For many men, nothing in their lives equals the thrill of becoming a father. A father is as important to a baby's development as is the mother. Children with active fathers have more confidence and do better in school. Taking care of a new baby is a learning experience for both mother and father.
It is normal to not know what to do. This can feel overwhelming and frustrating for both parents. Watch, ask questions, and find out what works best for you. If your baby seems to prefer its mother, don’t take it personally. Mothers usually feed their babies more often than fathers do. Know that things will even out soon.
Showing your baby love and affection through holding, cuddling, playing, and diaper changing helps your baby feel secure. Babies learn about the world through their senses. The sense of touch is probably the most developed sense that babies have. Holding your baby gently but firmly helps them feel secure. You may worry that babies are fragile or that you will drop them. Do not let your fears keep you from enjoying your baby. Close contact with your baby lets them know and trust you.
Here are some ideas that may help you as a new father:
If you feel frustrated, angry, or otherwise unable to take care of yourself or the baby's mother, talk with a trusted relative, an experienced father, a counselor, or your healthcare provider. If you feel frustrated enough to shake or hit your baby, stop and take a quiet break to calm yourself.
It is normal to feel challenged by your new responsibilities as a father. However, it can be one of the most rewarding and enjoyable experiences of your life.