In this article, we will cover things a dad should know about pregnancy and how they can prepare to better help out.
As we all know, pregnancy and giving birth to children is a mother’s job. However, there are several ways that you, as a partner in the relationship can help her. And because it took two of you to start this pregnancy journey, then the road ahead will be more fun together.
According to multiple research sources, first time moms have a better overall experience when their partners are actively involved in the entire pregnancy journey. Being there for your partner during the entire pregnancy proves that you are a reliable partner.
With that in mind, let’s look at some of the things a dad should know about pregnancy.
Table of Contents
Pregnancy for Dads Week by Week
While the experience might not be entirely the same for both partners, this doesn’t mean that it can’t be a joint venture for the expecting spouse. For the dads, you may not be experiencing morning, noon, and even night sickness.
But this doesn’t mean you leave your partner to struggle with her issues the entire time. You should at least step in and see how you can ease whatever she’s going through. Try bringing her a smoothie or visit a professional together to learn the best way to cope through this.
Additionally, your expectant partner might also be subjected to an aching back and feet. In this case, you should try to rub the aching areas to at least ease your partner’s pain. That’s not all because these days you can even accompany your partner inside the maternity.
But this will depend if it’s a normal delivery or if there will be a need for your partner to visit the theatre. If it’s the latter, then you can stand by your partner’s side and cheer her on while she delivers your bundle of joy.
With that in mind, the following is how pregnancy for dads can look like week by week.
Weeks 1 and 2
Usually, nothing much happens externally but a lot will be going on inside. This is the period your partner experiences ovulation where the sperm waits eagerly to fertilize the egg.
At this point, the sperm will have met the egg and fertilized it for the pregnancy journey to begin. However, neither of you might be aware of what is going on at the moment. Therefore, you should stick to your daily routine and continue enjoying time together.
At week 4, your partner should now be ready to test for pregnancy to ascertain where she stands. During this time, you should avoid or prevent anything hazardous to the pregnancy.
Additionally, both of you should now focus on shifting to better habits for the benefit of the pregnancy.
When it hits week 5, you should be by your partner’s side as she now takes the pregnancy test. For most women, early pregnancy signs usually start to show around 5 weeks into conception.
This is where your partner may start experiencing tender and achy breasts, fatigue, and morning sickness as well. You should now be available to assist her through this process in whichever way possible.
Nausea is pretty popular for most 6 week pregnancies and people usually confuse this for morning sickness. Nausea can kick in and last for the whole day and this is where you need to find suitable meals during this process.
After nausea now comes your partner’s sensitive sense of smell, which can send her to the bathroom in seconds. At week 7, your partner’s sense of smell will be highly sensitive and might trigger several negative reactions.
Therefore, you should start quitting things like perfume, cologne, or an air freshener that doesn’t agree with her sense of smell.
At week 8, your pregnant partner might be having some food aversions. During this time, you should switch to her preferences while ensuring she still eats healthy. If it’s too overwhelming to comprehend, then you can seek a professional’s advice.
Ease up on her breasts when making love because they are both growing and highly tender or even painful.
This is when regular prenatal check-ups start to happen up until labour. If you can, it would be best to accompany your partner to these appointments. This will help you understand better ways to handle the pregnancy while learning more about your role.
Most pregnant women start going to the toilet frequently when they are 11 weeks pregnant. That’s because the uterus is expanding and it’s now pressing on the bladder. At this stage, clear all the barriers that might be limiting your partner from getting to the toilet quicker.
Wee 12 is when you mostly need to ease up making love to your pregnant partner. That’s because the fatigue, bloat up, and nausea usually turns her off. So, you should find other ways to connect with her.
At the end of the first trimester, you need to engage more about pregnancy with your partner. Even if she’s leaving you out of most things, don’t be shy to bring up the topic.
Couvade syndrome, also known as sympathetic pregnancy may start kicking in at week 14 for dads. It’s okay if it happens or not.
Most expecting spouses usually go through baby name options at week 15 because they’ve now settled into pregnancy.
You might start experiencing similar mood swings too, and you should connect with people in a similar scenario or programs to help you cope.
Hormones usually creep up and stuff your partner’s nostrils while sleeping. If she experiences snoring, you can purchase a humidifier and use it during bedtime.
Employ a better, healthy and suitable diet to your partner. And if you’ve been doing it for the most time then kudos to you.
The dads usually get emotional when they see an infant or onesies. It’s a sign that you are ready for fatherhood by instincts.
This is usually the level 2 ultrasound, which shows you and your partner how the baby is developing inside.
