Im not here necessarily for the baby but more specifically for the wife. She obviously feels somewhat responsible for his lack of weight gain. She also feels constrained with her new lack of mobility. She feels sore from her new feeding role. She feels tired...no...exhausted. She doesnt feel like herself in this new role. She feels like a milkcow because its constant feeding and not much else. And thats just the simple version. Many of these I can sympathize with because I was very much the sole provider for over 2 years out of my oldest sons life. From 7 months to about 3 years I was mom and dad for him. I remember the things I did to make life better. I have ideas of how things probably need to be now.
For example, I believe our/her diet could improve. Right now her cravings are for very sweet and processed things. Walking the baby 2-3 times a day would be great stimulation for mom and baby. It would also help get her OUT of this box. Playing with and stimulating the baby with sounds, touch, movement and sights will improve development. I also think this could help mom feel less like a milk cow and more like a ?teacher,developer, parent?.
All of that sounds simple to communicate however, I know that its not that simple. I can see when i make suggestions that theres a voice in her head saying things like "let me twist your nipples for 20 minutes every 2 hours!" and "you try being a mom at his point dumbass!!" . Throw in a little post-partem and trying to navigate this path between motivation and support from becoming annoying and shutdown becomes harder than Ironman. I help as much as possible, I do all the diapers, house cleaning, getting food, I wake up with her every feeding and Ill change the diaper, burp him and put him back to sleep. I take him on walks and stimulate him as much as I can....but i also work...so I am not always going to be here. We are also starting to pump so that I can feed him bottles. I really believe that she will benefit from getting out more, eating better and working more on his development and being less passive. I dont think I have a problem with support but its the motivation thing that has me in a bind. So heres some of my questions to the experts:
1) am I expecting too much too soon?
2) will her nipples/boobs get used to the frequency of feeding so theyre not sore all the time?
3) what are some guidelines of what NOT to say and do.
4) how do you change the opinion of what 'milk cow' means without sounding like a sappy cheerleader. I need a better term than 'milk cow' that sounds more positive. Something that gives its true significance to the well-being of the child.
5) any advice that helps me not sound like the clueless male that I am.
"WHEW...I really regret that workout!"..............Noone