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Beowulfthehunter

I helped biologically print a mini...musings and calls for advice

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This past September my wife and I welcomed a beautiful amazing daughter into the world. Getting her made and born could fill the script of a lifetime movie and is the stuff of nightmares. The one take away is she is healthy.

 

I am a stay at home dad in a wierd situation in that the wife works from home so she sees our daughter more than most working parents. I supplement the income with painting and investment interest. We are not poor, but not exactly rich either. I hate that I am not the breadwinner, but from this situation it turns out I am not bad at being a dad. I get to spend the whole day playing with my daughter, but she is constantly attached to me, it is emotionally draining and those two hours she sleeps during the day ( in half an hour increments). I am exhausted jelly. It annoys my wife I am not doing  housework. That stuff does not even enter my mind. Does it make sense that I am physically drained from being responsible for this tiny human.

 

Because my daughter spends so much time with me ( I put her to bed at 9pm and and pass her off to her mom at 2:30m) I am able to calm her down more proficient than her mom. My wife feels like a failure because our daughter responds better to me (no post partum). She claims I get to have all the fun with our daughter. Being constantly stressed that you might drop your daughter, or that you might hold her wrong, or worried that any number of accidental things you could do could affect her for life is NOT fun.

 

Thanks for listening to my ramblings and for any future congratulations.

I am already stockpiling minis for her and dice.

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First of all, congratulations!! I gave birth to my baby this last may, so I acutely know what you’re going through. 
 

Babies adapt to change very quickly, so whatever you do, it will only take a short time for her to adjust. In regards to your wife feeling like a failure, the only thing that will change how your daughter responds to her is time. If your wife takes more of the responsibilities of taking care of her and soothing her and so forth, your daughter will start responding more to her. 
 

As to you feeling emotionally exhausted, your wife should take on some of the baby work. No one, mother or father, can take care of a baby 24/7 for months on end without burning out. You need you time. And the both of you need couple time. Your baby is getting to the age where she can be left with someone else for a few hours. Even if all you do is binge watch a show or take a nap, it’s important time for your batteries to recharge. 
 

This is a team challenge and equal work by both parties is required. And infants under a year old are far more work than even a full time job. Things are just gonna get more crazy as your girl gets older and more independent.
 

 Look at that face. It’s the face is Mischief.

 

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First off, congratulations.  

 

I try not to offer advice as each couple and child are different, but here is how we managed.  Take from it what you will.  

 

Mine are now 8 and 10 but I did NOT adapt to parenthood as gracefully as I would have liked.  In Canada we get a full year off work (split between the parents as you see fit) and my wife took the bulk of it with me working a compressed work-week so I'd get every other Friday off.  Note that both kids were bottle-fed.  I cannot begin to describe how much my wife looked forward to those Fridays.  Just knowing that she could sleep the morning away if required, run errands...  We booked the baby's medical visits for those days so we could both be there, made her life much easier.  We would also go see movies together with baby in tow, go out for lunch... do couple stuff as baby permitted. 

 

On a work day, I would tag in a little after I got home from work for a couple hours.  I got to see my son for a bit and she could grab a nap, go for a walk, something...  Then I was on call until 11pm (we changed this to 10pm with the second kid) and she did the night shift.  We tried alternating who got up during the night but once you're so sleep deprived you're not sure if it's your turn anymore and both of us were waking up each time.  We also each have (yes, we still do) a morning on the weekend when we can sleep in.  I get Saturdays, she gets Sundays.  Again, having that time when you're not on the clock is a wonderful feeling.  

 

With our second, we left the older one in daycare (in-home daycare just down the street), which we were lucky that we could afford, which helped juggling the new reality with a second bundle of joy.  Every so often though we would send the baby to the daycare and keep the older kid home so he'd get some dedicated mommy or daddy time as well.  This wasn't pre-planned and isn't something everyone can do, but care provider loved having the baby for a few hours and I like to think it helped with the "younger sibling getting all the attention" problem that some older siblings deal with.  

 

Now, this parental balance and "bliss" came slowly with many, many adjustments as the little ones evolved.  It all came down to communication and focus on ensuring the needs of everyone were met as well as possible.  

 

This coming summer I'm taking 2 months off work to keep the kids home instead of sending them to a variety of camps and such and am very much looking forward to it.  

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It's rough. There's no other way to slice it. You have to find your own normal, and then you adapt it to your baby. Mine is 2 (two!!! How did that happen?!), and there are days that I still have to remember to breathe.

I agree with redambrosia, you have to find a happy medium with both of you helping each other. It can't get better if you can't lean on each other.


Just remember that it's all a season. And you will miss some of it, and be thankful some of it is over. Just smile, love them both, and y'all can make it through!

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