The day has finally come you get to take your little bundle of joy home! So many emotions going through your head. What should I do? How can I help? What is my role in all this? Your wife has chosen to breastfeed so you're in the clear! Nope! Not true. The fact she has chosen to breastfeed means she needs your help, love, and support more than ever! Yep, it's true. I believe that a key component to a happy breastfeeding journey is one where mom feels that love and support from the person she loves and trusts most in this world. You can tell her that you support her choice to breastfeed, but actions speak louder than words. How can you show your love and support, you wonder? Well read this blog to find out.
*1.) So your wife is choosing to exclusively breastfeed that's great, right? Yes of course it is, that is the way nature intended it to be. You may feel like you're not needed because you don't breastfeed, but it's quite the opposite that's when she needs you the most. You could say how proud you are of her or her for breastfeeding and that you are there for her as I'm sure you figured out by now that taking care of your wife is taking care of baby too, therefore you are already playing a role in their breastfeeding relationship. So just hearing that reassurance can put her mind at ease.
*2.) Lots of times spouses get uncomfortable over their wife breastfeeding in public and that's completely normal, it only becomes an issue when you try to force her to breastfeed a different way to make you comfortable. Just think, if you are uncomfortable that feeling may be times ten for her. So being able to put your discomfort on the back burner so that you can help her be comfortable is a sure way to show how much you care. A relaxed comfortable mama may mean more milk and a content baby. When a mom gets stressed baby can sense that and it could also impact her supply. So it's best not to add to her stress list & more so just work on taking some of it away. Pick your battles as any undue stress is the last thing a breastfeeding mom needs.
*3.) Research breastfeeding and inform yourself about things like mastitis, plugged duct, nipple pain so you can support her through some of the physical discomforts that may occur and sort of get an idea what she is going through to help her through it.
*4.) Always make sure she has water nearby and remind her to stay hydrated because sometimes they can forget. Being a new mom is, well, exhausting & you forget things.
*5.) Baby finally went to sleep so she starts to do the laundry and other household chores. You then escort her to bed and tell her to rest while baby is sleeping and you will finish the laundry. So that mom can truly put the "Sleep when baby sleeps" advice to good use.
*6.) Take over diaper and bath duty. You may think changing diapers is small, but everything going into baby must come out. Seeing as though she took care of what went in, it's only fair you take care of what comes out.
*7.) Randomly let her know how much you appreciate all she is doing for the baby by cooking her a nice meal and cleaning up the kitchen afterwards. We all know the key to happy milk producing mama is staying mama staying nourished herself so take some cooking classes and keep those meals coming she sure does appreciate it and so will baby!
*8.) You are out and about together and baby gets hungry ask her where she would like to sit and what you can do to make her and baby most comfortable. If anyone dares to give a dirty look or make a nasty remark you shut them down and you shut them down quickly and you make sure she knows that you fully support her breastfeeding anywhere and anyway she wants to. Nothing is more sexier than a daddy publicly professing his love and support to the mother of his child.
*9.) So it's been awhile since you two got intimate with each other and it's starting to make you feel left out and maybe even neglected. Really try to put your feelings on the back burner. I know that may be asking a lot, but don't take it personal. She just had a baby, her boobs are engorged, leaking, chapped & she is sleep deprived. She probably feels more like a cow than a sexy bedroom Goddess. Every once in awhile throwing her a compliment telling her how beautiful she is despite the fact she has tangled hair, milk stained tops, and a baby on her hip. Sooner or later she will get out of her funk and she will make it worth your while , I promise. She will also remember you still found her gorgeous when she felt her worst and nothing makes a mom feel more loved & supported than that!
Now I realize that you may work out of the house to provide so maybe you can't do everything on this list on a daily basis and that's okay. Just do all that you can during the times you are home. Even making a couple calls home to her while you're working just to let her know you're thinking of her could make her whole day! Daddies can play a role in the breastfeeding relationship if they really want to. Nothing makes a breastfeeding mom feel as loved and supported than her spouse having her back! So come on daddies time to step it up your wife needs you...