Thursday, 15 June 2017

5 Issues New Fathers Face - Member Article

Badass Dad Clan is proud to present the first in a series of member articles about common parenting topics.

5 Issues New Fathers Face

1. The Memory Game.

So, you've found out that your partner is pregnant recently. Now you'll need to clear some space in your internal memory to fit in all the appointment dates. Even if your
partner uses a calendar, I guarantee you she'll still forget. You are in charge of this whilst your first born child is baking away and playing havoc on your partners hormones.
Do whatever you need to do to ensure you remember about the appointments and remind her with plenty of time, so she doesn't make other arrangements. Nothing worse than arranging to
meet a friend for coffee, when she should be at the midwife appointment! She'll also require regular urine samples to take with to the appointments, make sure she keeps on top of that.

It can be tough, but as long as you keep on top of things, you'll do a great job!

2. Hormones attack!

As touched on briefly in the previous challenge, dodging those hormonal attacks is quite a challenge in it's self. A baking child will do all kinds of things to your partner's hormones
She could be real loving and friendly one moment, then turn into the devil the next. The key to this is not to take anything she says negative to heart, brush it off and try not to go on the defensive.

Your main job is to always be there for her throughout the pregnancy no matter what, tell her she's doing a great job and ask if there's anything she needs help with from time to time, without overdoing it.
Even after the birth, your partner's hormones may still be all over the place, watch your back and enjoy the moments you have together :)

3. Crying Detection

Oh boy, where do we start - There are so many different cries that you'll hear from your new child. Including but not limited to the following needs: 
Thirst/Hunger, Sleep, Cuddles, You just hurt me, OMG I just hurt myself,  Nappy change required!. 
Each one is slightly different, but sometimes can be hard to distinguish from one another.
You'll find one day that you're trying to do ALL the things to calm your child. All you have to do is think systematically. Go through all the scenarios and maybe you might realise you've not done something for a while, like smell their bum and change the nappy! 🙂

4. Who needs sleep anyway?

It's true, us guys do usually like our sleep and lay ins... what am I saying, what's a lay in? You'll be lucky!

The first thing you'll realise is that your new born child is in charge, they call the shots, you're no longer the man of the house.
If that child needs feeding at 2am, they'll make damn sure they're fed at 2am. Then again at 5am...
You need to be prepared for a broken sleep pattern for at least the first year or so - And remember, it WILL get better. My son is now 14 months old,
and only just starting to sleep through the night. For quite some time, he'd wake up for a night feed - I think this may be partially down to our own doing. But once
we started cutting out his day time milk feed and replaced it with water/juice, he's now learning to go longer between milk feeds (Hoorah!).

5. Household chores.

You may or may not already help with this around the house. But if you don't be prepared to step it up! Your partner has just had a hellish ~9 months
and a very emotional and stressful birth. The least you can do is take some of the weight off her hands around the house. Cooking, cleaning, hoovering, dusting.. 
You get the idea! - Anything you can do, is one less task for mummy to worry about.

The main thing you need to be doing is supporting on the night feeds, which ties closely together with the above challenge of your sleeping pattern!.
Don't even think it, I know you're thinking it!! Before you say "But my child is being breast fed, how can I help?" - Here's some news, they can express the milk
and build up storage (You can even freeze it for up to 6 months!), you can feed the breast milk with a bottle. So don't think you're getting out of the feeds.

And as Sheldon Cooper says on The Big Bang Theory - "If you have time to lean, you have time to clean!"

6. I thought you said there were 5??

Here's the fun part, the learning will never stop. You'll never master being a dad, there will always be things thrown in your face later in life. You might think you've mastered the newborn stage, which is great.
But do you know how to handle them when they're 5 or 10? What about if you have one child, then another child several years later, will you remember everything or will it be like new?

Be prepared for anything. One day your grown up boy or girl, might bring round their friend who's the same sex and tell you that it's their (girl/boy)friend. That's never something you can fully prepare for, but take it as it comes.

The chances are there is someone who has already been through it and can offer advice, Fatherhood is all about learning and sharing experiences with other dads out there. 
Together, we'll be Bad Ass dads and nothing will be able to take us down.

Peace out,

Badass Dad Matthew Scully

About the Author:

I'm Matt Scully, 29 and father to a 14 month old boy called George. We live in North Wales on the coast with lots of amazing landscapes. I also gained an 11 year old step daughter when I entered the relationship.
That's a challenge in it's self, having to experience the whole new born thing, whilst having an already grown up and in school step daughter. 
I'm taking on the challenge with full force and enjoying every moment!

Sunday, 4 June 2017

Dads Hall of Fame 06 - Antony Church

Every Month we bring you one of our outstanding members from the Badass Dad Clan to go down in history as a damn good dad in our Hall of Fame, This month we caught up with Antony to hear his answers

Badass Dad Antony with Fiancee Hollie

You have become officially known as the biggest beard in the Badass Dad Clan, but who really is this Bearded Wonder?

I'm Antony, I'm from Hull, I'm engaged to be married to my incredible other half Hollie and father to Zeke. For a living I run a software consulting business, I have been programming and dicking around with computers for over ten years. When I'm not at my desk I play a lot of Ice and Roller hockey for a few of our local teams, I've been playing since I was 7 or 8 years old and it's a huge family sport.

What is your favourite father/child activity or hobby?

Zeke is only just turning two and just likes to cause havoc, but my favourite activity with him is when we play knee hockey, having played hockey pretty much all of my life it's great to introduce him to the game. I think his favourite thing to do with me is playing rough.

Badass Dad Antony and his Kickass Kid Zeke

What would you say is the greatest challenge of being a father?

The greatest challenge I have found about being a parent is patience. I have always been super patient but Zeke seems to know how to use all of that up in a split second. Luckily I have a really good role model myself because my dad is amazing (don't tell him I said that) and one of my best friends.

Knowing what you know now, is there anything you would do differently as a parent?

Until Zeke was just over one year old we lived in a flat with no garden. Looking back we should have moved somewhere with a garden much sooner, but we got caught with Zeke the week we moved into the flat. Now we live in a house with a garden and end up spending hours in it just running around.

Zeke and Hollie

What is your most treasured moment with your child so far?

My most treasured moment with Zeke was when he took his first steps without holding onto anything, I remember it like it was yesterday. He was sofa surfing for a month or so, then one night I knelt down at the other side of the rug he was on and convinced him to potter over to me. I know I'll never forget it, I've never been so proud of something in my life.

What advice would you give to new first time fathers?

My advice to first time fathers is try and take every minute of it in, because they learn a million new things every day and before you know it they are stringing sentences together and causing all sorts of trouble you can't even imagine.

Zeke and the Gruffalo

What do you have to say about Badass Dad Clan?

Badass Dad Clan is an awesome group of dads, it's so awesome to see that there are tones of other dads doing a good job and actually caring. It's awesome to know you're not the only one.

Zeke Climbing Mount Dad