We’ve come up with a list of 5 things that can aid in the process to becoming a more involved, loving and all-around hero dad that kids deserve. But again, there are no rules. You don’t have to do them all to be a good dad. There will be some that you identify with more than others, and that’s great. Being a dad is all about finding your own path to what makes you and your children the happiest. So read through the list, pick a few you want to implement, and have fun!
- Great husband before great dad
Being a great dad starts with being a great husband first. You have to start getting involved in your marriage once again. Your baby needs a stable and loving home before anything else. Keep working on your marriage because a baby’s arrival is not the end but a beginning of a new chapter in both your lives. It is a huge transition but you can take it easy with every step. You have to be involved in the entire parental process.
- Be your own kind of Dad
No two people are same. Similarly, no two parents are same. One dad’s way will differ from another dad. It means different things to different people. There are various versions of being a dad but you need not stick to one. Rather, try it all and be it all. You can be the protector dad with a huge soft heart or the cool one dancing to your kid’s tunes. You can be the gadget geek or a best-chef-in-the-world-dad, it depends on you. You have to be honest with whatever you are trying to be. It is your own identity as a father.
- Your normal pre-child life
This is a huge change and you are freaking out. You will want to slip into this new lifestyle and stick with it. But it’s not important to do so. You don’t have to lock yourself up only because you are scared what might happen to your ‘baby’.
You can take your time to immerse yourself in the new life but after you are done adjusting, make sure you go out and try to return to your normal lifestyle as soon as possible. Arrival of a baby doesn’t mean end of your personal life. It is an addition to your family not a subtraction from your life. Go back to your normal routine with your wife. It’s also easier to travel with a baby than you might think.
You can take your baby out on breakfast and brunches whenever you go. Take them to your little shopping spree and plan to travel with them. You must be back to doing regular things as much as possible. You will be less stressed and give you and your partner the time you need to feel like a couple again.
- Help in ‘Mommy-time’
Though you can help your wife with a lot of things, she will be more responsible biologically. This can make her even more exhausted and stressed at the same time. You cannot say that “Dads” play the most important part in parenting. Its not a very usable phrase because people have never looked at it in the way it was meant to be. There are two people involved in parenting (until you choose to be a single parent of course). Fathers are the support a mother needs at this time. You have to be emotionally and physically present with your wife and baby.
The best advice for you at this time is to allow mommy to take breaks. She definitely needs time for herself. The tiring day and nights will exhaust her physically and emotionally more. You must look after the baby when they nap. Ask your wife to take time off and catch up with her friends o family while you can look after the baby. Let her have some time to breathe freely. You will get your time to bond with your baby even more with this.
- Be affectionate with your baby
You have to be affectionate with your baby, especially as they get older day by day. They will not understand the word “love”. You can keep telling them any word for that matter but for a large period of initial stage, they will not know what you say. Words seem meaningless
Kids better understand touch more than language. When you hug, snuggle or kiss them, they will feel utterly loved. This is basic human connection and communication that begins really early. Fathers often feel shy when it comes to showing love. You need to understand that it’s not “manly” to be stone hearted. You have to shatter that image and come in contact with a better and more genuine father image for your baby. A baby needs to feel loved. It is in your power to make them feel so, no matter their age. When a kid knows they are loved, they end up being a happy child.
Always remember, its important to be genuine. The society may tell you to be “a man”. But the right definition of a man is the one who is honest. The one who respects and loves and make people around them feel loved. Be the dad you wanted when you were a child. Rest will fall into place.
Also read : What’s the role of new age father?