is important for two main reasons. One of which will be noted in tip #3. It tells your employer and coworkers how important family is to you and what a Proud Dad you are. Place a picture of the baby at your desk and show it to everyone.
 
3. Attend doctor's appointments with your baby. Just you and the baby - without mom. This is where your relationship with your employer comes in. You need to let your employer know how important it is for you to do this and that taking time to attend a doctor's appointment will not affect you performance at work. Also, let your wife know that you'd like to have this time alone with the baby. Note: A mom may not recognize or be aware of how much time she spends with the baby. And how little time and opportunities a dad has to be with the baby. Assure her that it is okay to relinquish the baby in your care and that you can be trusted.
 
4. Each second, minute you spend with the baby will help strengthen your bond with the baby. Even the simple tasks of caring for the baby like changing diapers, bathing, feeding, walking the baby in the stroller, and singing to the baby will enhance your relationship with the baby.
 
5. This may all sound simplistic. And it is. However, how to bond and spend time with the baby is not the real issue. Its about making the time. And remember that a dad's time alone with the baby also provides an opportunity for the baby to bond with his/her dad.
 
How can a father stay connected with his wife during pregnancy (birth classes, belly masking, etc.)?
 
1. Call your wife from work occasionally. Offer her words of comfort or just have a conversation with her. Remind her how excited you feel for her and you in becoming parents.
 
2. Give her permission to call you at work. She may not call you but the fact that she knows she has your permission will give her great comfort in knowing that you still love her and think about her.
 
3. Send your wife a "Love You" or "Mother's Day" card in the mail. Either to your house or her place of work. You could also ask relatives and friends to send your wife a "Mother's Day" card.
 
4. Take your wife out for a lunch date.
 
5. Show up to her place of work with a bouquet of flowers.
6. Attend the prenatal appointments with her. Arrange this ahead of time with your employer.
7. Give her massages.
8. Say the words "I Love You."
OK
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