Cheer Up, Daddy!

It’s been a long 9 months, and that little bundle of joy you’ve been carrying around has finally arrived. After all the oohs and ahhs and opening up all the gifts of baby clothes your little one will  probably never wear, reality settles in. You know what I’m talking about.  You’re overjoyed, happy as can be – but also learning that new mamahood means dealing with the crying, the fussing, the sleepless nights…. On top of it all, your hormones are on a rollercoaster ride from hell. Oh, did I mention you may also have to deal with a daddy who’s in the dumps?

It seems postnatal depression now affects up to five percent of new fathers. Some guys just have a tough time dealing with all the responsibilities that come along with their new role. Researchers at Oxford University say dads who are depressed tend to spend less time with their babies, which could lead to problems for the kids down the road.

But what exactly is postnatal depression in dads? It’s clearly not hormonal. And while I definitely think it is possible for men to be overwhelmed and to suffer from some sort of depression once their child is born, I really think they need to put their big boy pants on and take one for the team. After carrying the baby and going through labor, we don’t need to deal with a sad sack who can’t bring himself to enjoy his baby and help out.

Dealing with a newborn can be tough.  Knowing you have a partner who is not 100% there is only going to make it tougher. While it’s hard to control your thoughts and emotions, I think men really need to put their partner and baby first.

Do you think men who suffer from postnatal depression are being selfish? Do they have a right to feel this way?