Anyone elses husband/partner just not that... 'connected' yet? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 15 Old 12-15-2005, 03:01 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Hi All,

Lately I've been bummed out that DH hasn't been really 'into' the baby yet. I thought that once I began to really show he would touch it, talk with it, want to feel the kicks, etc. but it doesn't seem to be happening!

DH has never been a touchy feely kinda guy, so I'm really trying not to judge him or be upset, since it's just the way he is... but I see on TV pregnant couples and the guy is lovin on the belly, or telling his wife she looks beautiful pregnant and it makes me sad!

DH is excited about the baby. He is also very nervous, since his dad was crap. He's never spent much time around babies. He does show concern for me and baby all the time- making sure I don't lift heavy things, wanting me to be comfortable at night, etc. and he does give me hugs and kisses... he just ignores the big belly growing out in front of me! I seriously think he's felt it maybe 8 times... all times when I've prompted him to feel the baby kick or try to hear the heartbeat, etc.

We just started meeting with our HBMW, and I think that will help. Before we went to a fake midwife (medwife... in a hospital) and the meetings were very breif, 5 minutes, etc. I think that having the wonderful new midwife preparing us will make some reality sink in. We have conversations about CD, slings, circ, etc. and he's very open about that stuff... just the belly that is getting ignored.

So I'm wondering if anyone else has husband/partners that haven't been that into the belly? I'm thinking that it might get better as I get bigger, so I've been trying not to bring it up as a big "issue" for discussion since I also know that I can be over sensitive to things.
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#2 of 15 Old 12-15-2005, 03:35 PM
 
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I could have written this!! Same thing...can't interest him all that much in feeling or looking or shopping for the baby. He shows concern but I don't think he gets it. Perhaps an actual visible screaming pooper with his name might make a difference come March.
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#3 of 15 Old 12-15-2005, 03:59 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Wheew! I'm glad to hear someone else is in the same boat. It's not that he's a bad guy, or won't be a great dad... he's just not belly oriented right now and I wish he was.

Thanks for reassurance that I'm not the only belly-attention-deprived one around here!
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#4 of 15 Old 12-15-2005, 04:40 PM
 
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DH is the same way - and this is our third. He's great with the babies once they're born, and I can tell he's excited to have a girl this time, but with each pregnancy he was more the attitude of "you've done this before so it must be easy" , doesn't care to come to my appointments or even the ultrasound, and only touches the belly when I ask him to. But on the upside he does say I look sexy pregnant (which I can't comprehend but it's nice to hear lol) and definately wants to be at the birth. I think fathers always have a different connection to the babies than the mother which comes out more when the baby can actually "do stuff" with daddy. And maybe it has more to do with my mood changes than the situation changing, some days I feel like I'm going through this alone and resent it and others I'm really grateful that my children have a father who cares to spend time with them, which a lot of women nowadays can't say.

Alicia + James = Gabriel (9), Uriah (7), Ayla (5), Noah (3), Azriel (1), and due Oct. 2011

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#5 of 15 Old 12-15-2005, 05:37 PM
 
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Dh isn't much of a belly-rubber, either. But, he is a fabulous dad. He really jumped in with both feet as soon as ds was born. I was really impressed. I thought he would hang back more and I would have to coax him into taking on a more hands-on roll. Nope. He even took ds out shopping for an hour when he was 2 weeks old so I could rest!

Remember, men and women show emotion and resond to things differently. Your dh is obviously interested in the baby, so I wouldn't worry that he isn't touchy-feely. I also wouldn't bring it up. I don't think I realized how very anxious dh was about becoming a father until after the fact. So, as long as you are feeling loved and getting support, all is good.

Congrats on switching to a HBMW. I love our mw, and dh is getting more comfortable with the realization that we really are doing this at home!

Melissa

Melissa crochetsmilie.gif, wife to Tom geek.gif, mom to The Baron modifiedartist.gif, the Bean superhero.gif, Little Bear diaper.gif, and Baby Beaver babyboy.gif
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#6 of 15 Old 12-15-2005, 06:25 PM
 
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My husband has told me that he didn't really feel connected to our DS1 until he was about a month old. He just had trouble conceptualizing what it would be like and what his feelings would be like. He is a fantastic dad and is totally besotted with our boy now.

With this pregnancy, as soon as I told him we had a positive, he said, "Don't worry about me if I'm not as excited as you for awhile." He's a little more into this pregnancy, just because he knows what to expect, but he's not feeling my belly up all the time or anything . It's funny, because this time I think we're about on the same level excitement-wise. I'm much more laid-back about this pregnancy and not nearly as into every little kick and body-change as I was with DS1. I just want my baby to be here already!!
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#7 of 15 Old 12-15-2005, 06:39 PM
 
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I'm sorry your DH is not responding the way you want him to! I imagine he might be nervous and conflicted about his own feelings about parenting, and maybe that is preventing him from reaching out to the baby. Clearly he is taking good care of you.

