So you’re a brand-new dad or you’re about to become one, huh? There are a lot of men out there that think that the mamas should handle the bulk of the job, but the truth is that the best dads understand that the more involved they are, the better off the kid is going to be in the long run.
Since of course that’s the kind of dad you want to be (otherwise you probably wouldn’t be reading this), here are some handy dandy tips that can help you start getting your feet wet. Don’t think of this as doing something for your kid – you’re doing this for yourself too.
Helpful Hints for Brand-New Dads
Keep Baby Close to You
There’s just something about skin to skin contact that is really good for babies. Sit back on that couch, let your chest out and let baby fall asleep hearing his papa’s heartbeat. This will help you start to develop a close bond from the very start.
Another option is to try a baby wrap. It isn’t nearly as bad as it sounds and the best part is that it helps you keep your hands free for other activities.
It is very important for fathers to spend a little alone time with their children. Even just 20-30 minutes at a time where it is just you and the baby is good when they’re so brand spankin’ new, but as they get older continue this trend and stretch the time out further and further.
This will help you get to know your little spud, and it’ll help them get to know and trust you also. Win win.
Don’t Take it Personally
Your baby’s mama is going to be especially protective of the new bean in your lives, so try not to get offended if she tells you that you’re doing something wrong. It kind of comes with the territory. Just go with the flow and realize this is normal.
Once she becomes more confident that you’re being safe and following directions with the baby, she’ll ease up in no time.
The thing kids love most about dads (besides the entire being there for them) is how fun they can be! Get a head start when they’re still very wee by singing songs and being silly and sweet with them in general.
They really soak in this kind of attention, and seeing the way your child starts to grow and react to that attention is unlike anything else.
Learn the Ropes
Unfortunately it can’t be all fun and games. Make sure you’re helping out with the basic parenting too. That means changing diapers (yes, really) and helping to feed your child. Even better, clean up after your child. Don’t be the dad that steps back and expects the mom to handle everything. This can only lead to bigger problems later on.
Most importantly, just be there. Be involved and do your part to help the new addition to your family grow up full of confidence. Let them know that they are well-loved, and teach them how to respect others. You know, all of the good qualities that any papa worth his salt should instill in his children.
It might seem really hard at first, but you’ve got this. It’s amazing how quickly this entire being a dad thing becomes second nature.