The arrival of a baby is undoubtedly cause for joy, but for some parents, as surprising as it may seem, it is cause for discomfort. It is possible that a father is jealous of his baby? What can we do to prevent it? Individual and couple work are the key.
I feel jealous of my baby
Yes, it sounds strange and it may seem unheard of, but the reality is that men come to the office telling this. Many find it difficult, in fact, because in addition to jealousy they feel shame and have difficulty recognizing what really worries them.
Are they jealous or are they something else? It is quite possible that the feeling with which these men are best recognized is that of jealousy, but recent studies on male postpartum depression indicate that this feeling may be one of the faces, one of the symptoms, that shows this type of depression in The case of men. In any case it is not yet known what it was before, if the egg or the chicken ... In fact, much of this stage is still to be elucidated in the case of parents.
What can we do to prevent these jealousy?
Actually the recipe is similar to what is prescribed to try to avoid postpartum depression and to ensure a good adjustment to this new stage, so I tell you by addressing both, if you think so.
Put your desires, needs, fears on the table ... in order to become parents. Throwing into such a decision without being clear can leave fringes that will give us problems later.
Determine well what the search is going to be, what each one expects from it, how it would react in case it took… or if it didn't take anything to get that positive.
Adjust expectations. In addition to love and joy, caring for a baby leaves little “free” time, it requires a lot of attention, and your relationship will obviously change.
Define the roles and tasks of each one for the arrival of the baby. The more closed we leave the subject the less surprises we will find. Being prepared is key to addressing this change healthily.
Dating It is not about “Take advantage while we can” because it’s not that we’re going to date again… but it’s true that for a while, especially at the beginning, things will get a little complicated in this regard. Some people take a trip before giving birth, they call it "Babymoon", a kind of pre-paternity wedding trip.
After the arrival of the baby
Communication, communication and more communication. If we feel tired, overcome, if we need help ... we must say, let's be male or female.
Let's put our thoughts in order to put our feelings in order. One thing that psychologists know is that it is what we think that modulates how we feel, so one of the best things we can do to avoid being jealous, to avoid discomfort, is to locate, rationalize and test those thoughts that They are leading us to feel that way.
Let's reflect: why do I feel bad? What do I fear will happen? What do I think when I feel this bad? If we are clear about this we can relocate it, restructure it to make us feel good and help everything go. Understanding that things have changed, but are not necessarily worse, is an important part of our work in this regard.
Let's look for our spaces. It is something that I never tire of saying: both individually and as a couple it is very important that we find moments for ourselves, to rest but also to display those other roles that we also have (that of man, woman, couple, friend, daughter, worker ...)
Specifically for daddies ...
The best, what will help you to banish those jealousies, besides strengthening the couple with good communication and space for us, as I said, is spending time with your child.
Establish, strengthen and seal ties with the baby It is the best way not to see him as an "opponent", but as part of oneself, whom we want to take care of, a small being who needs us just as he needs his mother.
Find your moments with your baby, some in which the mother is also, but others in which you are alone, in which it is you who has to attend to him, observe him ... You will learn from each other, and very powerful bonds will be forged .
Being well is essential, for you, for your partner and especially for your baby. Studies, such as the one developed by Michael Weitzman and published by the American Academy of Pediatrics, show that parents' depression (specifically) puts their children's future mental health at risk.
I know that I am very heavy with this and that I always say it, but if you feel bad, if something is not going well, go to a professional, surely it can help you and, without a doubt, it is worth it.
In Babies and more: The 11 things that irritate men the most when we are parents