You are truly ecstatic about the impending birth of your baby. But, deep down, you are also grappling with fears regarding your new status as a father. Understandably, you are not quite comfortable discussing these issues with anyone—not even your partner. Actually, this is quite normal. It might help you to identify and evaluate your fears, and take steps to overcome or deal with them.

Financial anxiety: This is one of the most common of fears associated with fatherhood. Childbirth means more than an additional member in the family. In most households, it also means that the dad will now be the sole breadwinner. Reviewing your budget plans is one way you can overcome this fear.

Fear of mortality: There is nothing like the birth of a baby to bring home the fact of one’s own mortality. Suddenly, the realization sinks in that you are not as invincible as you used to believe. This awareness brings with it a growing sense of responsibility. Your family needs you and you cannot take your life as granted any longer.

Relationship insecurity: You may have always thought your partner loved you more than anyone else in the world. Now suddenly you find that there is danger of your special position being usurped by the baby. You also realize that your spouse shares a bond with the baby—one that you are not sure you would be able to equal. It is important for you to face your doubts and come towards an understanding that bringing up a baby is a joint responsibility between both parents. The sad fact for dad is that mom will likely no longer dote on you by making you breakfast or buying your clothes, or at least not as often. And the baby will come before time with you and even your lovemaking.

And, in the short run, for all your sacrifice, you’ll likely only get to hear, “I want mommy.” You have to learn not to take this personally and realize that your big role, at least from what you can discern, in their life will only start to really form after about two years of age.

Commitment anxiety: Perhaps at the back of your mind you’ve always harbored the idea that if things got really bad with your spouse, you could always consider running away. Those thoughts might be fleeting and non at all serious. However, with a baby on the way, there is no more “running away.” The baby is 24/7/365 for the rest of your life. That’s a good thing, but it is also a major change in how you view your independence.

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