Dads at the birth of their children
Check out this story, Who let the dads in?, on fathers attending the birth of their children in today's Sunday Age.
It's very interesting that more and more people are paying attention to the role of fathers in their partners' labouring and the birth of their children. But strangely, fathering is still 'problematised' in these discussions.
One of the fathers in the story said:
Some of the births can be very traumatic and leave [fathers] fairly distressed and unhappy…Curiously, this was suggested as context for why some fathers are ambilvent, unhappy or uncertain about the 'expectation' that they be at their child's birth. Sure, some fathers are unhappy that the births were difficult or traumatic (who wouldn't be?) but surely that is a function of the birth experience itself, rather than of being a man at the birth?
All the same, it was clear that many fathers thought that the experience was important and meaningful in their lives.
One thing for me is clear: being at the birth of my son Jacob was one of the most intense and important things in my life. And I certainly want to be at the birth of my next child! Any time this week!