My husband and I went through pre-marital counseling with a couple from our church before we got married. There were lots of books available with questions and topics to discuss before tying the knot, helpful tools to get you talking about important things and expectations so you have less unpleasant surprises after marriage.
I made some weak attempts to see if there were similar books for expectant parents, but an interaction with a client helped me to realize that I could try to tap into my reader base.
So, gentle readers: What are important things that Steve and I should discuss before the baby arrives?
You can answer this whether or not you have personal experience being a parent. After all, I certainly don’t have any parenting experience, but I’ve already put together a short list of topics which is by NO means exhaustive:
- Estate/will-type topics: When should we go about making wills? Who should be the child’s guardian if we die?
- Responsibilities: Do I expect Steve to get up in the middle of the night? How often and in what ways will Steve help?
- Gear: Disposable or cloth diapers; if cloth, wash them ourselves or use a service? What gear do we think is essential? Heck, what gear do parents need?
- Sleeping philosophies: Swaddle or no? Schedule or no?
I understand that some of these things we can’t answer until we are actually parents and get to know the unique personality of our baby, but we can at least clear the air and get some expectations out there… or at least see the extent of our ignorance and make some moves towards becoming more knowledgeable.
Thanks in advance for your help! Please feel free to include both general topics as well as specific questions.
And if you’ve read a good parenting/newborn-related book and would like to recommend it, please provide a mini-review/summary as well!