Labor Kit for Dads-to-be

Labor kit for dads-to-be: A pack of useful items for the birth. Whether you're going to be present at the birth or not (and I recommend you do if possible), your role is important and goes way beyond the synchronised huffing and puffing of planet sitcom. The value of the support you can really provide cannot be expressed with words, indeed don't expect anybody to try. Just think of yourself as the strong, silent type - the unsung "mankind's happiness is my reward" superhero. With that image firmly planted in your head, take the following items with you when labor starts to complete the illusion. (Incidentally, it would be even more superhero-like to have your labor pack in the car weeks before the due date. Children like to play tricks on their parents even before they leave the womb by appearing at the most inconvenient time and place).

Your 'New Dad Labor Pack' should contain:

  • List of special requests for the midwives, e.g. you'd like to cut the umbilical cord yourself, pain relief preferences, etc.
  • Lots of change for the car park and telephone calls.
  • "In labor" sign for the car - some hospitals allow you to park for free while you're in labor.
  • Sponge or flannel and maybe a small plastic bowl.
  • Handheld electric fan.
  • Aerosol water spray, as in the photo.
  • Energy drinks and food. Sandwiches and bananas are good, as are non-perishables like crisps and chocolate bars.
  • Something to read for both of you (baby-related and otherwise) or games to play for dull moments.
  • Music (for your partner, not you) on CD and cassette, to be on the safe side.
It would be even more superhero-like to have your pack in the car weeks before the due date.
  • Notepad & pen to make a note of birth weight, length, initial impressions, etc. Don't expect to remember these.
  • Phone numbers of friends and family, including someone to buy that day's newspaper. Have the hospital's number just in case.
  • Camera (still or video) to record the birth, or at least the result of it. Lots of spare film/memory card/blank tape.
  • Lots of batteries for the camera & fan.
  • Deodorant, toothbrush & toothpaste, shaver.
  • Wear light, cool clothes - it can get hot in there - and maybe something to change into.
  • Some massage oil.
  • Something to celebrate with. I know of a dad who smuggled in a mini bottle of Champagne but of course I wouldn't condone this.
  • Empty bag or box to keep baby momentoes in, e.g. wrist tags, baby's first bit of dribble, etc.
  • Birth ball, if they don't have them at the hospital.
  • Car seat or cot, fitted and ready with blanket. Do not forget this! (You will be going home alone otherwise.)

N.B. Don't forget to tell your partner what you're taking. She may have things to add to your list but more importantly you can show off how enthusiastic and supportive you are. She should have a labor pack of her own prepared so check you've not got the same things twice.

Comments (now closed)

I've been checking out your website, I'm reading all of your notes some of the things you have thought about like this pack i would of never of thought of it... your helping alot.. thanks..
NLTdad31 December 2006