For those of you who read my recent post on early pregnancy symptoms, you may be excused for thinking that the first trimester is defined by months of mood swings, morning sickness and mandatory foot massages.
But I’m pleased to report that there are in fact a wealth of widely unreported and largely unexpected perks of being a dad-to-be during the first three months of pregnancy, 10 of which I will exclusively share with you now.
DISCLAIMER: Every pregnancy is different, and perhaps I’ve just been extremely lucky (so far), so don’t be disappointed if you don’t experience each and every one of these pregnancy benefits right away. No doubt you will discover many more unique perks of your own!
1. Manliness confirmed – having never had children before, there is nothing that makes you feel more manly than knowing that you’re going to be a father (and of course that your little swimmers are doing their job, as nature intended)!
2. Drinking for two –during the first three months of pregnancy, you and your significant other will be doing everything you can to hide the fact that you are pregnant until you’re ready to announce your happy news to the world. So while she struggles to hide the fact that she’s off booze, be prepared to down her unwanted alcoholic beverage when nobody’s watching or, to make the charade even more believable, proceed to getting unreasonably drunk yourself, just so she can proffer the excuse, “I think I need to take this one home.”
3. Free taxi service –while we’re on the subject of alcohol abstinence during pregnancy, no more will you need to slum it on public transport or indulge in expensive taxis to and from social gatherings, if your pregnant partner is happy (as mine is) to act as the designated driver on every night out. Just be sure to leave a generous tip!
4. Married to a glamour model – maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow, but there will come a time in every pregnancy where you realise that your other half’s ‘assets’ have seemingly doubled in size overnight, as her breasts enlarge in preparation for the breastfeeding bonanza to come. But as I’ve previously warned, at the early stages they are to be looked at but rarely touched! #tender
5. Two weeks’ extra holiday from work – now I know that paternity leave (an average of two weeks for new dads in the UK) is BY NO MEANS a holiday, but that doesn’t take away from the fact that this year, you will have at least an extra two weeks out of the office. Enjoy planning a few extra trips away for you and the missus before the baby’s arrival, for these will be the last holidays for at least 20 years as just the two of you. Just be sure to be extra patient with any parents dealing with crying babies on your flight…that’ll be you in the not too distant future.
6. Food, glorious food – as I’ve mentioned previously, pregnancy cravings can be a wonderful experience for expectant dads, especially if your partner (like mine) is craving all of your favourite treats. Prepare for a fridge bursting at the seams with weird and wonderful foodstuffs, many of which you might not have seen or tasted since the late 90s, as her nostalgic belly craves all of her old favourites. But be warned, this perk can turn into a pain, if her morning sickness puts her off food altogether.
7. Nothing like a good clear out – ever since my (now) wife moved in with me three years ago, our spare room has been filled to the brim with her ‘stuff’; all essential items that cannot be thrown away, recycled or sold, apparently. With a new tiny flatmate soon to move into said room though, she finally has a reason for a good and decisive clear out. The OCD part of my soul is jumping for joy, let me tell you, although the prospect of filling it up again with a bus load of baby paraphernalia is, frankly, rather terrifying.
8. Sweet dreams are made of these – as the process of growing a baby zaps your partners’ energy to dangerously low levels, she (and you) will almost certainly be heading to bed hours before your usual nap time. While a shock to the system initially, after a week or two you will grow to love those extra couple of hours of sleep as they leave you well-rested and refreshed for the day ahead. Make the most of these long restful nights while you can before the new baby’s nightly feeds throw your body clock into meltdown.
9. Netflix & Chill – now, I’m showing my age here with this specific reference because, NO, I’m not referring to the #NetflixandChill currently being bandied around by the youth of today. Rather, during the first trimester and beyond, your tired and pregnant other half will almost certainly be cutting back on going out, preferring to spend the evening relaxing in her PJs on the sofa instead – a great opportunity for you both to catch up on all the best box sets on Netflix that you’ve missed.
10. How nice it is to be needed – in the modern world, we all live increasingly independent lives, while the traditional husband/wife roles have rightly merged to become a partnership of equals, with your own incomes and the sharing of household duties. With this in mind, there is something lovely about this time living with a pregnant partner, who depends on your love and support now, more than ever. Having this unique bond with another person, which seems to grow more every day, feels pretty special to me.
Happy Friday everyone! 31 weeks and 5 days left to go…
So, how many of the top 10 have you benefited from so far? Are there any other perks that you have experienced yourself? Please do pass on your feedback and share your own stories in the comments section below!
FEATURED AS BLOG OF THE WEEK ON MOTHERHOOD: THE REAL DEAL’S #COOLMUMCLUB LINKY!