Most mothers know breastfeeding is one of the hardest challenges of motherhood. Nursing is something most moms want to do, not all can for many reasons, and some give up because of challenges they face. When you are a breastfeeder- you are the cow…ugh I mean food supply. No one can give you a 2am break to get some needed sleep or a 6pm break so you can actually eat a meal with two hands. I am very lucky that I have a 100% supportive husband for me being the only one who can feed our child. One breastfeeding session alone can take around 30 minutes resulting in a lot of lost sleep for mommy and less chores she can do around the house. (Oh darn on that second one). Parenting is a team effort, so DADS here is where you can pick up your end of the bargain with some tips to help your wife through this challenging time.
- When the baby cries in the middle of the night go get them first! Yes that newborn probably wants milk but first that little bundle must be changed. This allows mommy some time to go to the bathroom or rub the crust out of her eye before a 3am feeding.
- After you have changed the baby and passed them off to mom make sure she has necessities: a drink and entertainment. After my husband always passes of the baby to me, he makes sure I have my phone and a bottle of water in arms reach. There is something about nursing that makes you INSTANTLY thirsty, and I’m not going to lie, if I wasn’t Instagram stalking people at 4am I would fall asleep on the job! He even stepped it up a notch and would put my hair up in a bun for me so it didn’t get tangled in the little one’s fingers. I KNOW he is amazing.
- Remember mommy’s job is input, your job is output. Yep, if the baby is dirty just go change them! Once you’ve master the art of diaper changing and you’re not dealing with a stage ten blowout a diaper change can take minutes- remember breastfeeding can take almost thirty minutes.
- Do more chores-laundry, dishes, whatever! I pretty much a psycho when it comes to a clean house. There is nothing more frustrating to me when I am in the middle of cleaning or doing a chore when I have to stop what I’m doing to nurse. Then you just have to sit there for what feels like forever and STARE at the disaster that is your kitchen. So if your wifey has to pause a job, finish it for her OR even better start before that little gal or little man wants to eat.
- When mommy is nursing give a little massage! Breastfeeding can really hurt your back and/or arms. Personally, I carry a lot of tension in my neck and shoulders when breastfeeding and let me tell you its an amazing feeling when my husband is rubbing my shoulders when I am cuddling my son.
- If you’re wifey is a working and pumping mama wash those bottles like nobodies business! Pumping at work is a whole other challenge, then you find yourself home from a long day’s work to your more important job parenthood only to have to store ounces of breastmilk every night and breast pump attachments to wash. Ugh, I’m exhausted just typing the words! Help out mommy, she took time out of her workday, so now its your turn-wash, dry, store, label, freeze.
There are my tips for you dads! These are also not things I never asked my husband to do, these are things he just did ON HIS OWN to help me and support me through this journey.