safe motherhood


Your feelings

Now you know you're going to be a father, you may start thinking about your own childhood. Perhaps you had a brilliant dad who will be hard to live up to, or maybe you definitely don't want to be like the father you had.

You may be unsure about exactly what's expected of you. Once men had a clearly defined role as breadwinner, disciplinarian and reader of the newspaper. Now something more seems to be required, but what?

The following quotes show the feelings of three men at different stages of fatherhood.

Mark became a father while still at college. "To be honest, two years ago I hadn't seen my life going like this. Financially things were very hard when the baby was born and I missed my freedom. Because I have a family I'm going down a completely different path to my friends. But I am determined to be a good father to Jade and she brings me a lot of happiness. I want to make sure that I make her childhood fun like my parents did for me. It has made me focused on making a success of my working life to provide for her."

Daryl was in his mid-40s when his wife became pregnant after five years trying for a baby. "I've thought about being a parent a lot. My own father had an extremely poor and deprived childhood that scarred him deeply and it was inevitable that some of those scars were passed on to his children. As a father, I don't think I will be quite so strict and will be happy to show emotion. I am confident I will be able to give our baby a lot of love, but adolescence worries me. When our child reaches 15, I will be 60."

Nick admits to some ambivalence in the early stages of his Wife's pregnancy. "Even as my wife's body began to change, I veered between a sense of awe at what we'd done and outright sullenness for what it might mean to my life."

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