Don't Forget That He Will Be A Dad
One of my favorite movies of all time is The Lion King. I know it’s a “kids” movie, but guess what; I love kids movies. I don’t know how many times I’ve watched the movie, but I do know that I can quote the majority of the lines and all of the song lyrics. The story is about a little lion, Simba, who was destined to be king. At first Simba was excited and could not wait to be king. Then his father, King Mufasa, was killed and his Uncle Scar (Mufasa’s brother) convinced him that it was all his fault. This caused Simba to run away from home as a child. He left his mother, other family members, and best friend Nala, and went to a faraway land where he could hide from his calling to be king, even though he once couldn’t wait for it. He grew up, became an adult, and then he ran back into Nala while roaming around in the wilderness. Although he saw himself as a grown-up lion, when she saw him, she saw him as the king, the highest authority in the jungle. She didn’t know why he had run away all those years ago, or what he was hiding from. All she knew was that he did not see himself the way she saw him. She eventually helped him rediscover his full potential, face his fears, and return home to take his place as king!
Going through this infertility journey, I discovered that my husband was a lot like Simba. For a time, he was hiding the fact that he really wanted to be a father because he was afraid that he wouldn’t be a “good” one. He could not see himself being a dad because he was not raised by his. After he opened up to me about these feelings, I was able to encourage him by expressing that I can tell he will be a good father by how he takes care of me and handles all of his responsibilities. I assured him that I have no doubt about it. I saw him as the highest authority in our home, a father, and my husband, and I made sure he knew it. Once he got over that hurdle, we had various other hurdles in our journey. Just when we started to get excited, we would get another let-down. We were on an emotional rollercoaster, but at least we were together. I knew how I felt, but I wondered what he was thinking. Even though I saw him break down and cry a few times during our losses, he demonstrated such strength and unshakable faith, which comforted me and provided stability when my feelings wavered. I learned that as you pursue motherhood, you can’t forget that while you will be a mom, your man will be a dad. Therefore, you can’t discount his feelings or forget that he is also going through this journey as well. I taught myself to not get easily offended by him during this time, because men express emotions differently than women. It is vitally important that you understand this and work with your man, not against him, as you pursue parenthood together.
Here are ways you can strengthen your union during these challenging times:
· Communicate with each other about your feelings.
· Compliment him for things he is doing well.
· Work with your man, not against him, as you pursue parenthood together.
· Try not to nag about little things.
· Choose your battles. Everything is not worth creating drama over.
· Take a vacation or weekend getaway.
· Have sex when he wants it. This will help him relieve stress.
· Surprise him by getting dressed up for him and making him a nice dinner.
· Give him space to enjoy the activities he loves when he needs it.
These are just some of the ways I tried to uplift and encourage my husband during our journey to bringing a baby home. After 4 transfers and 8 years of disappointments, we did just that. My husband, who is a gamer, unlocked the achievement of Fatherhood.
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