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Parenting: Dad's involvement with a new baby

Couples share in the care of their babies in different ways. In many families, fathers are very involved with their babies and find that, with a little experience, they are capable of caring for their infants. Research shows that fathers play a very special role in their children's lives.

Here are some ways to help this relationship along:

  • Mom needs to:

    • make sure she is not taking over,

    • notice Dad's caregiving, and let him know how great it is for baby, and

    • encourage Dad to have some time alone with baby.

  • Practice really helps fathers feel more relaxed and competent with their babies.

  • Dad can be involved with breastfeeding time by:

    • bringing baby to Mom,

    • changing baby,

    • cuddling in beside baby and Mom during a feeding,

    • burping baby, and

    • settling baby down after a feeding.

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