What Dads Expect When They're Expecting
What Dads Expect When Mom is Expecting
Myth No. 1: Pregnancy Is Just a Chick Thing continued...
Other worries, like how the household income will be affected by a new baby,
are often more intense for men than women. Such was the case for Brott, who was
adamant about reducing his work schedule when his first child, Tirzah, now 9,
was born so that he could spend more time at home.
"My wife was working part-time already, and it became a real source of
stress imagining how we were going to survive on two part-time incomes,"
Brott says. "But I didn't want to be the typical father who spends more
time at work than at home. I just wasn't going to do that." When his
employer balked at his request to continue his work as a labor relations
negotiator three days a week, Brott quit and began a free-lance writing
What's even harder is that men often lack a support system (sometimes even
keeping their wives in the dark) or role models in whom to confide about these
concerns. Their isolation can be all the more strained when men are creating
very different lives than the ones they grew up in or are part of as
"It's embarrassing for guys to talk about how much they love their kids
or the struggle they're having at work when they don't want to be there as much
as they used to," Brott explains. "It's like asking for directions.
It's saying 'I need help here,' or 'I have something I'm not able to handle
100% on my own.' "
Venus and Mars Can Share the Same Air
Mosio looks back on the months before his daughter, Lillian, now 5, was born
as an intimate time that brought him and his wife closer. "We snuggled a
lot and talked to the baby and caressed each other. It was a really close,
romantic time for us. I enjoyed the changes her body went through, watching her
belly grow and feeling the baby kick."
Not that he wasn't knocked off balance by the newness and tumult of it all
-- Louden's sudden mood swings and fears they both shared about the structure a
baby would bring to their previously carefree lives. The key was that they
talked about everything, a lot.
"Jennifer would read books and explain things to me," Mosio says.
"She'd say, 'This is what happens to my hormones, ad maybe this is why I'm
acting a little crazy,' " he says. "Men are sort of know-it-alls, but
once you let that go, it opens the door to understanding how the woman is
feeling." That, he says, helped them stay connected.
Experts emphasize that women need to let their partners in on what's
happening to them, particularly since men often feel frustrated and powerless
to help their mate through any discomfort or pain of the pregnancy, labor or
delivery. "If the woman's not very communicative, then she's never giving a
lead, and he never hooks into anything," explains Issokson.