Advice for my best friend

Ashton - posted on 07/13/2009 ( 14 moms have responded )

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My best friend is a/b 4mo. pregnant and her husband seems to think that he doesn't need to take some time off after the baby's born and they come home from the hospital since "everyone's going to be there anyway." Any advice here?????

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Teresa - posted on 07/13/2009

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Ask him "Did everyone else help make this baby?" Really its a bonding time he should want to be there, for her and the baby.

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Jessica - posted on 09/16/2011

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I"m a pretty independant women but after our baby was born I really needed my husband around. Your emotions are all over the place. The night before he went back to work I was a nervous wreck and I cried for the first few mornings. I was so happy when he got home. I had may mother and sisters to help me but it wasn't the same. I think it's a good idea for him to be there.

Kimberly - posted on 07/14/2009

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My boy friend went back to work after our daughter and son were born but he at least needs a week or five days to help around the house with things while she is in recovery they are not going to be around all day and night I would think because after I had my kids I was so tired of people from the hospital I wanted no one at the house just peace and quiet

Sharon - posted on 07/14/2009

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I agree with nearly everyone else. The wife needs to state what she wants and assert it and in this economy he is lucky to have a job and maybe that is the real driving force.



He sounds insensitive or immature though. To state that he doesn't need to be at home because "everyone else will be there." is insensitive. His wife will just have gone through one of her biggest triumphs and they will be celebrating the miracle of a child. There will be bonding and learning and he really should be a part of it.



HOWEVER if because of job circumstances he can't then he shouldn't be penalized.

Jude - posted on 07/14/2009

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Our first pregnancy, my husband didn't take time off - because we were swamped by family, and his help would have been superfluous. It was better for him to get to work and make us some money, since that wouldn't have been paid time off. I didn't suffer in the least - the family took care of everything for me, even taking some of the night-time duties (Madi wouldn't sleep for more than 30 minutes at a time for the first couple weeks).

Our second time around, the family couldn't be there - they had already moved to Thailand (we were still in America then). Michael had a new job, one that would give him six weeks paid time off for a newborn. So, he took the time off.

Guess what? No bonding problems with either of them. They both love him lots and he loves them, too.

If the father can take the time off, if he needs to and/or can afford to - great! But the fact remains that most countries don't really encourage men to do this, America included. Probably, it would be unpaid vacation time, which a family with a newborn can't really afford to use - Michael used his "vacation" time to go to Madi's newborn check-ups. Quality time is more important than quantity time for bonding - the dad can bond just fine after work.

And I think it's unfair to jump to the conclusion that the guy is using this as some sort of excuse - he may have spent time really thinking about what was best for his family, and not just what he wished he could do. We don't really know enough about the situation to say one way or the other.

Melanie - posted on 07/14/2009

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Your friend is only 4 months, the pregnancy is still at that real but not real stage (especially for those not living it!). He may be feeling a little isolated at the moment - people (other women in particular) can flock around the pregnant women recounting their pregnancy stories etc. Making him feel a little unneeded/unwanted/uncomfortable



Maybe he feels a little overwhelmed by the idea of a newborn baby.



Like others have said maybe he feels he needs to work or will not be able to get the time off. This does not mean he is less caring, less able to bond with his baby. I knew a father who worked in an intensive job and would come home late he preferred the kids in bed by the time he got home so he could relax - however on the weekends he was an extremely attentive father who loved spending time with his kids.



Your friend and her husband have to workout what works for them. If she wants him at home then she needs to talk to him about it.

Michelle - posted on 07/14/2009

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That's a personal choice that the couple has to make. My hubby took a week off, I was in the hospital from Monday to Thursday, but he was back to work the following week. We couldn't afford it and I didn't mind being home by myself with our little one. He help a lot when he was home and let me catch some ZZZ's while he looked after her.

Jeanne - posted on 07/14/2009

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That is up to the parents to discuss between them....I know I appreciated having my hubby in the hospital when I was there for the three days and once he brought me home he left to go to work (my mother was there to help) and I was fine with it. I think it depends on what everyone is comfortable with. I think it is important for dad to bond wih the baby but maybe he is just feeling slightly overwhelmed with the whole idea at the moment and he may change his mind as the due date gets nearer.

Paige - posted on 07/14/2009

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It would be great if he could stay home, but in this economy he is lucky to have a job and he probably needs to stay in good with his work. A couple days off after being home from the hospital would be great but unfortunately there are a million people out there with out jobs who are probably just as qualified as him to do his job that dont need anytime off. I'd rather be safe than sorry. My husband was always really great, he would get up and change diapers in the middle of the night and take our daughter into the living room really early so i could get in some extra sleep before he went to work. He also did alot on the weekends. Maybe this is what they should work out instead of him staying home for awhile after the baby is born. It's just as helpful. Especially since there will probably be other family and friends to help her during the day.

Ashton - posted on 07/14/2009

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Personally I think he should at least be there to help out both with house work, cooking meals, and at least changing diapers....she's going to be sore when she comes home from the hospital and is going to need help. At least for a few days he doesn't have to take off a huge amount of time.

Cathralynn - posted on 07/14/2009

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I'd say yes its important for the dad to be there cause its an important bonding time for both of the parents. Of course the mom needs to take any help she needs or wants and you can't force the dad to be there, but my husband and I actually didn't want many visitors and would try and keep it short so we could get back to just OUR baby time in the beginning. I was trying to breastfeed (didn't work) but both my husband and I spent hours with my daughter doing skin on skin contact so she could bond with us both. I have a very involved husband and I know this is not always the case.



Ideas: Maybe the dad doesn't know he can get paternity leave from his work or family leave from the state? Also if the dad is involved even tho working there is alot of bonding to be done in the evenings or night if the dad HAS to work but makes an effort. Also dads change after the birth of the baby. My husband was not so ready for kids but agreed cause it was important to me and I was 30. After our daughter he says he would do it again and never regrets her. Its not real until the baby is there for men.

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A lot of times when men learn that they are about to have a baby they suddenly get this thought that they need to start earning tons more money because they are supposed to be the providers. Maybe he's just thinking that he needs to keep making money.

I think that your friend really needs to talk to her husband and ask him why he doesn't want to be home with them. And also tell him how she feels about it and the reasons that she feels that way. If that's still his decision after their talk then so be it but at least they will both have a better understanding of the other person.

Anna - posted on 07/13/2009

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I've definitely known couples where only 1 parent did most of the early childcare. Unfortunately, most of them ended up doing most of the childcare FOREVER. This is such a critical time for both parents (if the child's lucky enough to have 2 around) to bond with the baby - there are things that happen with hormones, scents and senses during that time that can't be recreated.



Babies seem boring to many men, because they don't do much except eat, cry and sleep. And, if you're breastfeeding, the man often feels even more useless and/or helpless, because the baby almost always needs YOU. Somehow, they have to understand that changing a diaper, rocking a baby to sleep or just holding him/her while you take a shower - are CRITICAL things to do for a new family. It's just not the same if "everyone" else is there, and I think, also unfortunately, that your girlfriend will have a very hard time not resenting the crap out of her absent husband later.

Christine - posted on 07/13/2009

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well i guess it is up to that person.. i did not mind if my husband was not there all the time, i guess maybe he needs to hear it from his wife that she really need him, men are babies like that..lol

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