How does a woman feel supported during a pregnancy? And how does a man show his support? It would be such a lucky happenstance if the list of deeds was the same in answer to both questions. In most situations, it is not.
For instance, a woman wants a man to positively break down in tears when he sees the first ultrasound. She wants him to lie every night with his head tenderly balanced on her belly and sing the unborn to sleep. She wants him to debate nursery furniture and colour coordinates with enthusiasm and interest, but always to defer the final decision to her. Similarly, she wants him to provide lengthy lists of potential baby names and to engage in animated discussions, but then to leave her with vito power. She wants him to LOVE prenatal classes - to bring a thick notebook and scribble in the margins of baby books like a man possessed. She wants him to skip along to every obstetrician appointment with his own list of questions clutched in his hand.
How does a loving and anxiously excited dad-to-be truly show his support? He will GO to the first ultrasound, dutifully hold his wife's hand and scrutinize the computer screen in order to try to figure out which end is the head. He will not necessarily caress the pregnant belly every waking moment in hopes of feeling a movement, but he will tenderly love and caress his wife as she proceeds to get rounder and rounder, to complain about her weight and her various adipose deposits while she voraciously devours all the good treats in the fridge and pantry. He will paint the baby's room, risking life and limb on teetering ladders and painstakingly touching up the trim around the windows and closets. He will allow his wife to make the decorating decisions as long as her choices don't make his unborn son seem lame. He will cross OFF the names he does not like on as many lists of baby names as she is willing to create. He will agree to accompany her to prenatal classes despite the fact that his best friend says they're not necessary and despite the fact that they take up six consecutive wednesday nights of his time. He will even agree to go to a hospital tour, whatever that is! And he will go to the first obstetrician appointment in order to meet the person who has a 20% chance of delivering his first-born child. He may not do these things merrily, but he will do them because it will make his wife smile. He will frequently ask, "Is this something I should go to?" because he is not always sure. And when he's not sure, he knows his wife will tell him.