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Posted: 1/6/2003 9:29:59 AM EDT
Fellow Ar-15.com-ites,

I have good news!!! My wife and myself found out today that we're gonna be parents!! This is our first child so I was curious to see if any of you esteemed gentlemen had any advice for a newbie soon-to-be father.



The normally quiet, now a tinge nervous Kurt_Austin.

Link Posted: 1/6/2003 9:31:47 AM EDT
Hide your gun collection from your wife so she thinks they're gone and doesn't insist on your selling it.

Oh yeah, and watch out for leaky diapers.
Link Posted: 1/6/2003 9:38:00 AM EDT
Link Posted: 1/6/2003 9:55:42 AM EDT
Originally Posted By lostwildcat:
our son is 4mos now so listen up!

Go to all the dr. appts before and after (you'll be glad later)

Take your wife out to dinner every chance you get, go somewhere quiet and enjoy it.

Dont buy a ton of diapers now, as they will grow out of them faster than you can imagine.


Limit the number of guests you have in the deliver/recovery room in advance (we had a lot of people show up and it pissed me off/wore us out)


Get those odd jobs around the house done now, when the baby gets here you'll be consumed for the first 6 months.

Dont spend a lot of money of cute baby clothes for when he/she is born, they will grow out of clothes as fast as diapers.

we'll thats all for now, hope this helps, these are a few of things i learned/wish i'd known before.


Good luck and congrats!
View Quote

I'd like to add


buy clothes that are more function than fashion. Don't buy tops with buttons or snaps down the back (how would you lie to lay on them all day long?)

Sleep now.

Get used to holding baby on both sides of your body...don't always hold them in the same position.

Sleep when they sleep..

You can never have enough recieving blankets in the beginning. Same with bibs when they are older.

WASH YOUR HANDS ALL THE TIME! use a mild anti-bacterial soap.

keep your house a constant temperature

don't let the dogs lick baby

sleep whenever and wherever possible

take turns at night (unless wife is breastfeeding...then get baby and bring him/her to wife in bed)

Take as much time off as you can when baby arrives...your wife will love you for it. ( I took 6 weeks...two vacation and 4 family medical leave weeks)

Don't keep it church quiet when baby is sleeping...the more background noise they get used to, the better off you are.

When baby is sleeping, make sure his/her head is not always to the right or left. They can get a flat spot on the back of their head, and their head could be lopsided and the jaw pushed forward on one side of thier face (worst case scenario)

tell your wife she looks beautiful after she delivers, tell her you love her all the time, and don't fall asleep in the delivery room.
most of all SLEEP
Link Posted: 1/6/2003 9:56:32 AM EDT
Don't expect any action in the sack for a good month...she will be swollen and sore.  Get up and give the kid a bottle at 3 am so your wife doesn't have to...she will appreciate this to no end!  Don't expect to get any sleep.  Keep telling your wife how beautiful and great she looks...she's gonna be going through a lot of changes and probably will feel pretty damn ugly and fat for a lot of the time.  Be prepared to go to the store for pickled herring and marshmallows at 130 am...  Sex?  let her be on top...  That's all for now.
Link Posted: 1/6/2003 4:47:12 PM EDT
GOOD LUCK!! I have 2 girls,4 and 9. I'm 47. I hope yer young and able bodied,'cause yer gonna need ALL the energy you have to keep up!! And that's the truth.
Link Posted: 1/6/2003 5:07:47 PM EDT
Link Posted: 1/6/2003 5:12:40 PM EDT
Link Posted: 1/6/2003 5:28:02 PM EDT
From the father of a 20 year old daughter - start saving now.  No, not next week, not tomorrow...run to a financial advisor and start putting money into a mutual fund or some other type of investment immediately!  Have it directly removed from your checking account so it's automatically part of your weekly/monthly budget.

Congratulations!  Prepare to have your world turned upside down and your priorities twisted inside out.  It's an amazing feeling.
Link Posted: 1/6/2003 6:17:33 PM EDT
Congratulations!  As the father of two boys, now 8 and 11:

Get used to the idea that every shirt and jacket you own for the next two years will have streaks down each shoulder, front and back, from all the spitups.

One of the most rewarding moments in an adult's life is when your child smiles for the first time!

Remember that your wife did most of the work.  Treat her accordingly.

You will have Cheerios and french fries in the back seat of your car for the next five years.  

Don't trap yourself into the idea that "I have a newborn, I can't go anywhere."  That's true for the first couple of months, but you still have to maintain the relationship with your wife.  Go on dates as often as possible, as soon as possible.  If you don't get in that habit early, you won't do it at all.

