9 babycare jobs for new dads

Sharpen your new-father skills when bub arrives and find favour with the missus with this cheat sheet.

9 babycare jobs for new dads1
Right after childbirth, mums form an almost instant connection to their little ones, because babies remember their mummies from their time in the womb and want to be close to them. Breastfeeding also gives mums a direct line to their mini-me.  

This often leaves fathers struggling to their find their place in the picture. When they can’t, they end up feeling useless and disconnected with their newborn. Daddies, if you’re earnest about being hands-on with baby, the good news is that you have plenty of ways to divvy up childcare duties.

Don’t worry that you might not be qualified for these tasks ― no one is born knowing how to get a baby to sleep or prepare a bottle. Nor does your wife, even though she looks like she’s acing the job. We all learn on the job, one failed diaper change at a time.

By the way, everyone has a different way of completing a task, so don’t worry if your way isn’t the same as your wife’s. Be confident that you are doing a good job and be assured that your family will love you for trying.

Use these nine tips as a starting point and in no time, you will be surprised at how quickly you pick up this dad thing!

Duty #1 Changing diapers

Everyone has to start somewhere when it comes to babycare ― there’s no better place to begin your journey than to change diapers. We will be honest, it will take a few tries to perfect the art of getting the diaper on the right way –―yes, there is a wrong way! But practice makes perfect is the only way to master it is. The good news is that newborns poop a lot and you’ll surely get a lot of training. So, instead of hoping that someone else will take care of that weird smell coming from bubba’s bottom, roll up your sleeves (put on that gas mask if you have to) and get cracking, daddy!

The more opportunities mum gets to put her feet up, the sooner she will recover from her birth injuries and be able to fully dedicate herself to her newborn, and you, too.

Duty #2 Bringing baby to mummy for feedings

As helpful as your wife wants to be, the first few weeks should be all about her recovery. She’s just pushed a human being out of her body after all. So, let your better half rest up as you bring baby to her for feedings or cuddles. After mummy is done feeding, take over the burping portion. The more opportunities mum gets to put her feet up, the sooner she will recover from her birth injuries and be able to fully dedicate herself to her newborn, and you, too.

Duty #3 Getting baby to sleep

One of best things about infants ― besides that glorious newborn smell ― is that they fall asleep just about everywhere and anywhere. However, thanks to their ever-changing sleep cycles and brain development, there will be days (and nights) where bub will refuse to sleep for hours at end. Trying to get him to nod off is going to be a team effort, but it’s one where you can take the lead. Need some tips? Invest in a good baby wrap or carrier, place bub in it and take him for a long walk. This works like a charm always as the bouncy movements lull them right off into la la land. 

Duty #4 Be a strong emotional support for your wife

Of all the duties you will be undertaking after baby arrives, this might be the most important one. Your wife is recovering from childbirth and her body is still going through post-partum changes. She is facing one challenge after the other with baby and trying to build confidence as a first-time mum. She needs all the support she can get, especially when she’s bombarded by conflicting advice from her own mother, friends and of course, the Internet. It’s very important for a new mum to take care of her physical and mental health, so if your wife is feeling frustrated with something or someone, take her side and let her know you support her ― no matter what. Most of the time, she doesn’t even need you to fix her problems, but just to lend an ear, offer a shoulder to cry on and give unlimited bear hugs.