If you are living in a nuclear family, it is the dad’s responsibility to ensure the mom is well-fed to help feed the baby in turn
The theme for this year’s World Breastfeeding Week Is Step Up for Breastfeeding: Educate and Support. Over the years, thankfully the awareness towards supporting breastfeeding moms and educating those about the importance has gained ground. And if we need for this to be amplified further, to help out more new moms in this pursuit of their journey, the dads have a crucial role to play.
Thankfully over the last decade, fathers have gotten a lot more hands-on in their parenting role, and dads spending time with their children is not seen as “baby-sitting” anymore! This paradigm shift in thinking has come after years of moms sweating it out as the primary caregiver, especially in our country. That role is here to stay, but how can we make it a more seamless and less stressful one for the moms?
Here we share some tips on how fathers can lend their support to new moms to help them in their breastfeeding journey. They are simple and doable so do share them with a new parent so they find them useful!
- Get Your Facts Right!
As much as we gloat and say that things have changed over the years with dads becoming more involved in parenting, often the detailing that comes with each step, like understanding the hunger cues of your baby, their sleep pattern, etc, dads must be fully aware of them too. It could be accessing parenting websites that are stocked with info, or Google or even parenting books that break it down month-wise- get your hands on the details so you are not caught off-guard or unprepared. We have a expert course on Kidsstoppress for new parents, to help them out with tips,
- Be There!
We are in 2022 so it is safe to say goodbye to irrelevant social taboos that dads would have to leave the rooms when moms breastfeed! Understand what the new mom needs. From a breastfeeding pillow to a step-stool, to supporting cushions, to helping the baby latch, it is important you are physically present to help the mom do this better. Giver her company when she is feeding, ‘coz is going to need the help and support to talk to!
- Ensure The Mom Is Well-Fed
If you are living in a nuclear family, it is the dad’s responsibility to ensure the mom is well-fed to help feed the baby in turn. Be it making a short snack when she is tied up, or helping with preparing the next meal so she isn’t low on energy and nutrition would mean a lot to the mother’s physical and mental health.
- Help Burp The Baby
Heads up! Feeding the baby is a very time-consuming and exhausting process. By the end of a feed session, the mom is tired and worn out so any help you can do, after the feeding is always welcome. Collect the baby from the mom and help burp the baby. This again, takes practice and might take some time for the baby too, but is a great chance to bond with the baby for dads. (And hey, be prepared for some spit-ups too!)
- Moms Can Pump, So Dads Can Pump
Not just for working new moms, but even for new moms at home, pumping and storing the milk can be a great idea to catch up on some much-needed rest. Especially at night. Help out the new mom by feeding the bottle of pumped milk to the baby so mommy can catch up on some sleep.
- Help Out With The Chores
Remember, it is a joint effort to raise kids. A messy house is not something a mom will settle for, however tired or sleepless she might be. Rope in for extra help in case you aren’t there. But whenever you are available, make sure you help out with the chores to ease the burden on the new mom. If you have an older child, you can take the responsibility of engaging them or attending to them, so mommy can feed/rest with the new baby in peace.
Remember dads, your kids will grow up in the blink of an eye! As exhausting or scary as the new parent phase might sound, this is a magical period to bond with your little munchkin that just looks and smiles at you in awe. Treasure these moments, and remember to be there to help Mumma as she sails through one of the most challenging yet rewarding journeys of her life!
The author is the Founder and CEO, of Kidsstoppress. Views are personal.