Books for expecting dads are a great gift, because your life changes in many ways when you become a dad and you need all the help you can get. From the joy of holding your first child in your arms to the many sleepless nights that come with it, there’s a lot to wrap your head around.
When we had our first child, I was completely lost. What do you do when they cry for no reason? How do you get them to sleep? How do you change their diaper without making them scream? How do you handle the stress?
With all of these questions running through my head, I made it my mission to find the best books for expecting dads. And after reading over a dozen of them, here’s a list of my favorite for answering the many questions that come with parenthood:
1The Happiest Baby on the Block by Harvey Karp
The crying. If there’s one thing that makes you contemplate why you ever thought becoming a father was a good idea, it’s the crying. This book solves that problem in ways that will make you think Harvey Karp is a god amongst mortals.
If you’re looking for the most useful books for expecting dads, this is absolutely number one. You need it if you, and your spouse, want to remain sane through the early years of parenthood.
2On Becoming Babywise by Robert Bucknam
“What is sleep?”
When you have your first child, I promise you’ll be asking yourself that over and over again. I also promise that your life becomes 10x better when you’re newborn finally sleeps through the night consistently.
If you’re looking for good books for expecting dads that help with getting your newborn to sleep, this one tops the list. And while it’s not exactly an engaging read, it provides step-by-step instructions for using the Babywise Method to get your child sleeping 7-8 hours a night. When implemented correctly, it’s a gamechanger for your quality of life.
3It’s a Boy! by Michael Thompson
When I first started reading this book, I thought it read more like a textbook than a practical book about raising a son. I was wrong. If you have a boy, this is a book that you and your spouse will be referring to often for advice on how to navigate the challenges you’ll face as they grow.
While many dads may feel that they already know how to raise a young boy, considering they went through the experience themselves, this book will open your eyes to a lot of the reasons why boys act they way they do (and the optimal ways to react to it).
4Strong Fathers, Strong Daughters by Meg Meeker
Raising a daughter is, for lack of a better word, a challenge. As a father, the duty of raising a son can feel straightforward in many respects. After all, we went through it ourselves. With daughters, however, it’s an entirely different story.
This book by Meg Meeker ranks among my favorite books for expecting dads of daughters because it hits on every question you could possibly have about raising a girl. The best part? It isn’t a roadmap as much as it’s a detailed account of how your daughter will typically respond based on how you, as the father, raise them. If you have a daughter, this is a book that you’ll be revisiting well into their teen years.
5I’m Sorry…Love, Your Husband by Clint Edwards
While all of my children were born before I found this book, it’s my all-time favorite book for expecting dads to read. One of the biggest complaints I have about most fatherhood related books is that they’re not always pleasant to read. This one is different.
Edwards blends stories of his life with three children in a humorous way that’s incredibly engaging to read. And whereas most of the books on this list are focused on practical solutions to common problems, Edwards finds a funny way to touch on some of the real, and sometimes terrifying, moments that you’ll encounter as a father.
6The New Dad’s Playbook by Benjamin Watson
Ben Watson is a former NFL tight end. So what could he possibly know about fatherhood that the rest of us don’t? As it turns out, a lot.
This book, which features stories and lessons from raising his first child, is as entertaining and intriguing as it’s useful. And not only does it touch on the aspects of raising a newborn, but it helps provide perspective on the situations your spouse encounters throughout the process.
If you’re looking for the best books for expecting sports fan dads, this is it.
As a new parent, you’ll undoubtedly develop your own strategy for raising your newborn. But it certainly doesn’t hurt to be prepared for the many challenges that you’ll encounter along the way.
The six books listed above will help you do just that. Add them to your bookshelf. Read them. I promise you’ll become a better parent as a result.
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