Hello again people of the internet, it’s Dan here, yes, the one with the beard. As all of you regular readers will know, Sarah and I have been expecting our daughter for the last few months and as the time draws near, Sarah asked me to share some of the things I’ve learned along the way, an opportunity I am grasping firmly if only to ensure the survival of some future fathers to be.
This whole experience has been enormous and there is no way I could manage to share everything with you so instead I will try to give you my top three lessons learnt as the husband of a pregnant wife.
- This is all your fault.
Take particular note of this. No matter how much planning and discussion has gone into this decision, when she’s in pain, uncomfortable and unable to sleep it’s all on you buddy. Her frustration could take many forms, from “accidentally” waking you up when she’s suffering from insomnia to frustration induced arguments that bounce so freely between different causes that the line separating logic from irrationality is not so much blurred as it is utterly annihilated.
Take the bad with the good though. You are a part of this. This child is going to be your child as much as it is hers. Really think about that and make an effort to be a part of the planning. Take ownership of some of the preparation, not only to lighten her load but for your own enjoyment. I speak from experience when I say that it is incredibly satisfying to sand, paint and otherwise prepare your baby’s nursery.
- Do ALL the things.
If your wife is anything like mine you will most certainly experience the following conversation:
Loving and concerned husband: Hey love, don’t you want me to help you with those [dishes/loads of washing/meal preparation]?
Kind and caring wife Shame don’t stress, I want to do this for us.
Less kind, somewhat frustrated wife: Ugh I’m feeling so sore now.
Husband sensing impending trouble: Are you sure I can’t just help you?
Annoyed and glaring wife: It’s too late now.
Husband resigned to his fate: I did offer to help.
[Death of husband follows]
Now, let’s recap. You may think that this husband’s fatal error was reminding his wife of his earlier offer of assistance. While this lapse in judgement (certainly fuelled by his need to defend his own honour, however misguided this may be) would absolutely be grounds for immediate death, in this instance, it is but consequence of a deeper error.
Guys, just do the chores before she can even get to them. Don’t get to the point where you even need to offer, if you notice something, just do it. Our wonderful, independent wives don’t like to start feeling as if they need help for every little thing. By helping her as much as possible without waiting for her to ask, you get to help her out without making her feel incapable. Death avoided.
- She is not a dangerous explosive device.
Okay so I’ve had my bit of fun with this article, but seriously guys, you don’t need to tiptoe around her, she’s not a landmine. She’s just your lovely wife trying her best to deal with all of the emotional and physical changes she’s going through without giving you too much of a hard time. Be there for her, talk to her, ask how she’s doing. Try to make her comfortable and remember that little gifts can go a long way, not out of fear of your own demise, but out of concern and appreciation.
Don’t treat her like glass. She’s a normal person and if you hug too tight she’ll tell you, same as always.
To wrap it up gents, just try to understand where she’s coming from and remember you can’t fix all her problems, as frustrating as that may be. Do what you can, roll with the punches and get excited about the new addition to your lives.