A week to some dads may be enough but to me its just not enough time. A week can fly by so quick and once your back to work you miss so much!
If I go back to when we were expecting Z, I was on the sick for 6 months so I got to spend those all important days with him and watch him grow, I was there to help change nappies, clean the house, cook meals and bath times. Z loved sleeping on my chest and cuddles, I was with him 24 hours a day. The only thing I couldn’t help with was feeding as the missus was breast feeding so i needed to do everything else to help bond with Z.
The relationship me and Z have now (He’s 3) is unreal, he is a daddy’s boy, which is strange as a lot people say boys tend to go to mammy! I’m not complaining though, Z loves me (well he should I am his dad after all) but I really do believe this is because I spent so much time with him when he was so little.
If I wasn’t on the sick at the time things may have been a lot different – as the job I was in meant i worked ever changing shifts. So when i worked a night i would have been in bed all day.
Fast forwarding to the present day; we now have another new born. well he’s 3 weeks old now and i’m finding bonding with him very hard. Now I know every baby is different; but i have tried relaxing with him on my chest, skin to skin, sometimes he’ll sleep but thats only after he has been fed. I feel like i just cant comfort him like i could with Z.
Baby bear (his name is Elijah but this was the nickname Z gave him from 3 months pregnant) is all about mam – I am blaming this on me only having a weeks paternity. I could have took more but doing so would have meant that I would have to go onto statutory pay and with already taking a big pay cut at work this year, it just wasn’t feasible.
What is a week really, especially at that age, babies don’t do much apart from sleep so there isn’t much I could have done, and with my new job I finish at 5:15 but by the time I get in and cook tea its bed time and I still don’t have enough time with Bear, weekends are my time but we all know how quick they go.
Now there is a way you can share maternity/paternity leave over the year, but to be honest for us that wouldn’t work due to Steph breastfeeding Z for 8 months and intends to do this with Elijah too, so for us this was a no go. see HERE for more details.
Its a unfair world and birth/parenthood is mainly focused upon mothers. It should be a case of where I can take 2 months off for example, maybe not that long but anything over a week without loosing an arm and leg in pay will be beneficial to bonding with your new born. It hurts it really does, I know things will probably change as he gets older but for now he is all about mam.
Whats your thoughts on this? Either a mothers or Fathers point of view, I would love to hear!