My daughter is 5 months old and my husband has not bonded with her at all. After six years of marriage, he feels like our relationship is gone because of the baby. He tells me he's not ready to be a father, and he seems very depressed. I've told him he needs to get help or I'll leave. What else can I do? Please help.
Please don't threaten him that way. I can totally relate to him. I am a father of a 2 month old baby and I'm suffering from depression too. The relationship with the mother is strained and the romance has faded. I'm battling myself each day trying to be a good dad and a loving husband and it's all I can do to tick off the boxes of what's required of me. Friends told me that I will be a loving dad when I hold the newborn in my arms. That did not happen. I checked with some other fathers too. Many of them whose kids are 3 or 4 year old now. Truth of the matter is, and I'm glad that they were honest, men don't bond with baby as easily as mothers do. Some don't even like carrying their own children. It's not till the child turn one or two that they start to interact with them. Lots of time, we men don't have an avenue to speak up on this topic because of society's expectation of us. So we suffer in silence. Your husband isn't the only one but I can only hope that he hangs in there to try. I was honest about my feelings to my wife and while I know she's disappointed, I'm glad she hasn't added more ill sentiments by fighting me. On my part I will keep trying to do what's right and expected of me and in time feel the joy of parenthood. Though admittedly, that feeling may never come. Most men aren't honest with their wives cos they don't want to disappoint them, but amongst guys only feedback session, these truths surfaces. I hope all will go well with you and your husband. If he needs someone to talk to, can always contact me.Read more
To be honest you have to take your husband's words seriously even though it can sound disappointing to a new mum as mums are generally finds it easier to bond with their babies compared to their spouse. There are also cases where even some new mums can't enjoy bonding with their baby for unknown reasons and yes, it can be taboo for admitting that. I am sure your husband also do not want to supress his true feelings to you. He might be overwhelmed with his new identity and set of responsibilities and commitment to the family. You have to balance it out by showing him some concern from time to time without showing that baby comes first. Unless its a case of bad marriage or abuse, remember our spouse do come first, give him more time to adjust since your baby is only 5 months old. My husband was only more interactive our son when he talks and walks. He finds that baby stage is "boring" as they can't talk, walk and only wanted to cry and sleep. But I also try my best to cater my attention by breastfeeding my then baby and also continue intimacy with husband which does help the marriage in some way.Read more
You can meet a psychologist if talks and discussions between your husband and you haven't helped him. I guess, we always know and discuss postpartum depression in women, but hardly think that men (though they don't deliver physically) can also suffer from it. I think, your husband is feeling quite burdened mentally with the birth of the child thinking that he has now got a huge responsibility to fill as a father. Probably, when you concieved, and carried the baby, he did not feel that because he couldn't see the baby. He did not know but may be was not ready for this new role. I suggest, you should see a counsellor or a psychologist who can ease out his fears, and show him the brighter side. I know it must be tough for you to see your husband attitude and not feeling any attachment for the baby but I think all you need is give him little time.Read more
Agree with the mummies above. Why are you considering leaving? It's not like he is ignoring you & the baby nor is he having an affair. As a wife, I feel that you should be supporting him rather than threathening him since you said he looks depressed. If he says that he has bonded with your daughter, get him involve with your daughter more frequently during each activity that you do such as bathing, feeding and play time. Or, you could follow the concept of the Korean Reality TV show "Return of the Superman". Leave your daughter with your husband and you go out to relax. It will help the bonding, and Lee Hwi Jae even admitted that it was only after he was alone with his twins did he actually bonded with his sons.Read more
Ma'am I think you have to be calm at this moment. Leaving your husband is not a solution....where u know that he is depressed. You need to deal with this situation in a very smart way...many a times male are not mature enough to understand and adjust the atmosphere which comes with baby....a little mess in the bedroom, lack of quality time which u used to share makes them unhappy and confused.Here you should make him feel normal...try to talk to him about your experiences wid your baby....Take care of his daily chores as before....etc....these things can make him feel secure and help him to bond with you and your baby.Also u can take help of a counsellor.Read more
Leaving is never the solution to any problem. What if one day it was your daughter with the problem, would you choose to leave too? You need to learn how to handle setbacks as a family and learn to stick together although it can be hard. Sit down for a talk first. There must be a reason why he is feeling this way. Have you been neglecting him? Maybe it's time to allocate a day just to be with him and let someone else take care of the baby instead. When a baby comes along it's very easy to dedicate all of your time to her.Read more
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Try to make efforts on how to help the father and daugther bond together instead of giving up. I think it is also due to he is feeling being neglected by the wife after the baby is here. Try to spend some personal time with your husband instead of fully focusing on baby.
Communication is very important speak to him don't give up your relationship easily. Maybe you put to much attention on baby? Try to have couple life like before. Bring baby to your own mom to look after once a week, you and him have personal space.