i know this is so common, as i felt that way with our first baby girl (who is now 2) was born, but my wonderful hubby says he is feeling that way with our newest girl who is a month old. our newest is quite a bit fussier than our first, and my hub says he really has zero interest at all in this new baby. he is still trying to help to take care of her but its more to lessen the burden on me than to bond with the baby. both of our girls were planned and i feel like we have a really good relationship, being able to talk about things like this, but it scares me to think he would not love his child. i would love to hear from other dads that felt the same and maybe things you did to help find a connection or when you did start feeling a connection?
I don't think it's uncommon for men (and some women) to not have a strong connection with a newborn. They have little interaction and are a lot of work! For my husband, he helped out with the new baby because he wanted to help me, but it seems like 3 months was the "kick in" point for his bonding. She gave him a big smile and giggle and now he's hooked. He doesn't think of her as just work anymore...Now she's his little angel!
For the most part I agree with Kare.bear. When my daughter was born, I knew I loved her, but may not have liked her too much at first. My wife was intent on breast feeding (which I agreed with) but the baby was not able to tolerate the breast milk. Even though the docs and the lactation consultant suggested that we go to formula, my wife felt she was failing our daughter by doing that. The baby was crying due to stomach upset, my wife was crying due to her perception of failure, and I was there trying to be supportive to both of them. She was more of another full time job than a joy at the beginning. After a while, when she got on a special formula and my wife began to realize that she wasn't a failure because of Eva's GI problems, things got better and I got the chance to bond with her instead of just take care of her. Remember, you had nine months to bond before she even got here. Men don't get that opportunity. Give him some ime to bond once things settle down for a bit, my guess is he will fall in love with her just like he did your other daughter.
I am glad this thread is here. We are expecting our first in January and that is one of my biggest fears. We have a total of 6 nephews and my husband has always had the mentaility of not being interested in babies until they are older, usually around 1 1/2 -2 years old. Obviously, I don't want this with our own child. I asked him the other day why he doesn't sing or talk to the baby eventhough she/he is still in my tummy or even rub my belly and he says he just doesn't feel it. And wants to do it in his own time. He has only felt the baby kick once maybe twice and he was kinda creeped out about it.
I think he will come around especially if we have a girl. He has always wanted "daddy's little girl" b/c he sees the relationship me and my sisters have with my dad.
Please have him pick up the book - Strong Fathers, Strong Daughters by Dr. Meg Meeker.
Once he's done reading it - you may want to read it yourself.
It's a fairly easy and quick read but so critical.
My husband was the same way with our son. It was so frustrating because our son had colic and my husband had no interest in him. It was like pulling teeth to get him to hold our son just so I could go to the bathroom. I have talked to him a ton of times and told him that if he is going to be like that the next time around, then I don't want another baby. It was sooo hard doing it all by myself. And it drove me nuts when he would say that our son isn't interesting but that he would get more interesting when he got older. I wasn't asking him to spend time with our son, I just wanted help. BLEH!
i think men feel attached to the new baby.
but this sounds strange that your husband is finding it difficult to develop any kind of bonding with the girl.
if you've seen him overcome it before then i wouldn't sweat it too much. last thing you want to do is make a bigger deal out of it than it really is. more stress and worry rarely helps a situation. chances are it's just a repeat performance. luckily, you know the story and it ends well. just be your happy, glowy, sexy self. it's easier to get caught up in the excitement that way. but if he doesn't . . .
(from personal experience and introspection):
as a first-time father i felt the same way. admittedly it felt a little strange to feel so disconnected even as the pregnancy progressed to the point i knew the sex - a girl. despite how much the mommy-to-be tried to include me (singing, talking, reading, etc.) to the belly, it just felt forced and insincere.
just for reference, i'm probably what you'd call an average guy. not an over-emotional sap but not a cold-hearted lumberjack either (no offense to all the lumberjack softies out there). somewhere in the middle. but to feel this little attachment to what's supposed to be "daddy's little girl"? my first girl? i had to question my humanity, if only to myself. i stated outwardly (whilst secretly hoping inwardly) that it would all change when she was born. after i recovered from the nausea that is. but to no avail. i was still the same distanced wannabe father. long story short - it took almost a month for me to start feeling the feelings everyone talks about.
looking back it should have been more obvious. ignoring the 9 month head start (probably more like 6 if you held your breath for the first 3) mommies have: think about the connection you established in the months before you even saw her. feeling her move inside you, responding to your actions, your voice, your emotions. the first time you felt her hiccup. the first time you felt that tiny hand or foot pushing out. the panic you felt when she didn't move all morning. the relief you felt when she finally did. the overwhelming sense of responsibility at having something that dependent on everything you do. and the complete bliss when you finally got past that paralyzing fear of screwing it all up.
we expectant fathers experience all of that second hand. we only know it through your words and analogies that, even you know, do not quite conveying how intimate all of it truly is. we want to understand. we want to feel. but we can't. not yet. we are destined to be 9 months behind the curve.
and even after she's born, we are fully in the nature mode of parenthood. constantly feeding, always changing, barely sleeping. living our lives in what seems like an infinite 2-hour cycle. for the first month or so it's just about keeping the baby alive. i see this baby. i love it. i know it's more important than anything else in my life. but almost because i know that's how i supposed to feel. that's how i should feel. i repeat the mantra thinking i'll convince myself. i will, right?
i mean, the relationship i had with my daughter early on was so one-sided. action with no reaction. all the effort and emotion was coming from me. it's as if (and please pardon the comparison) i was caring for a plant. it wasn't until she smiled at me. at the sound of my voice or the sight of my face. and not a smile you think might be gas. the one that melts your heart. the one that makes me believe what i'm doing makes a difference in her life. that what i'm doing matters to her. that's when every daddy falls for his little girl.
give it time. we all come around sooner or later.
Yeah come to think of it. I didn't bond with my son for prolly the first 3 months and I'm the mom! I think it just takes some time with some people.