Don’t forget to read the previous part of the article: Predisposing Factors for Experiencing Perinatal Anxiety
First, we should say that few studies have directly compared fathers and mothers regarding anxiety during the perinatal period. Work completed on this topic focuses mostly on the experience of future or new mothers. However, research is currently underway to explore possible anxiety experienced by men on their way to becoming fathers. Unsurprisingly, we can say that to date, men express their anxiety less than women, which can explain, in part, why anxiety rates are higher in women.
Men can experience anxiety which can lead to distress like in women, but they’re less inclined to ask for and receive help. There seems to be a difference in the way worries and anxiety are managed by a father and mother. Fathers are quicker to look for solutions, problem-solving when they’re worried about something compared to mothers. Consequently, the solutions they find are sometimes temporary or superficial, which relieves them over the short-term but tends to sustain their anxiety over the medium- and long-term.
Also, what is interesting is that if the mother is fine physically and psychologically, able to manage her daily life in the couple and family, the father’s anxiety rate will be lower. If the mother is doing fine, the father has a better chance of doing fine.
Continue reading: Important Resources and Support for Perinatal Anxiety.