I was recently featured in an article by Babygaga titled, 15 Mom-to-Mom Confessions about Pregnancy, and while it was such a great, on-point article, it made me think more about pregnancy from a different perspective: from the husband's point-of-view.
You see, for obvious reasons, the mom gets all the attention during pregnancy, and the baby gets all of it after birth. This is typically how it goes. So, where does the dad fit into all this? To be honest and fair, he actually doesn't.
Which is why you should get on your knees and thank him...
You see, we as women get all the credit for making these babies, and we damn well should. Our bodies change and sometimes never change back, we have to carry around an extra 30+ pounds while still maintaining our day-to-day routine, we have to go through the pains of childbirth and the healing that comes after, and then many of us are expected to return to work as early as six-weeks after all this takes place. Yes, we deserve a medal, the World on a silver platter, and so much more.
But, what about the man who stands by your side during all this? What about your husband/boyfriend/partner who rubs those tired feet, and soothes that aching back? What about the man who provides so much and gets back so little? What does he get? If you're my husband, you get nothing, and for that, I owe you. Big time.
I know every pregnancy story is different and I know every experience is not the same, but for argument sake, let's say you had the dream husband I had during my pregnancy.
For all you newly pregnant mamas and papas (or just for the ones who already experienced this wonderful life-changing event) I give you the five phases of pregnancy and why your husband deserves a BJ... or two.
The Constant Complaining Phase
"Ugh, I just want one more drink."
"How the hell did I gain 5 pounds already?"
"I feel so fucking sick?"
"You're tired? Oh, right! You have NO idea how tired I am!"
I don't really need to say more about this phase, so just give him the damn BJ. Everything is starting to change and you yourself are changing as well. I don't want to say that most women are unbearable at this stage, but I know for me there were a lot of tears and yelling. To be honest, I literally have no idea what made me so sad or caused me so much anger when the baby was about the size of a pea. Also, how the hell did I gain five pounds just 5 days after taking the pregnancy test? Clearly, it was my husband's fault.
The Neediness and Clinginess Phase
You feel weird all over, your body is starting to feel like it's been invaded, and the last thing you want to feel is left out. The problem is, there are many things you cannot do and that is sometimes a hard reality to bite. You don't want to sit in bars because it reminds you of a life once lived, you can't do anything too wild aside from maybe a brisk walk or easy bike ride, and your clothes start to feel a little tighter than usual, so you really don't even want to leave the house.
So, your husband should completely understand why you cry when he leaves for work, or why you creepily stare at him as he sleeps, right? Wrong. He has no fucking clue what is going on in that psycho, baby-invaded mind, so cut the man some slack, okay? Don't make him binge watch Dowton Abby just because YOU like it, and don't yell at him for wanting some alone time after a long day at work. He doesn't need to hear for the umpteenth time that your boobs hurt and that you feel fat. Give him a break, and when he comes home, welcome him back with a nice BJ.
The Never Satisfied Phase
Go away! No, wait come back! Why are you suffocating me? Why are you ignoring me?
Yes, this and the next phase sort of go hand-in-hand but it's basically right at the beginning of the second trimester and those hormones go into an uncontrollable roller coaster of emotions. You yell at your husband for going out with his friends to watch the big game, but get mad when he sits too close to you on the couch. He makes you your favorite meal of ice cream and fudge but forgets the nuts, so you vow to kill him in his sleep since he seems to be the only one getting sleep anyways and doesn't really deserve it... Totally normal said no one ever.
It's a lose-lose for the hubs, so yes, he deserves a BJ. You can eat your ice cream after.
The "You don't know what I'm going through!" Phase
Truthfully, no husband will EVER understand pregnancy, and most likely it's because they could never handle it. But, they do not need to be punished for it either. It's not their faults they have balls instead of ovaries, so stop blaming the human design on this particular human. Seriously, stop.
This phase normally comes after the honeymoon period of pregnancy ends and the no-sleep cycle comes into full effect (Yes, there is a rare unicorn-stage-of-pregnancy where you actually feel good, you start to glow, and people treat you like a fucking princess. It ends, though. Rather abruptly.) You curse him for not knowing what it's like to be kicked from the inside all night, while he snores soundly next to you. You yell at him for being able to climb the stairs without needing a break or being able to scratch his feet without difficulty breathing or accidently releasing some wind. You may even blame him entirely for making you have this baby, even though the idea was really yours and he still isn't 100% sure why you both decided to do this... But, it's not his fault. Stop yelling at him and use your mouth for something a little more productive.
The Baby-is-here Phase
The baby is here and now no one cares about you or your husband. No one cares that your body feels like it's been hit by a bus, or that you can't sneeze or even breath without peeing your pants. No one cares that you haven't slept, showered, or eaten a hot meal in days or weeks and that you probably won't for the next 3 months. And what's even worse, your husband will probably get the brunt of it.
He has probably returned to work just a mere few days after welcoming his new baby into the world, and while you get to (hopefully) nap while the baby does, he's crunching numbers, getting yelled at by his boss, waiting on impatient customers, or having to manage a group of co-workers half his age. What's next? He walks in the once welcoming front door after his long day to you basically throwing the baby at him so you can shower and brush your teeth for the first time and get some "me time". What does he get? He gets the cranky baby during witching hour, which gives him the typical my-baby-hates-me complex, followed by gobbling down some meal you threw together all the while telling you how much he loves green mush and slimy meat. Maybe you should be the one doing the gobbling, my lady friend.
Get down, ladies.
So, ladies get down on those swollen ankles, pull yourself out of your exhausted zombie-like trance, and put on your best lip gloss (even chapstick will work). Let those hormones bring out your inner-teenager and get it on like you're drunk and in your 20's again (hopefully, none of you are actually drunk). Chances are, it's been so long it won't last longer than it takes to finish reading this sentence and you can go back to crying over the recent Apple commercial. Even if it's once a month, or once the entire pregnancy, your husband deserves this and trust me, he's earned it.