Dads bonding with their newborn
Many fathers especially those who are eager to fulfill their duties and responsibilities ask the question: How can I develop and strengthen bonding with my newborn child? In as much as there are many ways to live life to the fullest, there are also varied ways on how a father can establish a bond with his newborn child.
What about dads and newborns?
Bonding is considered to be an essential factor in a child’s psychological and sociological development. It is an affectionate attachment which is established not just between a mother and a newborn child but also between a father and a child. But many fathers especially those who are eager to fulfil their duties and responsibilities ask the question: How can I develop and strengthen bonding with my newborn child? In as much as there are many ways to live life to the fullest, there are also varied ways on how a father can establish a bond with his newborn child.
Dads and Newborns: Deepen your relationship
If a strong emotional attachment can be formed between the mother and the child while the unborn baby is still inside the womb, then this is also possible between the father and the child during the mother’s pregnancy. First of all, the father needs to establish a bond of intimacy with the mother so that the experience of the mother is something pleasant. The mother’s feelings are said to cause an impact on the unborn child. In this sense, the father should deepen his relationship with his wife and establish a loving attachment with his unborn baby.
Dads and Newborns: Talk to your baby
Second, the father should talk to his child while in the mother’s womb. The unborn baby, in an advance stage, is very sensitive to sounds and he or she can hear and recognize the voice of his or her parents. The baby can also distinguish between his mother and his father’s voice. My husband was able to prove this when I was pregnant with our first baby. During my first few months of pregnancy, he touched my tummy while talking to the baby. He got so excited when the baby moved as he was talking to her when I was already six months pregnant. This indicated that our child recognized his voice.
Dads and Newborns: Provide daily care-giving
When the awaited moment arrives, the father’s attachment to the newly born child undergoes a challenging stage. Basically, bonding with the newborn baby is a product of daily care-giving. However, caring for the baby is not only the responsibility of the mother but is also the responsibility of the father. Care-giving is the best way to establish an intimate bond between the father and the newborn child.
Dads and Newborns: Spend time with your child
A father must realize how important it is to spend quality time with his child and to know how exciting it is to enjoy every stage of his growing child. Responding to the child’s needs during her early years is also crucial to her emotional and relational development. The child will feel secure if her needs are provided for immediately and she feels unloved when her needs are not met. Thus, the role of a care giving father is of utmost importance in bonding with the child.
I could still remember how my husband bonded with our child. Initially, he was scared to hold and bathe our newborn baby because she looks so fragile but he learned to do it. He also took part in changing wet diapers, in preparing the bottles, and in preparing food for his daughter. He also spent quality time alone with his daughter by bringing her outside of the house in the morning and talking to her. Aside from these bonding activities, he also realized the importance of physical contact in establishing a close relationship with the child.
There was one night when my baby would not stop crying no matter what I did. Consequently, my husband thought of letting her lie down with her stomach on his chest and she was able to sleep soundly throughout the night in that position. Eventually, this became my daughter’s favourite sleeping position. She was so used to it that one day when my husband was so tired; he was unconscious that my baby already slipped from his chest down to the bed. Fortunately, she was not harmed. As my husband continued to bond with my baby, I observed that there was a point that my daughter wants to be held by her father than by me.
From my husband’s experience, I can really prove that it is not impossible for fathers to bond with their child if they would only take the initiative and the time. So, for all the fathers out there, let me sum up what you can do to have bonding with your child.
Hold and carry her as often as you can. Take time to bathe her. Prepare food for her or feed her. Change her clothes and wet diapers. Talk to her constantly. Do everything you can to spend time with her. Through these, you ensure your child’s needs are met. Remember, you contributed to the procreation of your child. Wouldn’t it be also good to continue contributing to your child’s well-being? Dads, enjoy bonding moments with your newborn!