A different perspective

It’s something that Kate and I are doing together, but we’re clearly having very different experiences. I don’t think we’ve been so divergent since that time we saw Bowling For Columbine. But this time Marilyn Manson isn’t making a guest appearance.

We’re both caring for Harriet, but due to anatomical differences, we have different roles. Kate handles all of the feeding, while we share the playtime, and I do most of the settling.

Currently the breakdown in hours is something like this:

  • Sleeping – 14 hours
  • Feeding – 5 hours (including mid-feed nappy change)
  • Settling – 4 hours (including bath-time)
  • Play – 1 hour

There’s no play at night-time, and happily she requires minimal settling after midnight, so my participation is generally limited to civilised hours. However, Kate is involved 24/7.

The other aspect is that I’m involved to this level for only these weeks before I return to full-time work, while Kate is looking at doing this for months and months into the future. I’m hoping that at the six-week mark, when I go back to work, the most dependent and most unsettled parts of Harriet’s early life are behind us.

But we are living different lives here, despite spending all our hours together. I guess I wasn’t expecting that.

4 thoughts on “A different perspective”

  1. Deepti and I definitely still go through that. I feel guilty I can’t do more for N, to help Deepti. There’s a lot of standing around and looking when you’re a dad.

  2. It’s also that I seem to be having a better time of it than Kate. Despite being able to watch the TV or read a book during feeding, the relentless schedule and fact that often Harriet’s cries are those of hunger and can be sated only by Kate – I think these take a toll. It doesn’t overcome the fact that apparently 10 minutes spent feeding is much more pleasant than 10 minutes spent settling.

  3. Plus feeding is exhausting from a calorie point of view yet. I hope you have realised that another vital Dad role is to provide carbs. Lots of carbs :)

    Keep your eye on the 6 week mark. And then 12 weeks. It gets so much better at 12 weeks, it’s ridiculous.

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