Parenting – How can I help my partner bond with my unborn baby?
If your partner hasn’t gotten used to the idea of being a dad, you can guide him and help create a bond with your unborn baby. Naturally women bond with their babies for 9 months before anyone else can, and some men can’t form that connection as they don’t experience the same bodily changes throughout the pregnancy as the mother does. The article takes a look at how you can follow a few easy steps to ensure your partner develops a bond with your unborn baby.
Introduce him to the little one
Seeing your baby on a scan can make it real and is an amazing experience that you’ll treasure forever. Ask your partner to accompany you the first scan to meet your child.
With modern technological advancement, you can both see a bit more of your baby before they’re born by using 4D scan technology. This is a scan done at about 26 weeks into the pregnancy and you might be able to see your little one kicking around and even sucking their thumb.
His voice can be music to the baby’s ears
At the 23 week mark your baby’s hearing will be developing and can pick up your heartbeat and sounds from the outside world. Both parents should spend time talking to their babies. This will mean by the time the baby is introduced into the world, he/she will recognise your voices.
Spend some time each day talking to your baby, telling him/her about the things you will do together, and how you are feeling that day. You may find that your baby responds to the sound of your voice, and begins kicking you as you talk.
Singing to your baby is also beneficial as this will have a positive effect of them getting used to the sound of his voice. Making a stronger bong with father and baby in the long-run.
Physical contact to strengthen the bond
Hang out every evening with your partner and observe your baby’s movements. For now, your baby’s only method of communication is kicking and nudging. Respond to this by having him place his hand on your belly and play with your baby by gently poking back when she nudges you. Encourage him to rub your belly in the area you feel movements and play a game of guessing if he’s touching the baby’s knee, head or foot.
Take him to class
Equip your partner with knowledge by attending every pre-natal class and doctor visit you can. Knowing what to expect will bring a range of positive possibilities and relieve new parent anxieties when the baby arrives. He doesn’t need to read every book, but showing up counts for a lot.
A study of pre-natal bonding techniques also showed decreased incidences of postnatal depression which, coupled by your partner’s knowledge, will help him understand his important role as the support structure for you and the newborn baby and later on in life.
Get the news from him
In today’s routine of gender reveal parties, you can take a step back and make it more intimate for you and your partner without all the glitz and glamour. Ask your doctor to reveal your baby’s gender to your partner first, then he can tell you. It will give him a thrilling sensation and responsibility of sharing the news with you
Source: Marie Stopes South Africa (Safe Abortion and Post Abortion Family Planning)
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