Fathers’ encounters with pregnancy, birth and maternity care.

Activity: Talk or presentationInvited talk


The Where's Dad Conference
Hosted by Changing Futures (NE) in Partnership with Northumbria University.
The Relationship Project.

There is growing evidence that the engagement of fathers in maternity care is associated with good health and wellbeing benefits for mothers and babies. Yet, maternity care expectations and experiences of expectant and new fathers continue to receive little attention from policymakers and maternity service providers.

This presentation explores the current research evidence and gives examples of studies that demonstrate the health and wellbeing benefits of involving fathers in their newborn baby's care. Fathers' experiences with pregnancy, birth, and maternity care are often being on the periphery, being left out, being a bystander, being an invisible parent, and receiving information second-hand. However, they wanted to be involved.

As partner and parent fathers experience a not-patient and not-visitor (identity) which situates them in an interstitial and undefined space with the consequence that many feel excluded and fearful. Fathers cannot support their partner effectively unless they are themselves supported, included, and prepared for the reality of risk and uncertainty in pregnancy, labour, and parenthood and for their role in this context.

Period29 Mar 2023
Event titleChanging Futures North East: Exploring relationships: Where's Dad?
Event typeConference
LocationNewcastle, United KingdomShow on map
Degree of RecognitionNational