The love and care you can provide as a Dad can make a huge difference to your baby’s health and development. The birth of a premature or sick baby can be a challenging time for everyone involved. Being a Dad in a neonatal unit is a tough job and one that sometimes can feel unrecognised. You may be experiencing a whole range of emotions such as anger, sadness, grief and guilt, but rest assured you are not alone in these feelings. Having a baby in a hospital is probably not how you imagined becoming a dad.
Below are some resources to help with these concerns and if you feel like speaking to a fellow parent who has been through this journey Dads can also contact our 24 hr Parent Support Line – 1300 697 736.
Meet Sam Blyth – Veteran Dad and Peer Support Volunteer
I’ve been an active volunteer for 3 months. I participate in a weekly Dads group at the Royal Women’s Hospital NICU in Parkville, Melbourne. Both of my children were born pre term and spent time in NICU. I wanted to use the experience to help families that are going through this challenging time. Read more…
Click the links below for further tips and practical information including
What about Dads?
article by Dr Carol Newnham for Dads.
Surviving the NICU/SCN
handy tips for when your baby is in the hospital.
LLTF Smartphone Apps to help you in the NICU/SCN
NICU words and Premature Baby Journal.
a method of skin-to-skin contact to promote parent/infant bonding especially for premature babies.
More parent stories
stories from parents real life experiences with their premature children.
Tips for Family and Friends
in the hospital mums and babies are often the centres of attention. But this is a tough time for dads, too, both physically and emotionally. Family and friends may also be worried about the baby, and are often anxious to know how they can help without getting in the way.
Always remember you are a valuable member of the team
Other useful links and resources for Dads on the web
Becoming a Father: 24-Hour Cotside Assistance – The Baby Manual
This booklet has been designed to provide misinformation to new fathers about their newborn baby and his/her needs. Developed by Centacare and available through MENGAGE.
SMS4dads – A project to keep in touch with dads before and after the birth through their mobile phones. The idea is to send text messages with tips, information and links to other services for new dads. The tips in the texts will help a dad connect with his baby but they will also help him be a support for his partner, the mum.
Pillars of Strength
Providing Timeout & Support to Dads so they can support their families
Resource from Beyond Blue that follows a group of new dads on their journey into fatherhood for a four-part web series, Dadvice.
24/7 phone counselling
Man Therapy – a website by Beyond Blue
Male-focused depression and anxiety resource
Help with Anxiety and Depression
THE NICU BEARD CLUB
Dads join forces to support other Dads with a baby in Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU).
One Blokes Mission to Save the Aussie Men
R U OK?
R U OK?’s vision is a world where we’re all connected and are protected from suicide.