It’s Father’s Day this month and I think that’s a great time to talk about mental health support for dads. One of the things I love about working with dads is seeing how they light up when supporting their partners and caring for their babies. But, like all of us, dads also need to feel well in themselves before they can help anyone else.
You can read more about the challenges that dads and partners struggling with their mental health might face and some of the support available in this month’s post.
As I started thinking about this month’s newsletter, I asked my husband about what helped him stay well when our son was born and during early parenting. He told me that it was the preparation he did during my pregnancy that made the biggest difference. He found that having more information was helpful and he learned techniques that helped him cope during that uncertain time when everything was new.
If you’re a dad to be (or know one) and want to support yourself in this way, I’m offering an online Preparing for Parenting workshop on 10 and 11 June. This month’s offer is also on the Preparing for Parenting support package for parents who want more support to enjoy and feel confident about early parenting. Either of these options are great for you if you’re feeling nervous or worried about what happens after your baby’s arrival.
To get you started, I’ve also included a few tips on how to prepare for becoming a parent. These can be relevant even if you have older children as each baby is different.
Upcoming Workshop – Preparing for Parenting
Do you want to feel calm about your baby’s arrival and trust that you will be able to cope with having a newborn?
My brand new online Preparing for Parenting workshop is running on Saturday 10 and Sunday 11 June. This workshop will help you focus on what will support you to have the best experience possible after your baby arrives. We will focus on helping you feel relaxed and confident about what comes after their birth.
The workshop runs for 1 hour each morning at 10am (UK time) and is open to all parents to be. And it’s a bargain at £35 as it also includes two private 30 minute coaching support calls with me to help you get the most out of the workshop. AND you can bring your partner for FREE.
Spaces are limited so email me to book at firstname.lastname@example.org
June Offer – £50 Discount on the Preparing for Parenting Support Package
If you want a space to really build and boost your confidence as a new parent and have support during the process of becoming a parent, the Preparing for Parenting support package is for you.
You will be supported to tackle your fears about becoming a parent and shift your focus to why you’re going to be an awesome parent. You’ll also have an opportunity to work out a support plan that works for you and develop a toolkit to support you in the challenging moments.
And you get 2 baby friendly sessions after your little one arrives to provide you with confidence reinforcing support in those early days.
You can use this package to build on what you learn at the Preparing for Parenting workshop or as a stand alone package.
This package costs only £399 throughout June 2023 and is available for you to use on your own or with a partner.
You can email me at email@example.com to get started or book a free exploratory call with me to find out more.
Subscribers to the newsletter get an extra discount on offers. You can sign up for the monthly newsletter on the website homepage.
Why mental health support for dads (and partners) is important
This month’s post is about how having a baby is a big life change for dads and partners. I talk about why it’s important that they have access to mental health support when they need it. I also touch on why it can be hard for them to access support and some of the support available. You can read more here.
5 Ways You Can Prepare for Parenting
My husband said it best when he acknowledged that you can prepare all you want for having a baby. But you’ll never really know what it’s like to experience their birth or parenting until your baby actually gets here.
That’s why I’m sharing these tips that can help you prepare in a way that will help you cope regardless of what happens.
1. Know who your supporters are. Think about this carefully and make a list (mental or physical) of people who you know will support you in a way that feels helpful to you. These are people who will respect your boundaries, listen to you without judgement and help in practical ways (for example, by bringing food, cleaning, putting on a load of laundry or holding the baby while you shower). And be aware of who may want to help but whose presence may not feel helpful for you.
2. Get clear on your boundaries and learn to assert them. Keep in mind that your boundaries may also change depending on what you feel you need or don’t need once your baby is here. This could include when or for how long you want visitors, allowing other people to hold the baby or what type of help you want (or not). Learn to feel confident saying no. And be aware that we all have different boundaries and needs so you and your partner may need to negotiate these differences.
3. Get comfortable asking for help. This can be hard for many of us but learning to ask for the help that you need can be so so important as a new parent. You HAVE got this AND sometimes we all need some help. And your needs may be different from what you expected, they may change over time or they may be different from what people think you’ll find helpful. Clearly asking for what you need will mean that you’re able to get help that is right for you – as it will actually help you.
4. Start celebrating your successes. If you start to celebrate what you’re doing well and what’s going well now, this will be something you start to do automatically. And this can be very helpful when you are navigating some of the more challenging aspects of early parenting. I once celebrated our teamwork when managing an explosive nappy at 3am. And it made the situation feel much more positive.
5. Show yourself love and compassion. If you’re able to feel love and compassion for yourself, this will help you to have a much gentler experience. It’ll be easier to remind yourself that you’re getting to know your baby and learning what works when you’re not sure what to do. For example, if you’re feeling upset because they’re upset and you can’t work out how to help them. Self compassion will also help you be understanding towards yourself in moments when you feel tired or frustrated.
It can be challenging to be aware of the full range of support available, set boundaries and say no, ask for help, celebrate what you’re doing well or be loving and compassionate towards yourself. If you are struggling with any of these, you may find it helpful to have some extra support before your baby arrives.
I can help you work on any of these areas through my Preparing for Parenting workshop or support package. I’m running the workshop this month on 10 and 11 June. And you get £51 off the support package this month. More details are available for both of these services in this newsletter or you can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.