|PHOTO: KYLE FERENC AND HIS 3-MONTH OLD SON, JACKSON
Dads-to-be gain confidence at Daddy Boot Camp
Edward Hospital's Daddy Boot Camp is a three-hour program that helps dads-to-be become confident and proactive in caring for their baby, and in supporting the baby's mom in her new role.
"Our emphasis is on education and skill-building," says workshop leader Ryan Lauterwasser, LCPC, who trained as a master coach in the highly regarded national Boot Camp for New Dads program. The 37-year-old is also a therapist at Linden Oaks at Edward and the father of four. "We have experienced dads on hand to share what they've learned with the rookies. And, we offer the dads-to-be hands-on experience with a real infant."
The first portion of the program focuses on how having a new baby affects the couple. The group looks at how mom and dad can work together to find the best way to operate as a new family. In the second hour, the men break up into small groups for the hands-on part of the session.
The program's final segment covers baby safety, tips for comforting a fussy baby, and how to tell the difference between ordinary baby blues and the more troublesome postpartum depression (PPD).
Naperville resident Kyle Ferenc, who’s volunteering as a Daddy Boot Camp veteran, talked at a recent program about his wife Alyssa's bout of mild PPD.
"We read about this in books, but that doesn't fully prepare you for the real experience," he says. "At least we knew enough to jump right on it and get her into treatment. She's doing great now."
The single-session program is held monthly at the Edward Education Center on the campus of Edward Hospital, 801 S. Washington St. in Naperville. The fee is $15. For more information, call (630) 527-7685.