Mother and Baby

Pregnancy Prep: Could A Doll Really Help You Get Ready For Your Baby?

How you and your partner interact with a baby doll could predict how you’ll be as parents, according to latest research

Expecting parents, listen up! Meet your new relationship guru: a baby doll.

Yep, you heard us right. That’s the interesting (albeit slightly off-the-wall) outcome of a new study – the way parents-to-be interact while looking after a doll can predict how they’ll be when their actual baby arrives.

A team at Ohio State University in the US recorded 182 couples in the third trimester playing with a doll that represented their baby.

They were specifically looking at how the pair engaged with each other as well as their “child” and, when they observed them again after their baby was born, found lots of similarities in behaviour.

The way parents-to-be interact while looking after a doll can predict how they’ll be when their actual baby arrives

‘The extent to which couples support or undermine each other's interactions with the doll predicts their co-parenting behaviour a year later,’ says Sarah Schoppe-Sullivan, co-author of the study.

‘We saw the same kinds of behaviours between parents when they were interacting with their baby that we saw a year earlier with the doll.’

And while Schoppe-Sullivan admits the idea is a little unorthodox, she highlights that if points of tension can be predicted, it may help couples work through them to parent more successfully.

So, if you want to work out any differences (read: hone your partner’s nappy skills to avoid No-You-Hold-THAT-Leg niggles later on), it’s time to head to the toyshop.

Would you ever try something like this to prepare for your baby? Let us know on the comments board below.

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