Your pregnant partner may start experiencing slight kicks from inside, which clarifies that there is a little joyous being insider her.
Remember you eased up on sex some few weeks ago, well it wouldn’t be a bad idea to reconsider it now. However, you first have to ensure her practitioner has given her a green light before you find better positions for the sake of her belly.
Pay attention to her needs, including comfort, pleasure, and any other thing that she might need to feel comfortable and well taken care of.
The little bundle of joy inside is probably the size of a grapefruit at week 24. You can bond with your baby by playing a song or just communicating with them.
At week 25, you can now feel your baby’s movement quite often by placing your hand on your partner’s belly.
By the end of the second trimester you can start learning about the whole labour and delivery process just to know what to expect.
Your partner’s bump is getting bigger, while the skin becomes dry and itchy due to stretching. You should rub coconut oil or any other preferable oil to ease that irritation.
In week 28, you can help your partner decide whether it will be breast or bottle. It’s the start of the final trimester and most things need clarification now.
Week 29 usually finds most expecting spouses talking about the dos and don’ts that will come with the new baby.
With a few more weeks to go, this is a favourable time to start discussing the birth plan ahead.
The baby is growing and adding more weight to your partner. You now need to create an enabling environment for her to cope appropriately.
At week 32, you need to check up with your primary practitioner to ascertain whether the immunization process is up to date.
It’s important to find your baby’s doctor now when you can still do it together at the moment.
You can now help your partner pack her and the baby’s necessities in a bag for the overnight stay at your hospital of choice.
When heading over to the hospital, be ready for anything because there may be a possibility of delivery along the way.
During this week and going forward, you need to be close to your partner till your bundle of joy arrives. Ensure that you ask for permission from your work or if you own a business leave someone in charge for you.
By week 37, you can go back and check on the house. Clean it up and organize anything that might be out of check before welcoming your baby.
Get back and spend more time with your partner, enjoy her company and assure her that you are together in this.
You only have another week before receiving your new baby on the due date. Enjoy this baby-less time together while you wait to add another member to your family.
It’s finally time, and your partner might be expecting the baby this week. However, it can still go beyond but not more than two weeks. If your baby does arrive within this week, then you have successfully won the race together and congratulations to you both.
If not, keep waiting because he/she will be coming sooner.
What Men Need to Understand About Pregnancy
First, you need to understand that your partner is now eating for two. So, you need to feed her constantly. Another thing, you have to check the appropriate diet for her condition and avoid causing her any additional stress.
If you are both first time parents, then it would be best to seek advice on how to stay healthy during this whole pregnancy journey.
You’ll now need to watch your sense of humour, pay more attention to her feelings, ease up on sex and be with her through the positives and the negatives.
How to Make a Man Understand Pregnancy?
This guide practically explains everything in detail that men need to know about pregnancy. As a dad, whether for the first time or not, you need to be there for your partner during such a sensitive process.
And understanding what goes down during this entire time is the best way to get involved. That’s because you’ll know how to respond to every situation that you and your partner fall into together.
Therefore, ensure that you are all in with your partner to fully cater to her and the baby’s needs as well.
First Trimester Explained for Dads
During the first trimester, the fertilised egg will burrow in your partner’s uterus lining. In the next five weeks, the egg cell then forms into three layers, which are:
- Breathing and digestive system
- Heart and blood vessels
- Brain and the nervous systems
Your baby will continue growing as time passes by but your partner will be feeling the real effects. This is the point she gets tired a lot, choosy, moody, and sometimes just lazy. You need to understand that it’s not easy for her especially if she’s new to this.
Therefore, you need to be there for her and help her in any way during this first trimester of the pregnancy.
How to Explain Pregnancy Hormones to a Man?
During pregnancy, you need to understand that your partner will change in shape, and how she acts around other people, including you. So, it’s no longer your normal day routine with her now and you need to be more keen of her.
Like explained in the sections above, there is nothing more important now than to understand what to expect from your partner during pregnancy. Once you are aware of the events ahead, then dealing with them accordingly won’t be as difficult as when you have no clue.
So, you need to dedicate time to learn about the process from the internet or check with a professional, whichever suits you best. This way, your partner won’t be alone in this.
Father Involvement in Pregnancy
According to studies, negative outcomes both during and after pregnancy diminish where the fathers have been more involved in the process. Therefore, paternal involvement is an essential activity for every dad that’s privileged to be there.
Taking care of your partner during the entire pregnancy ensures that both her and the baby get what they need to cope while healthy. So, push up your sleeve and be ready to get involved because all of you will win at the end of this pregnancy journey.