Call it a blessing or a curse. There are people who start things at an early age. There are those who become parents, a dad or a mom at an age earlier than expected in society.
It really depends on your own metrics but people classify those who fall under the age of 24 and are already parents as young moms and young dads. These people have either figured their lives out or want to figure life with their significant others by their side. Some might think they’ve lost their youthful years but for most of them, they are living life even in their early twenties. Why wait until you’re 30 before having a baby, one of the greatest blessings that life can give?
But don’t get us wrong, building a family is in no way a piece of cake. It’s not as easy as picking up a spoon and fork and getting a handful of the cake before you. There’s no one way of eating it or enjoying its sweetness. There will be many bumps along the way but you will find that towards the end of the day, you feel fulfilled and rewarded with your kid’s genuine smile and warm touch.
When you look back at the years and how far you’ve come, you’ll simply give yourself a pat on the shoulder for a job well done. The experiences of young dads and moms are different, especially since they play different roles in the household. This time, here is our sage advice for the young dads out there:
1. Do not follow the advice of others.
It’s a little hypocritical to say, if not a lot because we are giving you unsolicited advice right now. But you will notice how everyone becomes a Karen when you’re so young and already a dad. They will give you pointers on the right way of holding your baby, feeding them, or dress them without you asking for any advice. They would even compliment you for taking good care of the baby because fathers aren’t the conventional caregivers of their children.
Shut the noise and listen to what your mind tells you. Believe in yourself. You will eventually get to know your baby a lot more as you take care of him or her on an everyday basis. You know your baby more than anyone else so trusts yourself when it comes to how you handle the baby. If you need advice, then go ahead and ask friends and your parents what they can impart to you.
2. Let your wife sleep.
This is a partnership. You are one-half of the baby before you. As much as your wife is very skilled in taking care of your little human, she also needs to rest. Allow her to energize and enjoy the experience of taking care of your baby together by giving her the gift of rest. Take turns in guarding the baby so that both of you can take precious sleep, something that is elusive once you have a new baby in the house. Never take it for granted.
And when you do get to sleep with your wife, wake up with her when she gets up. Do not sleep a little longer when you see that your wife has gotten up to take care of the baby. Show her that you support her and that both of you are on this journey together.
3. Be mindful of the things that you buy.
The baby market is huge and once you become a young parent, you will be astonished by all the products available in the market. Fight that urge to buy everything that will pique your interest. You have to buy only the items that will be of use to you and your kid. We don’t want you to be wasting money on stupid purchases anymore.
For instance, even though this is not a baby product, as a young dad you can show up at your best with uninterrupted time for your baby if you have already finished your work tasks. Make sure to work efficiently and productively by having ergonomic furniture in place. You may use standing desks or standing converters to upgrade your work area and allow you to conveniently shift from a sitting to a standing position and vice versa.
You can always buy less and in effect be buying more when you invest your money in the right products.
4. Avoid doing work when you’re doing baby duties.
Your time with family should be undivided and uninterrupted. But this also means that you have to be up on your toes most of the time because you can’t sacrifice your job over taking care of your baby. It doesn’t mean that your life has already ended when you became a father. Now since you have another human to take care of, you need to take a step back and assess your current job. Is it something that motivates and inspires you to wake up every day to finish your tasks?
Your job is important, and you don't want your career to suffer just because you're a father now. You need to strike a balance between your personal life with your new baby and your work life that you need to support your little growing family.
But for most dads, work is just working. Don’t be a workaholic or be so obsessed with making money. You need to live life first for you to be able to say that you love your life as it is at the moment.
5. Carry your baby.
Don’t hesitate to have your baby in your arms. Even if you are not confident and this is your first time doing so, know that no one started as an expert. It can scare you but you just have to be extra careful if you don’t want any bad things happening. They say that one of the strongest ways you can bond with your baby is when you hold them and carry them in your arms. Do not miss this precious moment just because you are too scared.