When talking about pregnancy, a good majority of my posts talk about what “I’m” feeling or what “I’m” experiencing. While these past 9 months have been some of the best I’ve ever experienced, I realized that again the word “I” pops up. YES, while pregnancy is mostly happening to me and my body, what is easy to forget is that I didn’t just end up this way by myself. Additionally, I am not the only one excitedly (and lets be honest— nervously) waiting for the baby to come and turn my world upside right.
If your husband or partner, is anything like mine, they want to be involved in the pregnancy but usually are very unsure as to how this can be accomplished. I mean, they aren’t the ones visiting the OBGYN monthly and then weekly, seeing their bodies change or feel those wonderful baby kicks (or at least not until later on anyway). As women, we immediately establish that bond but for our loved one, they have to wait for it and even work a little bit harder for it.With this in mind, in today’s post I have listed out some ways to help involve your partner so that they can feel included in your pregnancy too!
- Take the pregnancy test together. Right from the start, this is a great way to keep your partner in the loop. Now, I know it can be super exciting and fun to make it a surprise but personally I enjoyed having my husband involved when waiting to find out the test result. For us, getting pregnant was something we both wanted very much and we wanted to share in that excitement together of finding out. I also enjoyed having my husband by my side when waiting for the result because as I am sure many women who have been pregnant or are trying to get pregnant can relate, getting a negative result sucks. Granted, it didn’t take too many tries for my husband and I to be successful, but none-the-less it was also great to have that extra support when it didn’t exactly turn out the way I had hoped.
- Get creative when announcing to extended family/friends. Finding out you are pregnant is such an amazing thing but what makes it that much more fun is when you can finally announce to your family and friends. Now I am not saying you need to rent a billboard ad or anything but have your husband help you in coming up with a creative way to announce. Perhaps create a witty instagram post or figure out a cute and fun way to tell your parents. Either way, let him lead the charge on this one and have a little fun!
- Visit the OBGYN together and keep him aware of any upcoming appointments (even the not very exciting ones). For us personally, my husband did not attend every single appointment. Between work schedules and availability, it was usually much easier for me to go by myself and then keep him updated afterwards. However, aside from coming to the big appointments (the first ultrasound and 20 week anatomy scan) he did come occasionally, when available, to the less exciting ones. While a lot of the appointment can be boring or uncomfortable, I felt this was a great thing for my husband to be apart of, especially when he got to hear the baby’s heart beat. Not only did he get to see what I am experiencing first hand but it also allotted him the opportunity to ask the doctor questions and express any concerns.
- Let him make a decision every once in a while. Now I can occasionally be bit of a control freak but the one thing I did let me husband choose was if we would find out the gender or not. I had personally preferred to keep it a surprise but after my husband had expressed his interest in knowing, I let him call the shot. Since a lot of decisions going forward in the pregnancy are usually made by the woman, I wanted this one thing to be his choice. While I do think it would have been so much fun to wait until the day I gave birth, I will admit that by seeing my husband know and prepare to have a daughter has made this experience that much more special. I think he would even admit that it has helped him bond more with the pregnancy because he can now better envision and prepare for what his future holds with a little girl on the way.
- Go shopping or register together for baby clothes/ products. While I think this area is usually one that many men may not have any interest in, I still think its important to at least go out and get his insight and involvement. For myself, I brought my husband out to look at strollers. I wanted him to push a few around and practice carrying a car seat so that he could feel comfortable. After this was done, we then made our way past the baby girl clothes and got to look at a few things. It was fun for me to see my husband get excited when pointing out things he liked vs the things he hated. I know for myself, shopping definitely made the experience of being pregnant that much more real and I can definitely say that it did the same for him as well.
- Share the silly details of what you are experiencing. From your belly expanding, stretch marks, big boobs, dark nipples, and more, pregnancy is a very strange time. While some things can be a bit embarrassing, I find it best to just acknowledge it all so that you can laugh at it and then move on. If you have a close relationship with your partner, let him get in on the laughter as well. For myself, I have found that by sharing the “not so pretty parts” of pregnancy has actually made it a lot easier for me to accept.
- Let him get handy when it comes to setting things up. Being a control freak, as I just mentioned, I tend to be the type of person who doesn’t ask for help and will just do things on her own. Now seeing that as I’m pregnant, I know that there are things I need to slow it down with and most definitely things I SHOULD NOT by myself. If you are similar to me, this is a great time to involve your partner. From setting up the crib (which is definitely a two man operation), to installing the car seat and more, let your guy work up a sweat and take over.
- Invite him to the baby shower. Most baby showers are usually just a thing for the girls. Mine was no different. However, I did make it a point to let my husband know that he should come by at the end so that he could open a few gifts with me and also see family and friends. While I did not have one, I have heard of “Jack & Jill” parties where it a mixture of both guys and gals. Again, since it did take two to tango and make this baby, I think your partner should most definitely join in on the celebrations. Hey, its their baby too!
- Exercise Together. If you have been following me on instagram, you have seen the few videos where I convinced my husband to join me in a home workout. This is usually VERY RARE but it always so much fun. Being that having a healthy and fit pregnancy has been one of my top priorities, having the support of my husband has meant very much. Especially when their have been days when pregnancy fatigue and cravings want to win, its great to have another person to hold me accountable and keep me moving. Lately, since I am at the tail end of this wonderful ride, it helps to have a partner that will walk with you in hopes that it will induce labor 🙂
- Invite him to share his feelings. Becoming a parent is not like going out and buying a puppy. This is a life changing event! For women, I think we have a better ability to adapt to this change because we get to feel it happening first-hand. For our partners, this isn’t the case. From worrying about you to their growing babe, there is a lot that your partner has to think about but unfortunately not a lot they can really do. By taking time during dinner or on a daily walk, ask your partner about how he is feeling about soon becoming a parent and if their is anything weighing on him. Not only will this help them but may also help you, especially if you at all are feeling nervous about anything.