Take a hard look at the way you act and the things you say/do, because from the earliest age those little tape recorders with legs remember and copy everything you do/say/think.  More is caught than taught!

Having kids is the E-ticket ride, one of life's ultimate joys and experiences.  Congratulations again, and enjoy!
Link Posted: 1/6/2003 6:38:06 PM EDT
you will never look at mustard the same way again.
Link Posted: 1/6/2003 7:56:49 PM EDT
When you're lying on your back, holding junior/juniorette up with extended arms, hold them slightly off center to your face. You'll know what I mean the first time you do it and you see that cute little mouth open.

Link Posted: 1/6/2003 8:01:52 PM EDT
Start buying diapers NOW!!!  My wife and I hanvt bought diapers since our son was born 6mo ago.  Its a good feeling being prepared when the kid shows up.
Link Posted: 1/6/2003 8:20:53 PM EDT
I am a father of three, 12 year old boy, 10 year old girl, and a two year old boy. My advice to you is to be prepared to be the proudest, happiest man on earth (you will also be tired, but hey...it will be worth it.) Take lots of pictures so you can remember the beginning always. Congratulations!!!!!!!!!!!!!

...and get some sleep now [;)]
Link Posted: 1/6/2003 8:35:29 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/6/2003 8:38:05 PM EDT by DrFrige]
[b]BEST ADVICE GIVEN:[/b] Take no one's advice!!! [;)]

There is NOTHING and I do mean [b]NOTHING[/b] that ANYONE here can say to you to prepare you for what you are about to experience.

It is going to be THE BEST experience in your life and the only thing that will come in second to that will be a FAR DISTANT SECOND.

AHHHHH I remember when my baby girl was born my legs turned to Jell-o and I cried uncontrollably.

And at that split second your child enters the world, that same second, your life is forever changed.

OH YEAH.... SLEEP NOW! because lord only knows you aint gettin' any later!

Edited to say: Oh yeah...DUH!!! i forgot:

Link Posted: 1/6/2003 8:38:14 PM EDT
Expecting my first son Jan 13.  Already have a 2 yr. old girl. Dropping some poundage because I'll need to be in shape for all the babychasing.
Link Posted: 1/6/2003 8:54:23 PM EDT
[red]congratulations and welcome to the fatherhood club![/red]

just a few things that ive learned:

1. safety wise, make sure baby's crib sheets are TIGHT! i mean, bounce-a-quarter-on-it tight! lots of SIDS deaths from baby inhaling CO2 from the pocket that forms from wrinkles in the sheets.  

2.  get lots of pictures. i was just looking at them again tonight before i logged on here.  it brings smiles to your heart when you see them that small, when they are presently destroying your house and mind when they turn 7.  [;)]

3.  get a breasteses pump. seriously, if the wife is planning on breastfeeding, and if she can, store the stuff in the freezer. makes for an easier late night feeding session. [b]DO NOT[/b], i repeat, [b]DO NOT[/b] use this for coffee creamer substitute.  youll swear off coffee if you do.  [:D] and no, i didnt try this myself dammit!

4.  spare no expense at getting a baby carrier/car-seat. do your research, visit the stores, drop kick the display seats to see if they are tuff enuf for junior.  

5.  love your wife 10x more (if thats even possible) for she is going to give you the most wonderful gift a woman can give a man.  sniff-sniff....

again, congratulations!!! make sure to post pics after you bring the bundle of joy home!
Link Posted: 1/6/2003 11:16:26 PM EDT
When holding a newborn be sure to support the head until their neck is strong enough to do it themselves.

Be alert to what gravity might do in any situation.

Any worry about whether you're doing the right thing is natural.  You will make mistakes but do not need to be perfect.
Link Posted: 1/6/2003 11:24:26 PM EDT
Talk to a tax advisor about starting an educational IRA or other fund for your child's education now.  

Lots of pictures?

Good luck!
Link Posted: 1/7/2003 2:59:36 AM EDT
Oh yeah....Congrats!

Have your wife pick out a set of pajamas and a nice robe to wear in the hospital afterwards. Trust me, they will feel a whole lot better if they at least have a nice new outfit to wear. Also, a new outfit to wear home from the hospital would be nice. Wait til she is 8 months or so to pick  it out. That way you will have a better understanding as to what her size might change to.

This may sound stupid, but if the hospital has "informational" videos on how to bath a baby, breast feed, change diapers .....usually they have them in the maternity ward....WATCH THEM with  your wife! You will learn a lot of crap from these. You can watch them, rewind and re-watch them to pick up things that the maternity nurses might forget to tell you.

