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What impact does an involved father have on the life of the child and father?

by Maxine
Posted August 26 2010 12:07pm
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Dad's involvement in his baby's life is important for baby's development as well as a healthy family life. The early years are critically important to a child’s healthy development and positive parenting is the most powerful path to ensure that healthy development. Yet, nearly 30% of Canadian children under the age of 6 have a social, emotional or learning problem that is related to the kind of parenting these children experience.

Expectant dads dream of being the best dad in the world and are committed to doing everything possible to realize this dream. Here are some facts about the impact a father's involvement has on his family.

  • Children who have involved fathers are more likely to be curious and eager to explore their environment.
  • Men's emotional involvement with their children provides a mental balance to their work-related stress, giving them something besides work that is very important in their lives.
  • Studies show that children who have involved fathers are more likely to grow up to have long-term, successful marriages.
  • Fathers who are involved in their children's lives find parenthood satisfying, are happier in their marriage in mid-life,  are more likely to participate in the community and are less likely to abuse substances.

Dad's involvement is needed to create a healthy, stimulating environment for his new family. This will certainly provide your baby with the best opportunities for a long and healthy life. Moms can help dads become more involved in their children's lives by supporting dad’s parenting abilities, viewing him as a competent parent and approaching parenting as a joint effort.
 

 

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Dad’s Guidelines for Survival

by Maxine
Posted August 4 2011 12:32pm
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While the first few weeks with your new baby may be a rollercoaster of emotions and responsibilities, Dad, the following are some proven ways that can help you cope.

  • Consider taking parental leave from work.
  • Accept or seek help from family members and friends.
  • Share your needs, fears, desires and feelings about the birth of your baby with Mom.
  • Discourage visitors politely, if any of you are too tired.
  • Guard against unhelpful or unwanted advice
  • Make time with Mom to strengthen your relationship.
  • Be sensitive to Mom's physical and emotional needs.
  • Help with the household chores—keep an inventory. 
  • Nourish Mom if she’s nursing—bring her snacks and drinks.
  • Make sure Mom takes time for herself (that is, offer to take the baby for a walk while she takes a bath).
  • Make some time for yourself.

 

Are you a dad? What tips can you add to our list? How did you survive the first few weeks with your new baby? Leave a comment below and let us know!

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Coping: What If I Feel Like I Can’t Manage with My New Baby?

by Guest
Posted August 5 2010 11:33am
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It is very important that you find ways to get some help with your new baby, even though it isn't easy.

 

Try the following to help you cope with your new baby:

  • Get out of the house for fresh air, exercise and to change your environment. Exercise helps to improve mood and is a way to deal with stress. 

  • Find community resources such as exercise classes (e.g. stroller fitness), and parent and child groups as a way to meet others and to build your support system.

  • Check out local parks, libraries or even coffee shops and try to meet other new parents in your neighbourhood.

  • Arrange to have some time alone on a regular basis, time when you are responsible only for yourself.

  • Arrange for time alone with your partner.

  • Eat well.

  • Structure your day, setting small goals. For example, getting one load of laundry done and a rest in the afternoon. Going to the parent drop-in centre and making a large pot of stew for dinner and freezing the rest for a dinner next week. Don’t expect to get a lot of tasks completed – caring for a new baby takes a lot of time.

  • Sleep when you can and every time your baby sleeps. Getting more rest will help you to cope.

  • Ask for help with your baby and household chores.

  • Find someone to talk to who is a really good listener.

  • Try to accept and express negative feelings and thoughts. Think about keeping a journal.

  • Encourage yourself to think positively – write down the good or funny things that happen to remind yourself of them during bad moments.

 

If you find yourself feeling close to the breaking point, having a lot of trouble dealing with day to day activities, crying a lot, having trouble eating and sleeping, or feeling all your relationships are in trouble, it's time to get some outside help. Discuss this with your physician or health care provider. Don't hesitate.

In addition, you may want to contact a service, like Postpartum Adjustment Support Services-Canada. If you are in Canada, call 1-800-897-6660 for information on services near you. The earlier these problems are treated, the easier it will be on you, your baby and your family.

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Birth Control - Natural Methods

by Maxine
Posted August 19 2010 02:38pm
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Natural methods do not use chemicals or barriers to prevent pregnancy. Natural methods include abstinence from intercourse, fertility awareness methods (FAM), lactational amenorrhea method (LAM) and withdrawal.

Fertility Awareness Method (FAM)

This method involves the couple charting Mom's fertility signs to determine when she is fertile. The fertility signs used include Mom's waking temperature, cervical fluid and position of her cervix. Couples can choose to abstain from intercourse at the time of Mom's fertility or to use a barrier method at this time. This method may also be used to help a couple plan a pregnancy.

Effectiveness:
The effectiveness rate is about 90% if a motivated couple uses the method consistently and abstains during a Mom's fertile phase.

Benefits:

  • Promotes communication and responsibility between the couple.
  • Has no health risks or side effects.
  • May increase a woman's awareness and understanding of her body.
  • Has minimal costs- only the purchase of a basal thermometer (Glossary term: Basal thermometers are very sensitive thermometers that can detect the smallest shift in the body’s temperature. and charts to plot her symptoms.) and charts to plot her signs of fertility.

      
Limitations:

  • Failure rate is higher than some other methods of contraception.
  • Requires time to take a class or read a book about the principles of FAM.
  • Takes about 2 menstrual cycles for Mom and Dad to become comfortable with applying the principles.
  • Requires commitment and cooperation from Dad.
  • May be challenging and less reliable when breastfeeding due to periods of fertility.
     

Lactational Amenorrhea Method (LAM) or Breastfeeding Method

Breastfeeding can act as a natural form of child spacing The hormones that are released during breastfeeding can prevent ovulation. For this method to work effectively for a couple, all three of the following conditions must be met: 1.Mom must be breastfeeding her baby exclusively; 2. Mom's menstrual period has not returned; and 3. Their baby is less than 6 months old. Exclusive breastfeeding means that mom is not giving baby anything other than her breast milk, every 4 hours or less.
 
Effectiveness:
LAM is 85% effective if the criteria listed above are followed consistently.
 

Benefits:

  • No health risks to Mom.
  • No prescription is needed.
  • No cost of supplies
  • Mom can use this method before her 6 week medical check-up.
  • This method can be combined with Fertility Awareness Methods.

Limitations:

  • Mom is not protected against sexually transmitted diseases.
  • Once their baby is not exclusively breastfed at least every 4 hours or less, Mom's period returns, or their baby is 6 months old, then Mom and Dad need to use another method of birth control.
     

 There are other methods of birth control. Learn More >>

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