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From Dads for dads – key messages from other dads…
It’s New For Dads
New dads are on a steep learning curve and need support and guidance right from the start. Some men may never have held a baby before they become dads – making the opportunity to be involved in antenatal and postnatal care a great introduction for them.  Some dads might find being at the birth traumatic, too raw an experience, or may describe it as ‘scary’, and find it hard to move past these feelings and associated memories.  Dads need to know that it is normal to find having a baby and being a new dad can be hard and the best thing can be to talk about it.

Dads taking time off work 
Ideally it is great for a new dad to be around as much as possible in the early weeks and to be part of the journey of this his new family.  The paid parental leave scheme has helped more dads to have more time off when baby is first home and may be something you can talk with your employer about (Info for employers).

Dads need to find their own way with their baby
Sometimes a dad bonds immediately with his baby, whilst at other times, he may find his own way over a period of time. As every baby is different, so too is every dad.  It’s great if Mums can create space and encourage dad to build his confidence and also to accept that he may do things differently to her.

Dads and family friendly workplaces
Becoming a new dad is a big step in life and as a father your role is very important. There is a lot of talk about Work/Life balance and it is felt some progress has been made in both the public and private spheres, with respect to policies and programs available to assist men and women to better combine their work and family lives. (Read more)
Technology has assisted in this however the impact of new technology on family time is another concern* which whilst facilitating working flexibly from home, can also mean that work can intrude 24/7 which in turn can increase the pressure and/or guilt felt to respond immediately to work demands meaning you never do leave work behind despite your new family demands. Talk to your employer about what opportunities may be available at this time, and if you work for yourself have a look at your workflow and see if you can adjust it to ‘welcome’ baby when first home.

(Ref: *AIFS https://aifs.gov.au/publications/family-matters/issue-37/achieving-family-supportive-workplace-and-community )

Dads want information
We live in an information age – why wouldn’t you want more information about becoming a dad? For us the perinatal period is key to welcoming your new baby.

Support is needed for both new dads and new mums – thank you for visiting ‘How is Dad Going’ – please let us know if there is anything you think is key for dads that is missing from the site.

Perinatal mental health and self care for Dads – Find out more