Supporting Postpartum for Men and Avoiding Maternal Gatekeeping
The fatherhood postpartum experience can be challenging, but it’s often overlooked. Men also feel stress and anxiety about the changes that happen with the arrival of a new baby in the family. In addition, they have to deal with challenges like getting time to bond with the baby, feeling like they are not needed and dealing with others who don't understand. As a mother, it can feel like way too much to worry about in postpartum to care about your partner's well-being. However, opening up to conversations around these topics with your partner could be a matter of saving your relationship and addressing your fears before they become intense.
Hear how to save your relationship postpartum before it takes the wrong turn in this episode of Mamas in Training!
Why We Need to Talk More About Male Postpartum
When we first think of motherhood and pregnancy, there are many questions to ask ourselves and others. There are questions about the nursery, birth, and postpartum, but there may be one question that you forgot to ask... Someone who is very important in the equation. Your partner! And the question is, how are THEY feeling?
We often get swept up in the massive to-do list and how we’re physically feeling that we forget to ask our partners what they might be going through. Most of the time, they end up taking a back seat because they are in the support zone. They get into a protector mode where they don’t dare talk about their feelings and instead bury them, causing more trouble in the end.
Eli Weinstein, a mental health and licensed clinical social work therapist, is on the show today to give us the partner's perspective. He himself suffered postpartum from an intense anxiety attack and is here to teach you how to protect your partner from experiencing the same thing!
Learn how you can reach out to your partner and start a conversation about how they are feeling, as well as great tips for avoiding maternal gatekeeping or making your partner feel like the third wheel during postpartum.
About Eli Weinstein
Eli is not only a therapist, but he’s also a dad who personally experienced a severe panic attack two months postpartum. He gives us the tools to support our partners and make sure their experience is recognized during our journey so that they can remain both physically and mentally healthy. Eli also has a podcast known as The Dude Therapist, where he shares openly about his own experiences that have encouraged him to support others through anxiety issues, parenting, relationship, and more.
Eli shares his journey with infertility and IVF in the episode as well as how he navigated in supporting his wife and managing the emotions that came with postpartum. The fear of not being able to be a parent was eminent, especially after their first IVF had failed. Being a dad was a dream come true for him, and he loves his sweet spot, “baby naps.” He’s looking forward to it again, as his wife is pregnant with their second baby. He’s also much more prepared now that he knows what to expect. To Eli, fatherhood is a journey of being able to pass on values and it teaches you values, perspective, and patience. Listen to the latest episode, where Eli chatted with Jessica.
Outline of the episode:
- [02:26] Eli Weinstein on postpartum for men
- [03:43] Hyper-focused; lessons that Eli learned from his postpartum panic attack
- [06:36] Emotions that he should have dealt with to avoid the panic attack
- [10:24] How you can support your partner through postpartum
- [12:50] Try not to fix it, just be with the emotions to process them
- [14:54] What Eli would have done differently to prepare for his first postpartum
- [18:56] How you can help your partner to step out and seek help
- [23:33] Compassion fatigue; getting the perspective from a non-biased party
- [25:56] Postpartum for Men; Ways to enhance inclusion, so our partners don’t feel like a third wheel.
- [33:31] Mental health can show up differently; know what your partner is going through
- [37:52] If you’re struggling, you’re not alone and don’t go through it alone, reach out and get help
FOLLOW on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/mamasintrainingpod/
WRITE a Review: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/id1474667560?mt=2&ls=1
JOIN our Facebook Community: https://urlgeni.us/facebook/mamasintrainingpod