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How to support your partner during labour

It must have been an amazing journey with that fabulous partner of yours, so far. But this is just the beginning of so much more to come. The expecting date must be nearing and you both probably have a lot of questions on your mind. And to see your partner go through labour might make you feel a bit helpless. At the same time, we can guarantee that seeing the birth of your child is going to be the best moment of your life. However, you can be a solid support for your partner throughout this entire process of labour. You must be wondering how? In this blog we will make sure that after reading you will be the best labour partner they could wish for!

Be prepared

It might sound a bit cliché but the best way to support your partner during labour is by preparing yourself on what to expect. Nowadays there are also childbirth classes. During these classes your partner will be prepared for the big day and learn about how to remain calm and relaxed. Try to go there together and with an open mind. This will help you both to be confident and you will know exactly how to provide her with support during different scenario’s. It will also help to make you understand how labour works and why a C-section can be necessary at times. Besides, it will also teach you what to do after the first moments when your baby is born. These days you can also find very helpful video’s on the internet which can educate you a lot.


Once the contractions start, things can move pretty fast. But how are you sure that these are contractions and not a false alarm? Well, if your partner keeps feeling the contractions every five minutes and they last for approximately a minute and this keeps going for an hour minimum, you can start getting ready for labour. If possible, try to support your partner and make sure your partner sleeps for some time during the preparation process. Rub her back and put something warm on her lower back to ease the pain a bit. However, it can also happen that your partner’s water breaks first while she does not feel any contractions. Your midwife or doctor might decide to wait a bit.

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Duration of labour

You must be wondering how long the entire labour process will take? Every labour is different and it also depends whether your partner is having a baby for the first or second time. If we take the scenario of a common first time birth, it will take approximately 56 hours. That sounds like a lot of time and it is, but it will be spread over 5 stages: Early labour, Active labour, Transitional labour, Pushing and delivery and lastly the longest stage postpartum.

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Don’t forget yourself

As hectic as it might get, don’t forget yourself!  This was you will be able to support your partner better. An idea might be to bring some things with you to  keep you busy when your partner is resting, such as a book. We highly recommend the book The Birth Partner: A Complete Guide to Childbirth for Dads written by Katie Rohs and Penny Simkin. We are sure, after holding your little one in your arms for the first time it will be worth the wait. Enjoy those first precious moments together as a (new) family. ,