When we began to spread the word that we were expecting, my husband received the obligatory “Daddy Books” the likes of which are half read and gathering dust.  Much like Katherine Heigl’s character in Knocked Up, I had a mini melt down (or 2) when I felt like D was not being fully invested and reading those damn books.  I really wanted him to read those books because I was avidly reading about baby products, what to to expect during pregnancy, and what to do when you bring home baby.  I felt like the pressure was on for me to know EVERYTHING, and wanted him to share the burden.  When I asked D why he didn’t seem to like the books they were deemed uninformative and slightly lame.  I was really looking for some resource to better instruct hubby on what to do and how to handle me!

I found some sage advice for D in a very unlikely place.  Once pharmaceutical companies add your name to the soon to be parent marketing list,  you begin to receive all kinds of things in the mail.  Diaper samples, coupons etc.  A few weeks ago I received some formula samples in the mail from Similac (Abbott Labs).  Inside the box on a small fold out piece of paper I found the best advice for Dads to live by during delivery!

Here is what it said:

How To Be a Hero During Delivery*:  Having a baby is a memory you’ll both share for the rest of your lives.  Here’s how to make sure she doesn’t remember it for the wrong reasons.

  • No wincing.  She feels vulnerable enough during delivery and doesn’t need you reacting like you’re watching a horror movie.  Remember, it’s a beautiful miracle.
  • It’s not a roast. If she’s feeling awkward, she might poke fun at herself.  Don’t take this as an opportunity to craft your own zingers.  Tell her she looks beautiful and stick to it.
  • Never say, “It’s not that bad”. Some “clever” dads think that understating her discomfort will lessen the pain of delivery.  Ditch the Psych 101 tactics.  She needs empathy, not therapy.
  • Swallow your pride. She might yell at you. She might insult you.  Hey, she’s scared. She’s in pain. And she trusts you enough to vent.  So take it like a man, big guy.
  • Careful with the camera. If she wants you to document the delivery, great.  But leave the commentary and creative camera angles to Spielberg.  You’re making a baby movie, not an action movie.

I think I may plasticize this little card and tuck it into my hospital bag!

(*taken from Similac “The StrongDads Hospital Checklist”)
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