safe motherhood


So, you've survived the birth, but what next? If you have never been a parent before it will be impossible to imagine the enormous changes your life will go through once you have a baby to care for.

The following father obviously felt he knew what was he in for!

"Before Dominic was born, Helen had planned to stay a couple of nights in hospital after the birth, but after the first night she told me she was determined to come home that day. Rather than thinking purely in terms of her needs, I was horrified to realise that my first thoughts were to do with the infringement on my time and space - as if inside I had planned one last free night before the 'battle' began."

Another honest comment from one father was: "I don't think a man's preparation for the fatherhood role during the nine months of pregnancy is as clearly focused as the mother's. This may be another way of saying the man's role is a bit detached compared with the mother's deeply involved one. What it means in practice is that you're more inclined to want to 'escape' at times from the responsibility of it all and, once the baby is born, from the sheer hard work."

Practical concerns will probably be at the forefront of your mind, for example, how do you keep the household running, go to work, get in enough supplies for mother and baby and cope on half your normal amount of sleep? In the days immediately after the birth you may feel that your life is in chaos. Babies aren't aware of night and day and you will have to adapt to their worldview rather than the other way round.

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