We can all agree that a good relationship should be based on mutual love, trust, and support. However, no matter how supportive you are of each other on a regular basis, there are certain times when you have to provide your partner with extra support.
For example, pregnancy is a period when you should really step up and show your support as your partner is surely under a lot of pressure. Here are some ways how you can support your birthing partner before, during, and after labor.
Don’t Wait for Them to Ask for Help
Once you find out that you are expecting an addition to your family, you will probably start treating your partner with kid gloves.
Keep in mind that they will probably hate this in the beginning. You should let them do what they want unless their doctor prescribes some form of bed rest.
However, as the due date gets closer, you want to start doing things around the house without your partner asking you for help.
Make it a habit to make meals, clean up, and deal with various chores and responsibilities that your partner would usually handle. While they might not ask for help, they will certainly appreciate it.
Go to Childbirth Classes Together to Support Your Partner
Your partner should not be the only one that is preparing for the delivery. You should also be playing an active role.
So, go to childbirth classes together to learn more about what you can expect.
Experts will teach you about what happens to the body during pregnancy, the phases of labor, and common reasons for a C-section.
Familiarizing yourself with the process of labor can make the whole experience a bit easier for you both.
Understand Mental Health During Pregnancy
While learning about the delivery process and everything it entails is vital for properly supporting your partner, you should also make an effort to better understand your partner’s mental health. You’ve surely heard about postnatal depression but it’s important that you are aware of the fact that mental health can also be affected during pregnancy.
For instance, preexisting mental health conditions like anxiety disorders or PTSD can be exacerbated during pregnancy. If your partner is stressing about how the pregnancy will go, whether everything will go smoothly during delivery, and how you will be able to afford everything that the baby might need, it’s essential that you are there to listen and offer helpful advice that can make them feel better.
In case you are struggling yourself or are not sure how you can help your partner, you can also look for professional help and consult a therapist.
Discuss the Birth Plan in Advance
Whether you are planning on giving birth at home or going to a hospital, you need a plan.
Have everything you might need at home and find a reliable doula if you’re considering a home birth. On the other hand, for a hospital birth, pack a bag and find the best route.
Moreover, keep in mind that some things might not go according to plan, regardless of how much you prepare. In that case, you also need a backup plan.
Make sure you are aware of all possibilities and how your partner would proceed. While they’re in labor, you will have to be their voice and make some decisions on their behalf.
Monitor the Contractions
If you took a birthing class, you probably learned about contractions. That means that you will know how to tell false contractions from real ones.
Moreover, you surely know about the importance of timing them so that you can get to the hospital on time or contact your midwife. You can also show your support for your partner by talking them through the contractions.
Support Your Partner, Think of Distractions
Childbirth classes should also teach you that labor can take a while. To make the wait easier for your partner as well as yourself, you should think of some distractions.
For example, walk the hospital halls together, bring a laptop and watch a TV show, or play some card games. Remind your partner to stay hydrated and offer to rub their back. Put on relaxing music and always be there.
Be Present During Delivery Supporting Your Partner
When active labor starts, let your partner hold your hand as tightly as they can and don’t complain.
Breathe together, try to soothe them, and keep them going.
Moreover, you should know that birth can be messy but no matter what you see or hear.
To support birthing partner, you should keep calm and collected and get your partner through it.
Take the Hands-On Approach With the Baby
From cutting the cord in the delivery room to getting up in the middle of the night to feed the little one, you need to support your partner even after labor.
Playing an active role and allowing your partner to get some rest will not only help them. Moreover, help you bond with your little bundle of joy much quicker.
To Sum Up
The key to a successful relationship is supporting one another through everything that life sends your way. There is no better way to strengthen your relationship than by constantly showing how you support birthing partner.
For more helpful parenting tips, follow the links below.
Manuel is our resident proud stay at home Dad of 2 young children – 3yo and 16 months! Manuel used to be a journalist for his local newspaper but with his wife climbing the corporate ladder they decided that Manuel would quit his job and stay home with the kids – which he describes as “the best thing that has ever happened to me!”. Manuel loves being the stay at home parent and navigating the world of stay at home Dads and the stereotypes that come with that.