how he's processing

Discover How He’s Processing the Pregnancy

We need to talk about how he’s processing the pregnancy.

I don’t know how he feels about the fact that I’m pregnant.

My partner and I have been on edge since I told him I was pregnant. How do I talk to him?

Pregnancy can be a rollercoaster of emotions for the baby’s father as well as the expecting mother. When it comes to understanding what he’s thinking, his concerns, and how he imagines his role, it’s important to navigate this conversation with empathy and mutual support. This article aims to guide you through the process of discovering and understanding your partner’s feelings about the pregnancy.

Starting the Conversation

Creating an environment in which honest communication is encouraged is the first step to understanding how he’s feeling about the pregnancy. Honesty is not always comfortable, so it’s wise to intentionally choose a comfortable and private setting to have this conversation. Ensure there are no distractions.

If he seems unreceptive in the conversation, shuts off, or offers nothing but taciturn responses, it might indicate he’s not ready to talk. In order to get things going, you could break the ice by asking open-ended questions like:

  1. What do you think is a good plan for custody?
  2. What do you think is a good plan for marriage or co-parenting?
  3. Is there anything you think we need to do?
  4. Have you taken any of the parenting classes yet?
  5. Has the pregnancy been on your mind?
  6. What kind of a dad would you like to be?
  7. What are your thoughts on becoming a father?

It’s crucial to acknowledge that men may experience a wide range of emotions regarding pregnancy. He might feel joy, fear, anxiety, or even confusion. Recognize that how he’s processing those array of emotions is valid and normal. It’s important to give him space to express himself without judgment and identify the dynamics of your situation with him. Also, let him know that at Birth Choice, we offer resources specifically for men.

An Active Listening Technique

One way to show him you’re listening is a conversational technique that involves repeating what he says back to him. For example, if he tells you, “It’s like, I just got offered a job in New York, but apartments are so expensive and now this is happening,” you could say to him, “So you’re worried about finding an apartment in New York that would accommodate the baby?” This lets him know that you’re paying attention. Also, because you phrased it in the form of a question, he will have the opportunity to clarify what he means. It might sound silly, but it’s worth a try if it helps you start the conversation about how he’s processing the pregnancy, right? You can also read up on advanced active listening techniques before going into the conversation.

The Importance of Patience

Remember that it might take time for him to fully process his feelings about the pregnancy. Be patient and give him the time he needs. Avoid pressuring him for immediate responses or decisions.

One conversation might evolve into another. Use this opportunity to start planning for the future. Discuss how you both envision the coming months, the birth, and the early stages of parenting. Planning together can help alleviate anxieties and build a stronger bond, even if you’re choosing to co-parent.

Also, take time to celebrate this new chapter in your lives. Embrace the journey of parenthood together, focusing on the joy and love that brought you to this point.

Seek Support When Needed

If you find it challenging to navigate this conversation or if there are persistent concerns, don’t hesitate to seek support. This could be in the form of counseling, joining a support group for expectant parents, reaching out to your local pregnancy center, or simply talking to friends or family who have gone through a similar experience.

At Birth Choice, we are here to help men process their partner’s pregnancies and what this means for them. Our Men’s Mentors at our Jackson and Trenton offices are here to encourage men in this journey. Our Fatherhood programs at these offices are also a great resource for men who want to prepare for fatherhood and becoming men of integrity. Book an appointment to learn more about how to handle stress during this transformative time.