It's a wonderful thing having a child...my boy will turn 6 months old on the 9th of Jan. Just wait till they laugh for the first time...you will want to cry.
Link Posted: 1/7/2003 5:39:30 AM EDT
Originally Posted By LARRYG:
View Quote

and: An adventure is on the way.
Link Posted: 1/7/2003 5:52:30 AM EDT
Link Posted: 1/7/2003 5:56:28 AM EDT
Originally Posted By 308wood:
you will never look at mustard the same way again.
View Quote


Good Lord man!



Congratulations! It is awesome. Just be an involved Dad. Children these days are missing the father...
Link Posted: 1/7/2003 6:09:56 AM EDT

Get ready to wash 2-3 load's of clothes and burp cloth's etc. a day.

When baby sleep's momma need's to be sleeping!

You can always' exchange diaper's for the next larger size. (if unopened)

If it is a boy...keep his pee-shooter covered when changing his diaper or someone will get sprayed![:D]

If your wife will be breast-feeding then tell her to stay away from cabbage, broccoli, and salad's...They cause gas in momma and more in baby![:(]

Leave the tag's on all the clothes until you are ready for them to wear them...If they outgrow them you can exchange them.

Get a big index card box for all your receipt's and keep them organized!

If I think of more I will post it later!


My daughter will be 7 in March and my son will be 4 in February!

They are the best thing to happen to my wife and I and we would not trade them for the world!


Link Posted: 1/7/2003 6:18:20 AM EDT
My daughter just turned a year old last month and she has been the best thing to happen to us.

Buy some type of video camera.  You won't believe how fast they change.  Plus if you have relatives far off, you can dub a copy to send to them.

If your wife is breastfeeding, buy one of the good,expensive pumps.  The one the hospital gave us wasn't worth squat.  We bought a $200 one and stored up tons of milk.  The thing paid for itself the first month or so if you consider the price of formula.  

And...Go to the range as much as you can now!
Link Posted: 1/7/2003 6:33:31 AM EDT
Link Posted: 1/7/2003 6:42:27 AM EDT
Diapers aren't that bad.  You get used to it pretty quick and eventually get real efficient at changing them.

Changing tables are optional.  At first we used a Black and Decker Workmate with a concave changing pad on top.  Worked okay, but it tends to fix you in place.  It's actually more efficient to change the kid on the floor, and less nerve wracking since they cannot roll off the floor.

Diapers.  Newborn diapers will only last a couple weeks, but you'll go through a TON of them on your first baby.  You'll be changing the kid every hour or so.  Second children you change less often.

Ditto the advice on taking your wife out on dates.  My wife and I failed in this advice.  We didn't manage to get out together alone for over a year after each child.  For a while we were more like roomates than husband and wife.  

Find a good baby sitter who has experience with infants.  There is nothing worse than getting called home by a skittish baby sitter. First Aid training is a must.  Ask to see certificates of completion.  Our high school has a babysitting program students can take that covers all that material.  It's actually more of a pre-parenthood primer since the teen pregnancy rate is appalling around here. We contacted them and got recommendations.

If possible, avoid putting your child into daycare.  This is a personal opinion so take it for what it's worth.  Your child will be going through a lot of changes in the first couple years of his or her life.  You don't want to miss the milestones.  Also, neural development is in overdrive during the first 5 years of life.  Babies are exposed to every single little bug and virus in the freakin' world in day care.  Does it make sense to you to use up your kids limited resources fighting bugs when they should be building their brain?  I suspect rising rates of autism may be linked to daycare disease exposure during the developmental period, but that's just a WAG.

DON'T FIND OUT THE SEX OF THE BABY IN ADVANCE.  That's a wonderful surprise to have waiting for you in the delivery room.

Don't flake out in the delivery room.  Be there, be focused on what you and your wife are doing.  Get plenty or rest in the weeks prior to the due date (it can happen any time in there).  For our first child I had been keeping pretty late nights and only had an hour or so of sleep before we had to leave for the hospital.  I was in really tough shape after 23 hours of labor.  My wife was in worse shape.

Back labor sucks.  If your wife experiences back labor, it's about the only thing WORSE than passing a kidney stone, or so I have been told by people who have been through both.   My wife went through back labor both times and began to cry uncontrollably when she realized she was going to have to go through it again.

