People often underestimate the role of the dad during pregnancy. At first glance, it might seem like the only role of the dad is to sit around and wait for the baby to come. But that's just not the case. There are plenty of things a dad can do to make things easier for the mom while she's going through this difficult time. On the same note, there are plenty of things a dad can do during pregnancy that can make things much harder.
Learning how to be a dad isn't easy. And this long and arduous process all begins when the mom becomes pregnant. Often, it's at this moment that a woman starts to understand what kind of a father her man will be. Some men show amazing qualities at this point, proving that they'll be a great dad. Others... not so much.
There are many things a man can do right during pregnancy, and there are also tons of things he can do wrong. This article will focus all the negative things a man can do that really make it that much harder for the mom to be. If any dads are reading this, make sure not to make these mistakes. Your wife or girlfriend will thank you for it.
20 They Don't Respond Well To News Of Pregnancy
A dad can actually make pregnancy very difficult almost immediately after it begins. Moms start to learn a lot about their men right after telling them that they're pregnant. How men react speaks volumes about how they feel about pregnancy.
Sure, there are tons of guys out there who are going to be supportive and positive about pregnancy news. But there are others who totally panic.
Some freeze up, some might even get angry. Negative reactions like these can make the pregnancy even harder for women. It just adds to the overall stress of the situation, and it makes the mom doubtful and uncertain.
19 Taking Phone Calls All The Time
This is actually pretty solid relationship advice, and it doesn't just apply when men are dealing with a pregnant woman. Get off the phone! When a woman is pregnant, she needs tons of attention. When the dad is on his phone all the time, it shows that he sees her as less important.
It's even worse when the mom is actually in hospital, going through labor. He might get bored from all the waiting, but that doesn't give him the right to hop on the phone. It makes the mom feel worthless, like she's all alone in her pregnancy struggle. No mom wants that.
18 Being Impatient
It's very easy for dads to get impatient during pregnancy. But to keep the mom happy, they must remain patient and considerate. To be fair, there's so much waiting with pregnancy. Guys are going to be waiting around at the hospital for long periods of time, and they might even get the urge to complain about how slow it's all moving.
There might also be plenty of false starts, when the woman feels like she's going into labor, but then realizes it's just cramps. She might be long overdue, and trying to induce pregnancy. Things like this can make a guy lose his patience. But they need to remember it's something that is out of the woman's control.
17 Falling Asleep In The Hospital
When moms go into labor, dads might have to spend hours at the hospital, and they might be trying to function on very little sleep. However, this still doesn't give them the excuse to fall asleep in the hospital. Dads who care will be doing everything they can to stay awake during this momentous occasion, whether that means drinking coffee or running laps around the hospital.
Pregnancy is so much harder when you're trying to do it alone. Women definitely benefit from having the support of their significant other while they're in the delivery room. A guy who falls asleep just can't be there. And that makes it so much harder for the mom.
16 Making Less Than Stellar Jokes
There's a reason why "dad jokes" are generally considered some of the most embarrassing attempts at comedy on the planet. But these jokes are definitely much less manageable when they're made at the expense of a pregnant mother. Women can be pretty emotionally fragile during pregnancy, and making bad jokes is definitely not a good idea for dads.
It's easy to make jokes when you're not the one in the delivery room, trying to do one of the hardest things a woman can do in her entire life. Making jokes doesn't help the mom in any way. Honestly, it just makes it worse.
15 Claiming To Be A Pregnancy Expert
Guys love to pretend to be experts, even when they clearly don't know a single thing about the subject. This definitely the case with pregnancy, and women can get seriously annoyed when a dad starts blabbering on about the various facts he thinks he knows.
Granted, some men actually do the research and become legitimate experts on the subject of pregnancy. Kudos to them. But when you don't actually know what you're talking about, it's probably best to keep your mouth shut. At this point, dads just get in the way, and they're making matter much more frustrating than they need to be.
14 Not Reading About Pregnancy
So how do men become experts on the subject of pregnancy? It's pretty simple, really... Read! That's right, pregnant women aren't the only ones who should be doing research on pregnancy. Dads who care also read up on the subject, and this makes it easier for them to help when the time comes.
Not doing enough research shows that dads can't really be bothered. Not only will they not know how to help in certain situations, but it also makes the mom way less confident about pregnancy. By reading along with her, dads can help the mom feel confident about pregnancy. Learning about a new subject is also a great bonding activity.
13 Not Going With Her To Doctor's Appointments
Dads really need to go with pregnant moms to their doctor's appointments. These are important chapters in each woman's pregnancy journey, and they can often be very stressful for the moms. We're never sure what kind of news we will receive. Having someone close by is definitely a huge help. Dads really need to support pregnant moms in these situations.
Some women are more freaked out by medical situations than others. Some women might be able to handle themselves pretty well. But for others, it can be incredibly stressful, and a source of stress. But hey, you might actually find out great news about your pregnancy during a doctor's appointment. Either way, the dad needs to be there to share the experience.
12 Not Knowing How To Handle The Delivery
We know, pregnancy isn't exactly PG-rated at the best of times. But even though it might get a little difficult for dads that are watching, they should definitely do their best not to get too grossed out. There's nothing worse than looking up at your man, only to see him with that look on his face.
It might be going completely normally, but his reaction could throw you off. Moms need a smiling, encouraging face. They need Dads to tell them everything is going fine, even if they might be trembling inside. When dads get too grossed out during the entire pregnancy process, it makes it much harder for the mom.
11 Taking Pictures At The Most Inopportune Moments
When it comes to snapping pictures, dads have to know when to put the camera down. There's a right time to take pictures, and there's a wrong time. Taking pictures at the worst moments can make the mom uncomfortable, self-conscious, and even angry. And rightly so! This isn't some form of entertainment. This isn't an art exhibit. It's a very real struggle.
