Tips for Brand New Dads

posted: 11/16/17
by: Katie Morton
Shot of an adorable baby girl sleeping on her father’s chest at home


Few things rock a guy's world like welcoming a new baby to the family. Becoming a first-time parent is an unequivocally blessed experience. You will fiercely love and vow to protect this tiny person with your whole heart. There's no doubt that becoming a new dad is full of joy, but the joy will be tempered with sleepless nights, new parent uncertainty, and a greater level of responsibility.

What can you do to prepare for your new baby so that you're the best dad you can be? We share 6 tips to help you crush your new dad role.

1. Help Mom With the Diaper Duty

Good news dads, one of the best ways to bond with your new baby is one of the easiest: Change that baby's diaper! Want an even more compelling reason to help with diaper duty? Research indicates that dads who helped out with diapering their babies had stronger marriages.

If you've never changed a diaper before, that's OK--you're not alone. Not all of this baby care stuff is intuitive. Taking a basics baby care class at your local college or community center will teach you valuable skills and boost your baby-care confidence.

2. Be Available to Your Partner

Some workplaces now recognize that dads are entitled to paternity leave after a new baby is born. If your employer doesn't formally recognize paternity leave, see if you can make arrangements to take vacation. The first few weeks of a baby's life are fleeting. They change and develop so much in a short time, and you don't want to miss it.

Plus, labor and delivery can be really rough on new moms. Whether your partner had a C-section or traditional delivery, psychical recovery can take up to eight weeks. No doubt, mom will appreciate the extra hands and emotional support at home during this early postpartum time.

3. Allow Yourself Time for a Break

Having a new baby is demanding. The hours are long, your new boss isn't the best communicator, and your co-worker (mom) can be cranky as she recovers from delivery. Know when you need to take a deep breath and recharge. It's OK to say you need to reset and take a deep breath. Go for a drive, take a run, or catch a movie.

A stressed, tired parent is not at their best. It's important to take time for yourself so you can attend to your baby's needs with love and patience. Knowing when you need to reset is not selfish--in fact, doing so will ultimately make you a better, more patient parent.

4. Head Outside

Fresh air and nature is good for the body and the mind. Make use of the fancy new stroller you got at the baby shower and head outside for a walk. Brand new babies like the visual and auditory stimulation of new environments. Bonus: The exposure to sunlight may even help them (and you) sleep better at night!

5. Listen to Your Instincts

If you think something is "off" with your baby, you're probably right. After all, you know your baby well. If you're not sure if something is amiss, don't be afraid to check in with your baby's pediatrician. They're available to help you head off problems with your baby and keep them healthy.

6. Prep For Emergencies

You'll be surprised to learn that your tiny human is surprisingly durable for their size. Many new dads may worry about being left alone with the new baby, in case something goes wrong. A basic first aid and infant CPR course is a must for all new parents--and will help you feel prepared for emergencies.

Becoming a new dad is a life-changing, amazing experience. With our tips, you will be prepared and ready to welcome your new baby home with confidence. Congratulations from the TLC family to yours on that adorable new addition!