Read as much as you can about being a parent before your first child is born (magazines, books, articles, etc). Once the baby is here, the focus becomes the child. Sleeping and adapting to having 24-hour care for another human being is the focus, not the “how to”. The first 6 months are a blur. Preparation is key to becoming a successful parent.
Preparation is the key to success for anything. The more parenting magazines, books, and websites you can read the better prepared you will be for anything that may come your way.
Take classes, talk to your doctors and seek advice from trusted parents in your circle.
I remember thinking to myself, “Why do I have to go to a breast-feeding class?” But when I got there, I learned so much about what my wife would go through. I was then able to comfort her when those challenges arose. I look back and am grateful for being open-minded enough to attend all the courses, but most specifically the breastfeeding class.
Another course we took was child care 101. We learned how to change a diaper. You may be thinking, “how difficult could it be to change a diaper?”It’s not easy when the most precious thing in the world to you seems so fragile and you don’t want to break it. I’m grateful I took that class.
I remember reading The Expectant Father and learning about what my wife was going through during her pregnancy. That book gave me the patience and knowledge to be able to comfort and understand that her hormones and emotions were all over the place. Understanding those issues gave me the patience to get through some of the more difficult days. I knew it was not personal; it was a part of being pregnant. She was not taking things out on me; she was reacting to the change in her body, and I happened to be the closest person on whom to vent.
I remember using Facebook as a resource. I private messaged all of my friends from high school who had already had children and asked them for the one piece of advice they wish somebody had given them. I received some incredible answers and wisdom.
All I am saying is do not wait until you are six feet deep into the pool of parenting to learn how to swim. Start at the steps of conception and get used to it while you are still awaiting your tiny miracle. I hope you are reading this book before you are a father, so you can be more successful at being a parent. If not, it’s never too late and the nuggets in this book will get you prepared for the entire journey of parenthood.
"I love how it is written as a tool. Not a book you can just read through and put up on the shelf, it is an action book, and when you come across this issue of parenting grab the book and look for suggestions." - Lisa Bechtol
© 2020 by Be The Dad You Want To Have Inc.