Why I Want My Husband To Read The Baby Books

If we can't share the weight gain and morning sickness, we can at least share the burden of baby literature

The stack of baby books on my bedside table has grown immensely. This does not include the ones I have downloaded on my iPad. It seems that there are books on everything (breastfeeding, the first year, sleeping, skin-to-skin) with hoards of information. I frequently feel overwhelmed by all of these issues and their often-conflicting opinions.

The best part of being pregnant and raising children is sharing it with someone else. In my case, this person is my husband. However, when I am trawling through baby books with a highlighter and he is checking Blue Jays scores on Sports Net, I can get annoyed…which as a hormonal pregnant woman, means I might cry.

Please don’t get me wrong. I have a very loving and supportive husband who thinks the world of me and cannot wait to be a father. My concern stems mainly from an experienced lack of male intuition. Some people have partners who know exactly what to do, and some are eager to read the baby books and know more. Every couple’s experience is different.

Here are the two main reasons why I want my husband to read the baby books.

Pregnancy Can Feel Lonely

Although pregnancy is a joy, it can feel lonely. The first three months were tough on my body, zapping my energy and making me a prisoner of the toilet. Hormones were darting haphazardly and it seemed as if my body was no longer my own.

My partner may say, “You look great!” but all I can see is my belly growing, my body changing, and my face getting rounder. The baby’s kicks, rolls, and hiccups are indeed the most inexplicable, amazing feeling in the entire world. But this magic isn’t something that I can physically share.

Regardless of how much this baby is the perfect amalgamation of me, my partner, and all our love, pregnancy is a very personal experience. He will never completely understand being pregnant, but reading the baby books will help him slightly empathize with what is going on. He will know why I act the way I do, can’t stand the foods that I used to love, and why my lower back hurts. Hubby reading the baby books allows him to follow along throughout my pregnancy without requiring a play-by-play narration from me.

Being Ready For The First Few Days

After giving birth and coming home to an entirely altered existence, I’m looking forward to having some meaningful help from my husband. I want him to have an idea of why the baby moves in such a way or why his diaper is full of black liquid. I want him to tell me how to properly look after his umbilical stump and help me decipher his cries instead of me bumbling through alone.

After nine long months, the trauma of labour and attempting to master breastfeeding, I want to know that my husband is there figuring it out alongside me… with a clearer head. If he has read the baby books, he will be able to help steer baby and me through the first few days of coming home. Together with my reading, mother’s intuition and my husband’s newfound knowledge, we will make it.

Undoubtedly there are things only a mother can know, but having a partner who is as informed as possible gives me strength in an unknown, overwhelming and life changing event.

I would like to finish this article by letting you know that my husband is now reading the baby books. Apparently, he has been reading summaries of each trimester all along. Unprompted, he has been taking a baby book on baby’s first year and reading while on the treadmill at the gym. When he spouted a few facts that I undoubtedly remembered from that baby book, I gasped.

“You’re reading the baby books!” I cried. 

“Of course,” he winked. “I just want to be able to call you out on baby things when you get them wrong.” 

I have never loved him more. 

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