It's not just women who need help with the labour; men need help during labour as well but are often left out for obvious reasons.
Some of men's most common worries about pregnancy and having a baby are these......
Fears about increased responsibility Worried that they won't know how to help their partner even though they want to help. Feeling left out of the pregnancy Surprised at how ill their partner may be feeling, and not knowing what they can do about it Worried about money Feeling unable to relate to the baby yet Concerned that their partner has been feeling tired or sick for a long time Worried about how their lives as a couple will change once baby has arrived
Not surprisingly, men often have their own worries about the labour and birth too:
Not knowing if they will be able to cope at the birth Really concerned about having to see their partner in pain and being unable to do much Worries that it may all become too medical and gory Fears that they may be ignored by medical staff Anxious that they may miss the birth because they might get to the hospital too late
Men also enjoy many aspects of the pregnancy and birth. They like knowing that they can actually father a child. They love watching their partner's body growing and feel very excited when they see baby on the scan. Just like mums-to-be, they also like telling everyone that they're expecting a baby and they enjoy planning and thinking about the baby even if it's not on quite the same scale as their pregnant partner.
When it comes to the birth, there are positives for men too. They also feel immense relief that it's all happening at last after 9 very long months. They look forward to seeing the baby and knowing he or she is okay and then telling everyone about the baby, and finally, becoming a family.
Before the birth, the mother may feel concern for the health of her unborn baby but for men there is a constant, often unspoken anxiety about the risks to not one, but two other people for whom they care deeply and this is something we all need to remember.