Are some of you expecting to be new dads soon, KALMers?
For a man, being a Dad is a big deal that requires proper consideration. Just as a marriage, having a child will not only add great happiness but also great responsibility. There will be a lot of changes that a new dad must face, that may create fear in the hearts of new dads. Can I provide for my wife and child? Can I be a good father for my child? And other questions that create doubt in their ability to be a father.
Even though it might not appear outwardly – since men tend to keep their emotions – dads-to-be are often afraid, even after the baby comes. The degree of fear that a new dad might experience depends on several factors. To know more about the fear that new dads experience, we talked to one of our Kalmselors, Wenny Aidina, M. Psi..
What Are New Dads Usually Afraid Of?
There are a lot of things. For example the feeling of being not ready to accept the big responsibility of being a father, either in terms of material and mental. It could be that the new father is afraid of various changes that happen. Maybe it is less time for intimacy with the wife or the daily routine of babycare that takes a lot of time. His past could also become the reason of his fear, such as negative past experiences with his own father when he was young so that he worries the same thing will be experienced by his son.
What Are the Causes of These Fears?
Other than childhood experiences mentioned above, the fear of new fathers could be caused by:
- Financial burden
- Rearing expectation that is different from reality
- History of anxiety and/or depression disorder, so that there are negative thoughts haunting the new Dads
- Negative experiences during or right after the pregnancy, such as complications after birth
- Not having a support system or a place to share his worry or the uncomfortable situation he is experiencing.
- Unpreparedness in having a child. For example was not planning to have a child or failure to start adapting since pregnancy period.
- Hormonal changes because his activity will follow the baby’s sleep cycle (when there is a sharing of of babycare and household care). This cycle shift can affect the way the body works and can even create hormonal changes to the Dad. When Dads are not well prepared, trained, or accustomed to then this changes can feel very uncomfortable for them.
Does the Age of the Father Has Any Influence?
Yes. Every age has different development stages. When the new father is still a teenager, then basically he is still in the stage of self discovery. So when someone is still in this stage becomes a father, for sure the challenge is tremendous and actually not recommended because at this stage he is supposed to just focus on himself. Not taking care of other people or building a commitment.
In adulthood, age is no longer directly related to one’s preparedness to be a father. Basically, when a couple (a father and a mother) from the beginning of their marriage already have effective communication, healthy relationships, and good planning to go through their marriage and parenting life, then the possibility of the new father to experience fear/ anxiety will be low.
So that new Dads can tackle those fears, or prevent them from becoming a reality, wait for our next article, KALMers!
Writer: Menur Adhiyasasti