In terms of labor and birth, 99.9% of the focus is understood on mother-to-be. After all, she is the one who makes the majority of the hard implant during birth.
But it is worth giving the least possible consideration to the birth partner who will be right on her side. They are a vital but often overcrowded basket on the machine.
Whether it's boyfriend, girlfriend, husband, wife, parent, sibling, best friend or Janine from no. 12 who collect your online deliveries when you are out, this person will have a key role in the procedures.
From the first contraction to the child who comes safely into the world, the birth partner is there to provide both practical and emotional support during the work.
As such, the birth partner carries many different hats. They are the planner, the implementator, the cheerleader, the translator, the mate, the handheld and the back massage.
As a two-year-old birthman veteran himself, there's a good bit I've learned – and too much I've seen – along the way. So, to be the perfect birth partner, you need:
Do your research and know your stuff. Get to know the birth plan, fill the car with gasoline, find out where to park, know where to go to the hospital etc.
Do not panic
Try to keep calm. You can scream inside, but do not let it show on the outside. Lost your head will not help with the situation.
Be there for her
Your role is to do everything and everything she asks for you. Do not blame or complain, just crack and do it with a soothing smile.
Think what you're saying
This is not time for joke, wisecracks or stories about Steve from Accounting. Keep encouraging and support. If you do not know what to say, be quiet.
Remember the bags
In the panic that goes out of the house and to the hospital, make sure you pick up the hospital bags at the front door.
Talk about hospital bags, let me expand something. I use the majority because making separate bags for each person (you, mom and baby) makes it easier to find what you are looking for while in the hospital.
Let's assume that moms and children's bags have been packed, so we can forget about food bags, nipple cream and wax hassel and focus instead on the bag of the birth partner.
You are unlikely to know how long you will be at the hospital, so it's best to take everything you think you just need to be on the safe side. This is by no means definitely, but it covers the essentials:
First, you need yours cellular phone and charger. It probably says today and age, but it's worth spelling it out, without it, how are you going to do late night phone calls to close family, send the obligatory "welcome to the world" update on Facebook or get an "in labor selfie "?
While we are on the subject of photos, and assuming that is what has been agreed with mom-to-be, you are probably the unofficial photographer and videographer who captures that wonderful experience. For most, the above-mentioned camera will be on the phone, but there may be another kit like a digital camera, camcorder or handheld camera you have to remember.
Then you need money. You may be in a situation where you have to quickly turn to the shops to buy something that has been forgotten or buy a much needed coffee when the 36th working hours meet. Do not just take a card. Make sure you have plenty of it reserve change, especially when it comes to paying at the hospital to the hospital parking.
Depending on the hospital and situation you can stop staying the night. Take an extra pair clothes (hoodie, t-shirt, pants, socks and boxers) and your own toiletries (toothbrush, toothpaste, deodorant, contact lenses, etc.) only if needed. As you are likely to sleep in an uncomfortable chair, a travel pillow and felt are also useful additions.
Entertainment is also a good idea, but make sure it's not intrusive. Your primary role is a support, but there is also a lot of rest and hanging around. It could be a book, a newspaper or a crossword word, or alternatively something on your phone like a games, music or TV shows. If it's later, remember yours headphones And keep in mind that hospitals are famous Wi-Fi black spots, so download everything in advance.
Finally you want to pack a little food and drinks. I'm not talking about a full picnic or a three-course dinner, but just a little as you quietly can put together if needed. It is unlikely you will get any of the hospital and cafes are only open at some hours, so it's best to bring something.
What do you think is the perfect birth partner? What types of items would you recommend for the birth partner's hospital bag?
Limitation of Liability: This post is sponsored by Asda.