5 Reasons Why Good Friends Are Critical for New Fathers

I recently read a research article that said:

20% of expectant and new fathers did not have 4 people in their lives they could confide in.   

That’s a significant statistic!  2 out of every 10 new Dads have limited support systems at a time in their lives when they’re likely needed most.  

Our Culture

Unfortunately, we still live in a chronically individualist culture that promotes individualism over community – especially for men.  Think; The Marlborough Man.  New Dads – we need friends and we need them badly.  Good friends.  Life-giving friends that can help us feel connected to one another and less alone during the transition to parenthood.  We have to work hard to challenge the conventional wisdom that promotes a myth that says ”I can handle this on my own”.   Here a few important reasons why new Dads need good friends more than ever.

  1. Confide:  

There is something magical about being able to confide in one another about our innermost thoughts and feelings.  There is a saying in psychology, “we’re only as sick as our secrets”.  This is the power of having a confidant in a friend.

  1. Relate:

It’s a basic human tendency to believe that we’re the “only ones” who are experiencing certain hardships in life.  It’s the same for new Dads. It’s hard to imagine that other new Dads experience similar hardships too, but when we come to realize we’re not the “only ones”, there seems to be a 1,000 lb. weight lifted off our shoulder.

  1. Supportive Emotional Diversity:

Too many new Dads (and new Moms – but that will be for another post) have a tendency to put all of their emotional eggs in their spouse’s basket.  Dads – your wife cannot be your “everything” – despite what Hollywood wants you to believe.  This is a sure set-up for marital failure and having enough good friends will take some of this pressure off your spouse.

  1. Guide:

New Dads need friends to show them the way though the storm sometimes.  New Dads need friends that serve as mentors, advisors – ones that are trust and can go to for practical advice and suggestion.   New Dads also need these friends to keep them on track and on a healthy path because we all have a tendency to veer from time to time.

  1. Normalize:

And lastly, new Dads need friends to normalize the craziness of the experience of being a new Dad.  Becoming a new Dad is filled with all sorts of doubts, confusion, and twists and turns.  New Dads need good friends along the way to help them realize that what is happening to them is very normal.   It often brings about a good laugh.  

So guys, are you one of the 2 out of 10 new Dads that doesn’t have 4 people to confide in?  If so, what is keeping you from finding these relationships?  For many new Dads, the idea of having friends to function in roles as the 5 listed above is foreign and can feel incomprehensible as to how to do that.  If this is you, consider finding a trusted therapist to help you develop the skills and tools to find those good friends that you need.  

Book a 1-on-1 Coaching Call with me

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