Father's First Steps—dads only antenatal classes 

Mater Mothers offers expectant fathers a chance to give their pregnant partners a night off and sign up for male-only antenatal classes held at the local pub. 

The monthly Father’s First Steps classes, held at The Brewhouse on Annerley Road, were introduced to offer dads-to-be a chance to get together with the boys and expand on the information learned during Mater’s antenatal classes. 

Hosted by Mater Midwife Eira Moroney, the classes have already proven a hit with dads. 

“For a lot of guys parenthood doesn’t become real until the baby’s arrived and that’s absolutely okay. 

“I usually start by asking the dads what they want to know and we go from there; sometimes there are things they want to know more about, but they won’t ask those questions in front of their partners.

“This way, it’s just the guys and me—although they seem to forget pretty quickly that I’m a woman and just ask whatever they want to know.

“They also have the option of having a beer if they want as well as some hot chips, so it’s very man-focused and relaxed!” 

Mater’s Father’s First Steps class is a good opportunity to: 

  • talk about any issues or things that are on your mind related to becoming a dad;
  • look at your job as a parent and what you expect of yourself and your partner;
  • learn more tips on how to settle and care for your baby in the early days, wrapping and bathing etc;
  • compare thoughts and experiences with other expectant dads;
  • find out why it’s good to interact with your baby and be involved in your baby’s care right from the beginning; 
  • discuss how important you are to your baby and their brain development and what can be done to help form and develop that relationship;
  • talk about safety in the home and the car; 
  • learn how to best support your partner —during birth and breastfeeding and talk about issues such as sex, the effects of having a baby on your relationship, postnatal depression and financial pressures;
  • find out what community support is available once you go home.

With more than 20 years’ experience teaching antenatal classes, Eira has heard most questions, but admits she’s still surprised every now and then. 

“They do surprise me occasionally, however I’ve heard a lot of different questions and if I’m ever unsure on a topic I will research and follow up with that dad personally.

“These classes don’t replace the traditional couples classes, they’re more of an additional resource for men. They can have a drink, something to eat and a bit of a laugh with other dads-to-be.”

To find out more, or to book into a class, please phone Mater Mothers on 07 3163 8847.

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