If dads aren't sure, they should probably ask permission before taking a picture. And when the delivery is happening, most women don't want to be photographed. It just shows that dads are completely oblivious to the gravity of the situation.
10 Complaining Too Much
Some guys just complain a lot in relationships. It's just who they are. But when it comes to pregnancies, all guys should try to minimize whining and complaining. To be honest, dads have no right to complain during pregnancies. They're not the one going through all the discomfort, emotions, and stress. Guys who complain too much just make it way harder for the mom to get through this difficult time.
If there's any point in a woman's life when the focus should be on her, it's during pregnancy. Whining and complaining means that the dad is putting the focus on him instead of her. It makes the pregnancy all that much harder to deal with, because it's just another thing the mom has to worry about.
9 Watching TV In The Hospital
Yes, there are plenty of TVs in the hospital, and no, dads should not be watching them during any part of the woman's pregnancy. There are plenty of women out there who were upset when their men decided to catch up on sports highlights during her pregnancy. Granted, there's a lot of waiting during pregnancies. It might be tempting to turn on the TV to deal with the boredom.
But unless you have the clear permission of the mom, it's probably best to steer clear of the remote. Watching TV is like saying "I have better things to do than this." It's insulting to the mother, who is about to go through one of the most difficult experiences of her life.
8 Not Being There To Help During Morning Sickness
A lot of people underestimate just how difficult morning sickness can be. This can be a recurring thing during the entire length of the pregnancy. Even though it's not an issue to a woman's health, it can really grind her down after it continues for weeks on end. Dads must make every effort to help her during her onsets of morning sickness. It's not okay to just stay in bed while she runs to the bathroom.
Even though dads might not feel like they're "achieving anything," it really helps if they stand with the mom, holding her hair back and rubbing her back. This kind of emotional support does wonders, and it's something ever dad should strive towards.
7 Not Making Her Feel Beautiful During Pregnant
Some woman feel amazing during pregnancies. Others... not so much. Regardless of what's going on, dads must always try and remind moms that they look beautiful during pregnancies. Women can become self-conscious about their bodies during this time. It's up to dads to make moms feel confident about themselves, and teach them to love that belly.
This might not actually be so hard for dads to do. Most men actually find their pregnant wives and girlfriends really beautiful. But moms might not be so sure. They might need reminding, and it's always great if the dad takes it upon himself to do this.
6 Not Giving Up The Same Foods That She Has To Give Up
Pregnant women have to make tons of sacrifices. Sometimes, it might not even seem fair. Pregnant women have to change their activities, eat different food, and accept the fact that their life has changed forever. Dad, on the other hand, have no such obligations. They can keep eating their favorite food, drinking whatever they want, and doing everything they did previously.
But dads shouldn't do this. Instead, they should work with moms to make the same sacrifices she's making. The relationship should feel like a team. And it's so much easier for pregnant women to get through it all when there's someone else working alongside them.
5 Not Doing Chores Around The House
If there's ever a good reason to help out around the house with chores, it's when a man's wife or girlfriend gets pregnant. During this time, a woman might not be able to physically do certain chores. There might be times when a pregnant woman needs to rest and take it easy. A dad can't let the house get messy or fall into disarray. This is when he really needs to step up and contribute to the chores.
If he doesn't, a pregnant woman can quickly feel completely stressed out. This adds to her already growing list of worries, and it can be too much to bear in some situations. There might even be certain chores that a pregnant woman can't even safely do herself. A big example is cleaning the kitty litter tray. In short, a man who doesn't do the chores makes the pregnant woman's life much harder.
4 Not Helping Reduce Her Stress
This is a pretty general and broad point, but it's very important. A pregnant woman might be dealing with some pretty severe stress over the course of this difficult time. At certain moments, it can be debilitating. This is especially true with first time mothers, who might not be sure what to expect. Worrying and even depression is quite common among expectant mothers.
That's why every dad should do his best to help mom relax during this time. That might mean giving her a massage. That might mean helping her meditate and go through breathing exercises. It might simply mean letting her have some peace and quiet. Whatever the case, it's up to the dad to find out how to help.
3 Not Communicating Enough
Communication is key in all relationships, not just when the mom is pregnant. In fact, it might just be the most important thing when it comes to making things last. Pregnancies can truly test relationships, and that's why it's always important that the dad talks to his wife or girlfriend when she's going through all of this.
When a guy gets distant or silent, it can make the pregnant mother worry. She might be excited to talk about what she's going through, but unless the dad is willing to talk, she'll have to bottle it all up inside. And that's never good no matter how you slice it.
2 Not Taking Paternity Leave (Or At Least A Few Days Off Work)
While maternity leave is definitely very important during the whole process, people often forget about paternity leave. Both maternity and paternity leave aren't always possible. It's definitely a struggle to try and balance pregnancies and careers, and sometimes we just have to accept it as a tough fact of life.
However, if it's possible, men should at least make an attempt to get paternity leave. Spending time with the newborn and the new mom is a truly breathtaking bonding experience, and it's not something that men should just throw away. Even taking a few days off can really make a difference.
1 Not Thinking About Baby Names
Thinking about baby names is one of the most joyful things mom and dad can do together when planning for the baby. This is a really interesting experience, and it can last many months before both parties come to a decision. Men can often be pretty adamant about which names they like the most.
But the worst move on the part of a man is if he doesn't seem to care at all about the baby's name. It's an important part of the pregnancy experience, and if a man seems apathetic about the baby's name, it's kind of a bad move.