Emotional support for your pregnant partner.
Don’t be surprised if your partner’s mood becomes a little unpredictable when pregnancy lands. Mood swings during pregnancy are very common, especially during the first trimester, and are usually fuelled by…
- A surge in extra hormones in mum’s body
- The pressures that come with carrying a child, as well as impending motherhood.
You can find out more about the causes here.
You, yourself may also be feeling a little volatile as you come to terms with the fact that you’ll soon be a parent, but even so, try not to become too angry or frustrated with your partner as they’re likely feeling the same as you with the added bonus of a hormonal overload. Bottling up your emotions isn’t the answer, so you should attempt to communicate your thoughts and feelings calmly. Try and be reassuring, supportive and understanding, after all, you’re her partner, her emotional support with which to lean on, even if inside you feel far from up to the task. Being a good listener is also important, not least as you should be alert for any impending signs of poor mental health in your partner (or yourself for that matter).
Signs to watch out for are…
- Changes in sleeping pattern
- Lacking in energy
- Feeling down for no reason
- Feeling worthless
- Changes in appetite (no interest or eating more than usual)
- Crying for no reason
- Lack of interest in activities they normally enjoy
Tips for providing emotional support
- Health is of particular importance during pregnancy, not only for the baby’s development, but also for mum’s physical and mental state. Try to encourage your partner to eat a nutritious diet, exercise, and stay away from substances harmful to the baby such as alcohol and cigarettes. If you are a smoker, do not smoke anywhere near your partner to prevent passive smoking.
- Communication is key. Listen to your partner, reassure, be supportive, be understanding.
- Educate yourself about what to expect with pregnancy and childbirth. This will not only help you to understand what’s going on, but it’ll be reassuring for your partner to know she’s in safe hands with someone who can share the load and take a burden off her shoulders. Attending all of her medical visits and sharing childbirth classes will help in this respect.
- Look after yourself, try to stay fit and healthy and talk to your partner, friends or professionals if you’re struggling. She needs you and you’re going to be great.
Remember, mood swings are part and parcel of pregnancy and life changes and they’ll soon pass.
Father of 2
Living in Budapest with his wife and two children, Gareth is a freelance writer, creative strategist, film maker and author of the ‘The Budanest’, a book about his experience of fatherhood. He gives us insight into parenthood from a partner's perspective: all views and opinions given are his own, taken from his personal experiences.