Sometimes it can be tough for dads to feel like they have a strong connection to their children. Whereas moms fall in love during their pregnancy, fathers start on day one. Plus, more often than not, moms play a bigger role in the day-to-day care of baby while they recover from the delivery. Here are some ways dads can both with baby so they don’t feel left out.
1. Mom should leave them alone for a bit
If mom spends the most time with baby, it can be easy to “take over” if she doesn’t think things are being done properly. “That’s now how she likes to be held,” she might say, or “Here just let me do it.” If mom is constantly hovering nearby when dad is spending time with baby, he’ll never feel like they have a special relationship. Neither parent should be afraid to leave their spouse with the baby.
2. Dad should hold baby as much as possible
If mom is breastfeeding or the daily caregiver, she’ll spend a lot of time with the baby in her arms. Dad can squeak in his own physical contact time by holding baby whenever possible. Always remember that you don’t need a reason to a hold your baby. Hold baby while you read a book or the newspaper or check your email (and read aloud – they love voices!). Hold baby while you relax and watch TV or when you’re walking around a store (instead of loading them in the stroller).
3. Start learning songs and rhymes
Sing nursey rhymes and baby songs as early as possible, even when baby doesn’t understand what you’re doing. Over time they will associate the fun and silly sounds with dad and begin to cement a bond. Eventually they’ll sing along! As you sing or play games, use baby’s name as much as you can so they associate it with themselves and you.
4. Give lots of a touch
Children respond well to physical contact. In fact, it satisfies an emotional and intellectual need for stimulation. Even if dad isn’t holding baby, touch their hands, feet, legs, arms and belly. Move baby’s extremities during playtime.
5. Play a big role in sleep
During the first few months, it will take work to help your baby fall and stay asleep. Make this a two-person job. When baby needs to be rocked, dad should take a shift too. Falling asleep is a vulnerable experience that kids have to learn. They bond strongly to whichever parent is part of that process, so make sure both are.
How did your baby’s father bond with your child?
Written by Cindy Perry, Inventor of the pello, Luxe Floor Pillows
Cindy, a Texas girl, put herself through college working at a children’s library and sewing at night. When she met her husband and had her two boys, she decided to stay home to care for them while designing window treatments and bedding.
When Cindy’s first son was learning to sit up, he would always fall through the pillows she set around him, hit his head, and cry. Besides, setting her child down on the hardwood floors on just a blanket always seemed so cold. Using her years of sewing and design skills, Cindy took inspiration from a woman in her breastfeeding class and got to work. With some scrap fabric and a few tweaks, pello was born! pello is a luxe floor pillow that helps children feel safe, warm and protected.
For more information, visit mypello.com.
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