PARENTS

New Dads Get A Baby Glow, Just Like Mums

14/08/2014 16:48 | Updated 22 May 2015
New dads get a baby glow just like mums

We dads have always known it, but now there is official proof – we experience the same kind of baby glow as mums when we become parents.

A new study confirms that our self-image improves and we feel more masculine once we become fathers.

And we also get a kick out of women saying 'Ahhhhh' when they see us strutting around like peacocks with our newborns. (I carried my firstborn face-outwards in one of those ridiculous Baby Bjorn slings to show the world what a superdad I was!)

The study examined 182 people who were all newlywed adults with an average age of 24 for a women and 26 for a man.

They were asked to give their verdict on their own well-being and appearance at the start of the study, the one year anniversary and the second anniversary.

One question asked them to rate how attractive they found themselves on a scale of one to 10 and how ordinary they thought they were on a scale of one to five. For men who didn't have children, notions of attractiveness remained stable.

But those who became fathers during the study's time frame felt more attractive after their child was born than they did previously.

Lead researcher Alicia Cast, an associate professor the University of California-Santa Barbara, said: "I was talking about this paper with my husband and he commented on the attention he got when he was seen in public holding our son after he was born.

"Like: 'Aren't you a good dad', 'Look at that new dad with his baby'.

"Women get that feedback, too, because everybody loves a new baby. But that (benefit) may be countered by other things she's experiencing that he's not, in terms of how her body has changed and being more physically tired.

"There's a lot of attention paid to how women think about themselves – particularly their bodies and their physical attractiveness – after childbirth.

"But to our knowledge there's been nothing that looked at men."

Ronald Rohner, professor emeritus of family studies at the University of Connecticut, who was not involved in the research, added that it was an 'intriguing idea'. He said: "Whereas some women experience postpartum depression, some men experience a postpartum glow."

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