“Pregnancy is a great balance in life – it brings out the worst mood swings in a wife and the best levels of tolerance in a husband. “
Here are some tips for the husbands:
- What to prepare before the pregnancy
- Make sure that at the time you find out the wonderful news, you and your wife don’t have any heavy work tasks by hands, i.e. thesis defense or final project due.
- Practice your patience and endurance.
- Buy one set of this or this, or something similar at CVS or Amazon for pregnancy test.
- (You both) Eat healthy food such as organic and non-gmo food, and do exercise. Stay away from smoking or alcohol.
- Allow 3-4 months from starting trying to getting pregnant.
- The entire pregnancy period (9 months) can be evenly divided into 3 trimesters, and according our experience their difficulty levels are:
- First trimester (1-3 months): hard
- Second trimester (4-6 months)： easier (for some people it can still be hard)
- Third trimester (7-9 months): medium (for some people it can be easy, or hard)
- First or second trimester:
Your wife will be: So you will need to: feeling sick/nausea in the morning/whole day; buy her vitamin B6, unsalted crackers which are helpful to reduce nausea; emotionally unstable; stay with her as much as you can; feeling like to eat what she not used to eat, and hate what she used to; find out what she likes to eat, and encourage her to eat less every meal, but more meals a day; feeling not like to eat/cook at home; eat out with her more often, preferably with you and her friends; preferring cold food rather than hot; give her cold or room temp water; having back pain very often; give her some massage such as this: https://youtu.be/-FFLWaU8uo4; and many unpredictable things. be patient with her.
- Second or third trimester:
- She might (or might not) feel better and she can eat more;
- Learn about the day of labor. Husbands will be of great help to the wives if they knows what’s happening, what to expect, and what to do. Believe or not, a husband who really knows the 4 labor stages, can even be functional as a “coach” to his wife, who encourages and instructs her;
- The 4-1-1 rule – a timing method to tell that your wife is on the one-way to deliver;
- The labor road map – what will happen step by step in the day of labor;
- The 4 stages of labor – how labor is progressed, what the signs are, what to do;
- Write your own birth plan (our birth plan example). Yes you do have rights on your own body and baby. So you can surely let the nurses, OBs, and midwives know your preference;
- Husband should prepare a cheat sheet (my cheat sheet example), reminding yourself what to do at what time;
- Consider taking a class. We took the Bradley Method class, which I cannot say enough good things about it.
- Try to enjoy these 3 months and plan a trip together. Keep in mind that you may not be able to travel in the next 12 months or more.
- What to say and not to say to your wife:
DO NOT Say:
Say: “Whoa! Are you eating again?” “You’re amazing and I’ve never been as proud of you as I am now.” “Every pregnant woman freaks out a bit, but it’s nothing to worry about. You’re fine.” “You want to discuss baby names again?” “Are you seriously crying over this?” “Wow! Beyoncé had a baby but you’d never know it. She looks amazing!” “You don’t need me at the doctor’s appointment, right?”