Painkillers are your friend.  But they can also slow down labor if introduced too early. The interthecal epidural is a wonder to behold.  Your wife will not loose the ability to push, or walk around or anything else.  She will feel the contractions, but they will be more of an intense pressure rather than an intense pain.  It makes a world of difference.  When your wife is in as much pain as childbirth can put her through, you will be willing to hack of limbs with a dull pocketknife to make her feel better.  Modern painkillers are an absolute wonder.

Babies do not poop in the same way that adults do.  They have a liquid diet, so their poop is liquid as well. Sometimes it comes out like a firehose and will jet out of even tightly sealed diapers.  Duct tape ain't got nothin' that baby poop can't get past. So there will be days where your little bundle of joy poops out three or even four outfits....before lunch.   Get over it. Some babies take perverse pleasure in letting go with a noxious fountain of filth at precisely the moment when you open their diaper and unmask the offending orifice to a target...such as your videotape collection.  That fountain of excrement will sneak through the tightest cracks in those cardboard jackets and you'll spend hours cleaning things out (ask me how I know.)   So always have a something ready to catch any surprise fountains before you open the diaper.

CUT THE CORD.  I did it for the first baby, but wasn't able to for the second.  I really missed it the second time through.

Watch the delivery.  It can be pretty gross and change your opinion about what those particular organs are for, but it's an incredible experience to see your child come into the world.

Make that six weeks....most OB/GYNs out there recomend a 6 week no sex period after delivery.  Tough deliveries can mandate an even longer recovery period.  Don't be upset if your wife ain't interested for a while either...she's got other concerns.

Colic....sucks.  With my son, we found that he would calm down pretty well if we carried him in an upside down football hold, with his head cradled in the crook of your arm and chest and the hand supporting his thigh/crotch.  The pressure on his stomach made him feel better.

Babies are used to motion and noise.  Amniotic fluid is a great sound carrier and mom is always in motion while the baby is in the womb, so don't be afraid of a little noise and motion outside of the womb.  Jog 'em up and down a bit while walking them around...don't shake them, just jog them a bit. It can actually help settle them down a bit. This is why driving around in the car is effective.

Get ready for a great ride. Kids are cool.

Link Posted: 1/7/2003 6:47:47 AM EDT
As soon as you can, get your child on YOUR sleep schedule. Do not let them rule your sleeping schedule forever. I know this is impossible for the first few months. But you will see shortly how to do it. If they will not sleep at night change the nap schedule, or eliminate a nap all together. Alter the feedings, whatever, you are the parents, do not let the child rule for long or you will regret it.

Do not ever start letting them sleep in you and your wifes bed. EVER, your wife will want to especially if she's breast feeding, or if the kids sick. Never allow it not even once. Start talking about it now. Your child must realize it has it's own room and feel safe and comfortable there.

Start saving $$ NOW.

Hold your children EVERY day look them in the eye and TELL them that you love them, every day.
Half the problem in this country is kids need fathers. God made things balanced that way.

Start telling your wife shes beautiful, you'll see the glow on her face anyway. Tell her you love her every day. Mean it, you're about to recieve the worlds greatest gift. She's the one with the envelope.

Start disciplining your kids from the first day they come home from the hospital. I don't mean start giving them spankings, although I do think spankings should start THE FIRST time you see the will of the child go against your will. You'll see the open defiance in their eyes, spank that hiney RIGHT THEN. Give them a chance to get used to your way of doing things and don't let them alter it too much. I KNOW, I KNOW, you will have to make MANY changes, my point is do not let them have free reign of the house. Start talking about limits and guidelines NOW and adhere to the ones that are reasonable when your child comes home. Make up new ones for the unreasonable ones that you threw out.

Start from day one, NEVER let the children in YOUR bedroom. First of all that is where the guns should be from now on. Unless you have a safe somewhere else. MOVE it to your bedroom. You and your wife NEED your own space and so does your child. Even after they knock on your door they should never be allowed in the bedroom. I'm kinda funny about the whole bedroom thing, but you'll thank me later.

Take as many pictures as you can. You'll thank yourself later. Try to take one picture from the exact same spot/angle/time of day every day for the first year or 2 or 3 if you can keep it up. You will be amazed at the changes, even over 24 hours in some months. Date stamp these pictures so you can keep them in order.

Have fun.
Link Posted: 1/7/2003 8:51:43 AM EDT
Watch out for mowers!!!

My son just turned 2 a few days ago.  Last spring I was outside mowing the grass and, when I was finish, put it to the side of the deck.  A few minutes later my wife came out with my son and let him walk/crawl around in the grass.  We started talking and heard the scream of all screams.

He went straight to the mower and was looking it over and laid his hand on the engine.  The burns were no where near searious but still made the next two days a living hell!
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