Most men come to Boot Camp for New Dads because their wife/partner has signed them up, but are pleasantly surprised to find that they really get a lot out of the workshop.
The biggest surprise? That babies don’t take that long to figure out, but new moms can throw them for a loop!
Boot Camp is based on veterans dads (with their babies) telling dads-to-be about the challenges and experiences they faced becoming fathers, including handling new moms. With that in mind, we’d like to pass along some of the advice and stories that the vets have been sharing with the rookies:
- “You’ll be surprised at how protective you’ll feel towards your wife and baby.”
- “Don’t be shy about telling visitors if mom’s not up for it.”
- “Moms go through a big emotional swing and you may be the brunt of it.”
- “After 18 months, I finally got my wife back.”
- “It will turn around and she’ll become the woman you knew again.”
- “Keep the communication open with your wife. Keep talking to each other.”
- “Breastfeeding is hard and takes a lot of support.”
- “Sounds trite, but teamwork, teamwork, teamwork.”
- “Things that may not be a big deal to you can mean a big deal to mom, like doing a few extra dishes, or getting up and getting the baby at night for her to nurse. Being a new mom is exhausting and she’ll be wiped out for weeks.”
- “My wife was struggling with a bad case of the baby blues, so after I’d returned to work, I would ask her how she was each day before I left the house. If she said ‘not great’, I would suggest that she do something to get out of the house, like call her sister to go walk around the mall. Sometimes I would even call her sister myself and ask her to go pick her up. Then at lunch time, I’d call and check in to see how her day was going. She could have done all this herself, but when you’re down, it’s hard to get past feeling overwhelmed.”
- “My wife and I made a pact before our baby came. If she starting showing any signs of postpartum depression, I let her know that I would call her doctor. Agreeing to this ahead of time took a little of the pressure off.”