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New Dads: What to Expect After Baby Arrives

Learn what's ahead once your baby is born.
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How a Woman Feels the First Weeks at Home continued...

What you can do:

  • Become a master at changing diapers and bathing your baby.
  • Help out by doing the household heavy lifting: grocery shopping, laundry, and meals.
  • Be patient, especially when it comes to physical contact. For now, show affection with your hugs and kisses. She also may appreciate the occasional foot rub.    

Breastfeeding may not be a breeze. While it seems like it should come naturally, breastfeeding isn't easy for all moms and babies. Your partner may get frustrated if your baby has trouble feeding. She may have sore nipples at first while your baby learns to latch on properly. Some women get clogged milk ducts, which can be a painful problem. And because baby needs to eat every 2 to 3 hours, mom isn't getting a lot of sleep either. 

What you can do:

  • Encourage her to sleep when the baby sleeps.
  • Make it your job to handle nighttime diaper changes.
  • If she is using a pump, learn how to clean it.

Emotional changes. Some new moms have bouts of sadness and anxiety, known as the "baby blues." Feeling sad, anxious, or down can be a normal part of adjusting to motherhood. However, if these feelings get worse, are severe, or last more than a couple of weeks, she may have postpartum depression, and she should talk about it with her doctor.

What you can do:

  • If you notice she's been a bit down, ask her how she's feeling. Just talking with you may help a lot.
  • Encourage her to take breaks and get out of the house while you watch the baby, even for just a short time.
  • If you notice that she has symptoms of postpartum depression, encourage her to get help. She may not realize that she's depressed.

Is There Sex After a Baby?

As the saying goes, you enter the delivery room as a couple and leave as a family. And it's true -- your relationship with your partner won't be the same as before. For many couples, that means sex comes to a screeching halt after their baby is born. What's a guy like you to do?

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