Bonding with Dad
Nothing and nobody can really prepare you for the realities of caring for a newborn baby, and this is never more so than when it comes to bath time! Our hands free towel was invented after watching two very loving and very dedicated dads struggle with the practicalities of it all. Where to put the towels? How to hold baby without dropping said towel? How to stop the inevitable shrieks as cold air hits baby’s skin on the transfer from tub to towel… and yet those dads were determined not to give in. They knew, as we do, that bath time was one of the best opportunities for them to bond with their babies, and they weren’t going to pass it up for anything. This weekend we’re celebrating Father’s Day and in honour of that we’ve put together some really simple tips for bonding time with dad. And don’t miss our special discount on the hands free towel at the end!
Why is bonding with dad so important?
Many studies have taken place to find out exactly why bonding with dad is so important, and experts now agree that many there are many benefits to establishing a strong relationship between father and child. The studies found that babies whose fathers regularly played with them had significant physical and emotional development boosts; fathers themselves experience less stress and more confidence, and some studies have found that this relaxed approach continues into later life too. Men who experienced a good relationship with their father are reportedly more able to deal with stress, and children who enjoy a strong relationship with dad show signs of performing better at school- being more able to form relationships with peers, and are more likely to possess good social skills as they grow up.
Top tips for bonding time with dad
Throughout pregnancy it can be difficult for dad to bond with baby because he isn’t experiencing it first hand. That doesn’t mean bonding can’t start from the very beginning though! Here are
our top five tips for dads who want to bond:
- Talk to the bump! Lots of dads report that they spent time during the pregnancy talking to their partner’s bump, reading stories and even singing. If this isn’t for you, then try simply holding a hand on the bump (with permission, of course!) to feel the kicks and rolls as baby gets bigger and stronger. This can be an amazing way to start those special connections before baby arrives.
- Skin to skin. Spending quality time with your baby after birth is an excellent way to bond, and skin to skin has so many benefits for both parent and child. It may be mum isn’t able to have skin to skin contact straight away, but that doesn’t mean that dad can’t. Studies have found that baby’s temperature and heart rates regulates a lot faster when they experience skin to skin with a parent, and dads who have done it are under no illusion that it’s one of the best feelings in the world. And as baby gets older, skin to skin cuddles can become a regular part of your routine, providing warmth, comfort and peace to you both.
- Enjoy bath time. It doesn’t have to be stressful! If your baby is breastfed or mum is in charge of most of the feeds, it can be easy for dads to feel a little on the sidelines when it comes to caring for baby, especially in the early days. But bath time is one time that dad can play a really active role in, and a part of the day that so many families look forward to. Make sure that you
- have everything you need for a calm and peaceful bath time (read this post for more tips) and don’t forget your hands free towel! Take the stress away and enjoy this precious time at the end of a busy day- what could be more perfect?
- Play! Babies and children learn through play and it’s so important for them to experience that with dad too. It can be hard when the stresses of real life get in the way, and the office hours feel too long, but try to set aside some time each day to play with your baby so that you can develop your bond even though you’re apart for most of the day. And make the most of the weekend too! A dad’s style of play can be vastly different to mum’s and that’s what makes it so fantastic and such a great way to instil confidence and comfort in your relationship.
- Read stories. Studies have found that babies and children who are read to are more able to develop good communication and language skills, and this is something that dad can definitely get on board with. Apparently dads ask more challenging questions when they read to their children, prompting more imaginative discussions and enriching the experience as a whole. Whether this is true or not is yet to be confirmed, but there can be no denying that reading the bedtime story is a fun and special way for dad to end the day.