Take the mystery out of labour
Lots of dads say they never used the breathing techniques they learned with their partner at antenatal classes. But the classes are still a really good chance to take the mystery – and fear – out of labour and birth. You’ll feel much more relaxed knowing what’s going on, and what you can and can’t do to make the experience easier for your partner.
Get organised for your baby’s birth
The more you familiarise yourself with your partner’s birth plan and what’s involved in labour, the fewer birth worries you’ll have and the better prepared you’ll feel when the big day arrives.
Lots of first labours are very long, and providing emotional and physical support throughout can be exhausting. So make sure you wear comfortable clothes and shoes and take plenty of snacks and drinks with you to the hospital to keep both of your energy levels up. If you and your partner want a water birth, remember to take your trunks. And don’t forget some spare change for the coffee machine or payphone too! For more preparation tips, take a look at our article Preparing and planning for the birth.
Keep an open mind
We all have an idea in our head of what we’d like our baby’s birth to be like. But things rarely go according to plan. So, whatever happens on the day just keep an open mind and be there to support your partner.
Focus on your partner
Remember that throughout her labour you’ll be your partner’s most important support. Whatever she needs, whether it’s to rub her back, fetch a drink, speak to the midwife or just offer words of encouragement, she’ll be relying on you to supply it. On the big day, you’ll probably be so busy and centred on her, you’ll forget that you ever had any birth worries!