Study: Childbirth Also Traumatic for Men

Photo: LWA-Sharie Kennedy/Corbis

Complications during childbirth might be more traumatic for the father than the mother, according to Oxford University researchers. Mostly because dad’s not doped up. “For the dads, it’s extremely vivid because they are fully aware of what’s going on,” said researcher Professor Marian Knight. And a little bit because they have no idea what’s going on. One man has suffered flashbacks to when he looked through the hospital doors and saw a placenta lying on the table. “I didn’t know what it was,” he said. Another father, whose daughter was born during an emergency cesarean, told the Independent, “I was ignorant and very scared.” A third dad, whose wife was rushed to an intensive care unit during delivery, was diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder and has been unable to return to work in seven years. Knight urges hospitals to think of the fathers. Maybe try adding Xanax and an anatomy book to the hospital bag.