Caring for your Fatherless Newborn

When I brought my first baby home from the hospital, I wanted to do everything right. Actually, even more than that, I wanted to do it to perfection, but I had no clue what I was doing or what I was even supposed to be doing.

I was completely unprepared for the days and the weeks that followed. Life went from routine to absolute chaos in a matter of days. Can you relate? Life as you knew it has changed and now you have kids without a dad, fatherless. Your world has turned upside down and like that first-time mom, you have no clue what you’re even supposed to do!

This could be your first experience with grief, and, let me tell you, you really do want to grieve well, if there’s such a thing. But more than that, you want life to be good for your fatherless kids and you are wondering if that is even possible?

After suffering through sleepless nights with my first newborn baby, a friend who was more experienced than I, and had been on the road a little bit longer, encouraged me with hope, “your baby will eventually sleep through the night.”

And Moms, I just want to say to you, you will get to the other side of this valley. 

You and your fatherless child, and I know it’s even hard to hear that term, will make it through this difficult season. With God as Father, you will find that you can live a victorious life.

But for now, you are experiencing those restless nights of the newborn days. You are physically carrying your baby while emotionally carrying the grief for you both. And on top of that, you have so many questions. You may be asking Why?And I’m confident that you are probably asking How? How am I going to do this solo parenting thing? You may have to work and tend to the things that your husband used to manage. And you never dreamed of raising a child without him. You wonder what the next season of life will look like and will you physically be able to do this?

Whether you are a biological mom, their adopted mom, or even if you are their foster mom, you have been entrusted with a great gift —not only the gift of this child —but the responsibility of impacting their life. You matter! You are critical to the mission of God.

Five simple ways to care for your fatherless newborn:

  1. Love your newborn. In God’s sovereignty, He has chosen to give you this precious baby at this time. They are a gift to you in so many ways and may be the reason you get out of bed every day. As you love this child, may God remind you of His great love for you. I pray that you will learn to relax in His love.
  2. Trust God for His plans for their life. God has not been caught off guard and for some mysterious reason, He has allowed suffering at the very start of your baby’s life. Do not let the fear of the unknown rob you of the joy they give. I pray that you will trust God for your baby’s future and look to God for the way He is going to be good to you.
    “I would have despaired unless I had believed that I would see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Wait for the Lord; be strong and let your heart take courage; yes, wait for the Lord” (Psalm 27:13-14).
  3. Comfort your newborn. Care, hold, and nurture them. As you embrace your newborn baby at this time of great loss, thank God He is embracing you. I pray that God will remind you of His care and comfort for you.
  4. Keep a journal of the story God is writing for you and your child. Journal your thoughts and prayers. You are going to be amazed and you will need this record to share with your child when they are able to really start to understand. Your little one is unaware of the reality that dad is gone, but one day, your newborn will grow up and into the grief of not knowing their earthly daddy. They will want to know the story. I pray that you will tell the story of God’s faithfulness to your baby over and over again even with the hard once upon a time part.
    Practical tip: If journaling is “not your thing,” try the One Line A Day: A Five-Year Memory Book, it’s a simple way to make note of your feelings and how God spoke to you or cared for you.
  5. Pray for them. Let this scripture encourage you:
    “It was you who brought me out of the womb, making me secure at my mother’s breast. I was given over to you at birth; you have been my God from my mother’s womb” (Psalm 22:9-10, CSB).“You have taught children and infants to tell of your strength, silencing your enemies and all who oppose you” (Psalm 8:2, NLT).

Newborn days are some of the most stressful yet also the sweetest. Although in this season, the responsibility of two parents has shifted to one, you are not alone. God is with you. He really is. Will you rest in God and place your trust in im?