You could ask him, "If you talked to the baby or said hello to it once a day, I would like that." Do you think he would do it if you clarified exactly what you want him to do? He might just need some coaching.
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#8 of 15 Old 12-17-2005, 02:46 AM
 
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My dh didn't really fawn over my belly last time, and he isn't this time, either. He only feels for kicks when I suggest it, mostly because I'm the one that knows when the baby is active and when he's most likely to be able to feel something. I tell him when the baby's active, and he's always interested and responds with talking about the baby, but he's not all about feeling my belly or talking about my belly....

I don't know, though...I feel that in every other way, he's SO involved. I guess the lack of "belly-specific" attention hasn't been on my radar. I'm not that concerned, though. He's excited to be a dad, he's loving and protective toward me, and he's been a great dad to our boys. I think guys don't obsess about bellies as much as we do...afterall, we're the ones growing the bellies. For women, we feel everything happening in our belly, and that bump symbolizes so much more because it's a physical connection between our bodies and the baby. I can see how a guy wouldn't have that.

If it starts to really bother you, you should bring it up to your dh. Hiding feelings is never healthy. If you do bring it up, though, just be aware that it might never have occurred to him that your belly is such a source of meaning to you. He might just need to hear you talk more about what _you_ feel about your belly...and maybe ask him to do certain things to bond with you and the belly It's always funny to ask guys to talk to the baby and snuggle the belly, but hey--it's worth a shot. Coaching, like the previous poster said, can be good. Especially for a first-time daddy.

RedOak ~ Momma to DS (8) , DS (4) , DD (3) , & DD 9/10 ~
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#9 of 15 Old 12-17-2005, 03:53 PM
 
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my H was totally like that with our first. he just didn't seem excited as much as me, etc. that changed the minute our DD was born. he is an amazing dad. i think it is harder for the first time dad because they don't have something growing inside them and of course they have the same first time parent fears we all have.

my DH was in love the minute he saw her and has been ever since. they are very connected and i always have to share that because i remember being worried when i was pregnant.
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#10 of 15 Old 12-17-2005, 04:00 PM
 
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My hubby didnt touch the belly at all, but when she was born oh my god did he flip right around. I loved it.
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#11 of 15 Old 12-17-2005, 04:04 PM
 
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My husband has never been interested in my belly. Or much in the pregnancy for that matter. But it doesn't really bother me -- I just figure, he doesn't have the hormones running through his body, you know? So it's not personal. It's just that he's not the one who's pregnant, so he's not feeling it. And I have to admit I never got excited about pregnant women's bodies either before I had children -- and now I do only because it reminds me of when I was pregnant. I think this is why it is so important for women not to have to rely on the their husbands for this part of it -- they need other women around them who are and who have gone through it.

He *is* a fantastic involved father, though, and has been since birth. I think it really helped to have him right there at the birth (especially when it was just the two of us) and for him to take off as much time as possible after the birth of the baby, and for us to have a babymoon (just us for quite a while after the birth) so he had a lot of time to get to know the baby.
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#12 of 15 Old 12-22-2005, 01:30 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks, everyone for sharing your experiences! I didn't say anything, but I feel really great about where we are now, so it just hasn't been a problem for me lately. It seems that right around the day I posted, the baby started getting really active and moving around so much it looked like an earthquake in my belly! DH was fascinated, and has since paid a bit more attention to the belly.

I have learned that everyone has different "meters" by which to guage affection, and this is just another time when I really have to love th little things DH is doing. He says goodnight to the "little peanut" sometimes, with a little pat on my belly. He woke up the other morning and put his hand on it to try to feel it move.

But more importantly, he happily comes to the meetings with our midwife. Isn't complaining about going to a workshop on yoga and massage during birth, or the Birthing From Within class even though he knows there will be "birth art"

So, I'm glad I didn't say anything. Cause another thing I know about my DH... he likes to do things because he thought of it, or he wants to. If he feels he's obligated to do something, he gets grouchy about it. I don't want him to feel like he has to love my belly all the time! Knowing that he is doing what he instinctively wants to makes those times nicer!
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#13 of 15 Old 12-22-2005, 02:50 PM
 
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I'm going to see if the docs will agree to let dh catch the baby at delivery time. I think that would be so awesome of an experience for him, and help him to bond in a very special way.

Carrin Mama to Sawyer 4/06 and TTC #2 I am a WAHM!
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#14 of 15 Old 12-22-2005, 03:54 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I would love it if DH would catch the baby... but I doubt he will! We are having a home birth/water birth, so it's "allowable" but I think DH is just a little grossed out about the sliminess of it all. Who knows, in the heat of the moment he may change his mind... but I'm not counting on it!
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#15 of 15 Old 12-22-2005, 05:01 PM
 
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I think the biggest difference is that we have the baby attached to us. We don't have the option of feeling the baby or not. No matter what 24 hours a day/7 days a week we have a belly to remind us of the upcoming miracle. Our husbands can go to work and sleep well without a thought about the squirming little one. While we love the kicks (most of the time) and constant reminders that our little bundle is growing our husbands just don't have those things to deal with. I don't think that they intentially forget to kiss the belly bye or tell it goodnight. I know my husband said 100s of times after my son was born that he just couldn't believe that he had lived inside of me the whole time. That it just never felt real to him until he saw it all.
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