In consultation with a wide range of Australian experts, the Psychology Department of the Australian Catholic University, has produced a guide, Supporting your partner when you have a baby. It is addressed to both parents and is about how can each partner support the other. The idea of a father being in need of support from the mother is rarely explored in maternal health literature, but this guidance addresses this issue as part of a systemic approach to family functioning.
The guide covers a range of issues and provides a useful checklist of the family issues that Australian experts have concluded are important:
- Open communication about hopes and fears and reflections on one’s own childhood experiences.
- Impact of childbirth on sex and other ways of sustaining physical intimacy.
- Showing affection, acceptance and appreciation.
- Managing conflict well and the art of listening.
- Keeping healthy – diet, sleep, exercise, breastfeeding.
- Getting help from wider support networks, family and friends.
- Detecting and responding to depression in your partner.
Pilkington PD, Milne LC, Cairns K & Whelan T (2015), Supporting your partner when you have a baby, Brochure from the Australian Catholic University
Photo: cheriejoyful. Creative Commons.