The traditional role of the father is as the secondary parent to mom. It may seem at times that dad can’t develop the same relationship with baby as mom can. The reasons can be the demand of work, mom’s relationship with the baby due to nursing, or the fact that men in general have lesser experience in these areas, but there are various ways a father can get involved in the activities for babies. The truth to developing a fulfilling and strong bond with your child is to put in the time. And here are a few things to consider.
Activities For Babies, Besides Nursing
If you’ve decided to nurse, Mom will develop a natural relationship with baby, while dad lacks that time. However, there are several different things the baby needs throughout the day that dad can take care of. Bath time, story time, play time on the floor, or just be the one to take the initiative when something comes up, like when the baby wakes in the middle of the night. Be the one to arrive with the bottle. This is called, taking advantage of each precious moment.
Have a Conversation
Talk to your baby. When he or she makes noises, repeat them back. Act as though you’re having a conversation. Also, when changing a diaper or going to get a bottle, tell your baby what you’re doing. This will help to build trust, as they will know what to expect. Your child’s been listening to your voice for some time now, even before birth, so he or she knows what to listen for. Speak clearly and calmly, and always have a cheerful smile for your little one. This can also serve the dual purpose of teaching language skills.
Initiate the Physical Activities With Your Baby
Father’s are typically more physical that mom, and more likely to challenge a son or daughter. Be the one on the floor encouraging your baby to try things, such as tummy time, first steps, or any other play/learning opportunity, such as games for babies. These are great times for bonding and trust building. Let mommy kiss the boo-boos, while you encourage your little adventurer to go further.
Carrying and Car Seats
As the more physical of the parents, be the one to carry your child around, as well as the one to strap him or her into the car seat. These are special times for you and your baby.
Be sure this isn’t a competition, it’s a partnership. There’s plenty of work to go around, and mom can certainly use the rest. Being a good father and developing a strong bond with your child is as simple as putting in the time. Be an active member in his or her life in any capacity necessary. Putting in the time will make all the difference.