I recently saw a list written by a man of 15 things men should know about pregnant women. There were several good points on there but it got me thinking about my own pregnancy and what I’ve needed of my husband. So, here’s another list:
1. She will need more massages than ever before
Your woman is now carrying extra weight that’s come on rather quickly and isn’t distributed very evenly. Her back hurts all. the. time. She needs more back rubs than ever before and she needs you to do it happily because she’s also more sensitive than ever before (hormones) and if you’re begrudgingly rubbing her back she knows and it is not at all relaxing. On top of that, she needs you to volunteer back rubs rather than her having to always ask for them. She knows you need back rubs also, but she also probably needs them more than you during this period of time. She also doesn’t want to have to beg for her needs to be met. Don’t forget the feet.
2. She needs you to pick up the meal cooking
This extra weight is a bitch. Add to that swollen feet and legs, ravenous hunger, and a squished stomach and your lady likely won’t be cooking anymore – at least for awhile. She will need you to figure out how to fend for yourself without complaint and probably also provide nourishment for her.
3. She will seem irrational with her mood swings
Her mood swings are going to drive you crazy – almost as much as they drive her crazy. Remember, when a woman is having a mood it is very valid and justified in her mind. DO NOT ARGUE WITH HER. Also, do not sulk. Probably the best thing you can do if she is in a mood you don’t like is increase the amount of love and affection, ask if you can help with anything, and if she says she just needs to be alone then smile and leave her alone. These moods hurt your feelings, and she is aware of that and throughout each mood she is trying really hard to snap herself out of it while feeling incredibly and overwhelmingly guilty for being an irrational bitch. Just give her time. She’ll probably be laughing at something in an hour.
4. She needs more pillows, more bed, and more couch than you
Your woman will find it impossible to find a comfortable position and will require all the pillows to ease joint pain, muscle pain, uneven weight gain, acid reflux, backache, and swollen feet. This will require more of the bed than she normally took up. She also can no longer curl up in a cute little ball to allow room for both of you to lay down on the couch, so maybe let her lay down while you sit up (this is a great opportunity to rub her swollen, sore feet). Again, don’t complain about this.
5. Don’t pull away affectionately
Perhaps one of the hardest parts of being pregnant is letting go of her ability to do what she wants, when she wants, how she wants. She probably feels pretty affectionate still but is having a hard time getting into a comfortable cuddle position. Don’t give up. Help her. This goes with sex, also. Her sex drive will fluctuate more than ever but her options for fun and comfortable positions will begin to diminish as the pregnancy goes on. Don’t just stop trying to have sex with her (unless she explicitly tell you to). She might still want sex just needs a little help. She also needs to be told she’s still beautiful and sexy because I promise she doesn’t feel it anymore. If the only position she is capable of is laying there like a dead fish while you do your thang repeatedly tell her how sexy she is because she’s probably literally just feeling like a dead fish and crying on the inside. Also, just because she’s no longer initiating like she maybe used to don’t give up. It’s hard to initiate sex when you don’t feel sexy but she’ll probably reciprocate if you initiate and make her feel sexy. Remember, pregnancy is also a countdown to ZERO SEX FOR 6-8 WEEKS! So, don’t give up and just get it on!
6. Be consistent
Your woman is going through a million physical changes in less than a year and with that comes the emotional changes and the requirement that she let go of certain freedoms she used to enjoy. She will have to learn to ask for more help from you but it won’t be easy and she may push herself too hard trying to accomplish the little things she used to take for granted – like vacuuming and grocery shopping. You will see how this hurts her more and more and you will tell her to ask you for help. Ask you for everything. Why? Because you love her and you hate to see her suffer. This will be hard for her, especially if she’s an independent type A alpha female, so you will remind her over and over to ask for help, let you do it, etc., etc. If this is the case then don’t nit pick what she can and can’t ask of you as she’s asking you because I promise it took a LOT for her to ask you in the first place. If she finally asks you to do something (by finally I mean it took her hours to work up to asking it) don’t get pissed at her for asking you to do that. This is a sure fire way to begin the silent treatment and you may hear her crying on the other side of the slammed bathroom door. And she may just put herself through another grocery run and cleaning the bathroom even though she’s in physical agony because she’s scared to risk the possibility of another hormonal preggo emotional breakdown that is the inevitable response to you not doing what she asks even though you told her to ask…and then when you complain that she didn’t ask she’ll probably lie and say it’s fine, that she wanted to do it herself (which is actually half true because she’s bored out of her preggo mind).
7. Do not talk about your fear surrounding labor and delivery
You’re not the one preparing to squeeze a watermelon sized human out of a tiny hole. You don’t get to talk about fear. Or fainting. Or not wanting to be in the room. She is doing everything she can to mentally and physically prepare herself to face the D day with strength and positivity and she needs you to be her rock. If you waiver so does she and the fear you feel will begin to make its way into her. She will feel like she’s in it alone and that will scare and depress her. Instead, tell her how strong she is, that she can do it, and that you’ll be there for her every step of the way. Talk about how you can’t wait to meet your new baby at the end of delivery instead of focusing on the fear of delivery itself. Express joy and excitement not fear and trepidation. Remember, she is more sensitive than ever before.
8. She will be forget things
Maybe she was always on top of everything before and you could always count on her to remember where you put that thing or when and where that appointment is. Her mind will begin to slip and it’s a scary thing for her to experience. Don’t make fun of her. Don’t laugh (too much). Maybe release your expectations of her memory a little bit and try to pick up more of the scheduling. And if she’s still working her job her brain is probably more mushy than ever by the time she gets home, so while you may have missed her and have a lot you want to tell her go slow, let her nap first, and if she says “what??” one too many times then take that as a cue that maybe you should just put on a movie and cuddle instead.