TALKING about fatherhood and childbirth doesn't come naturally to the average Aussie bloke.
But take him to the pub, give him a beer and he might just warm to the idea.
That's the concept behind Beer + Bubs, a series of one-night prenatal sessions starting on the Northern Rivers.
Co-ordinator and Alstonville-based "dadvocate" Darren Mattock, said fathers were usually overlooked during childbirth preparation.
"I love being a dad and I want to help other dads," he said.
"I've found through my work with the Fatherhood Project and the Building Better Dads program that men are worried about not knowing what they need to do.
"That's where Beer + Bubs can fill this gap.
"Currently men are not included in maternity care programs; they are not involved in male-friendly ways.
"Expectant dads are so under-prepared.
"Men feel like they have no sense of position or purpose, but we will be trying to connect them with that."
Mr Mattock will be running the sessions in Byron Bay with Heidi Jones, a local birth attendant.
Their aim is to make the most of their mix of experience and knowledge to give practical, useful information with humour.
"They remember the jokes," Mr Mattock said.
"But I do see a transformation in men when they realise they have an important role in childbirth.
"They feel acknowledged and they feel validated.
"The hardest part of getting men to participate in family-related programs is getting them through the door, that's why the pub."
BEER + BUBS = GOOD DAD
Beer + Bubs is held at Byron Bay Brewery usually once a month.
Sessions go for about 2 1/2 hours.
It covers what to say and what not to say during childbirth, tips on being an advocate for the mother, pain management tips and specific recommendations on supporting a woman through labour, including cesareans.
Visit beerandbubs.com.au for more information or bookings or phone Darren Mattock on 0429 023 610.
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