My wife and I are about a month away from the premiere of Clark Tranchell, our first child. We’ve each read a ton of books on birth and newborns and all that. The books are full of information about what to eat, what not to eat, how to prepare a nursery, how to make the pregnant woman as comfortable as (im)possible, and so much more. I have yet to come across a book with information on movies you shouldn’t watch while your wife is pregnant. I’ve discovered a few things not to do and I’m here to share them with you.
1. Don’t watch “Rosemary’s Baby,” “Alien,” “Alien 2,” or “The Omen,”
One might think this would be common knowledge, but some of us need a reminder. Don’t try to get away with it by adapting the guideline to “Don’t watch while wife is at home.” She could call you, or come home at any minute and you would be toast. Plus, you might want to talk about it and if your wife is the person you talk to most, you’re busted.
2. Classical music is good, heavy metal isn’t.
This is a tough one for me. You want your baby to get used to the various noises they’ll hear during the day and night, but blaring Metallica might not be the way to go. Your wife might not like metal and, let’s face it, while the baby is still in the womb, you pretty much have to choose activities she enjoys.
3. Watch out for emotional commercials.
Two days after the Super Bowl, we sat down with the laptop and watched the commercials together. Remember the one about farmers? Or the various “support our troops and veterans” ads? Even worse, that Kia commercial about how babies come from space? She made it through but it got rough a couple times. As much as we’ve tried not to say, “Oh, it’s just because you’re pregnant,” there are hormonal triggers that can’t be helped. As the husband/father, it’s your job to help ride it out. Just don’t say out loud, “Oh, it’s just because you’re pregnant.” She’s apt to remember anything you say at the worst possible time.
4. Avoid jokes about child birth.
We need to face it, Dads. There is nothing we will ever do that compares to growing another human being inside you. So when you hear a comedian tell a joke about childbirth, it’s best to hang until the baby is walking to bring it up. Just because you think that bit about Lamaze that you saw Bill Cosby do back in the ‘80s is the funniest thing ever, don’t expect your wife to agree.
These are only a few things I’ve come across. I’m sure I will have even more “don’ts” once the baby arrives. Heck, I might have 18 years-worth of learning what not to do ahead of me.
• Backstage Pass is a new blog on www.yakima-herald.com covering pop culture from Hollywood to your backyard. T.J. Tranchell, a freelance journalist and Herald-Republic customer service clerk, can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.