Fathers and Antenatal Education in Italy. a Challenge for Gender Equality.
Aim of this paper is to explore this aspect of men’s transitions to fatherhood in Italy: if and how expectant fathers are involved in antenatal education. The data were collected in Milan through two data collection means: 6 qualitative interviews to key informants (obstetricians and birth-class instructors) conducted in February 2015; around 100 structured interviews to expectant fathers conducted in the period 2007-2013. The data clearly highlight the importance of antenatal education for expectant fathers; they also underline the need to introduce significant changes to better meet the needs of both mothers and fathers.
Our paper draws upon the results of a study (study team composed of: Alessandra Andrisani; Roberto Fumagalli; Marco Inghilleri; Lia Lombardi; Maria Cristina Ortu; Valeria Pecorelli; Elisabetta Ruspini - University of Milan and Padova) that tried to answer the following questions: How do expectant fathers respond to pregnancy? How do men feel about the physical and behavioral changes in their partner? How are birth classes organized? What kind of information are offered? Is there a positive interaction between fathers’ attendance at antenatal classes, their involvement in childcare and their attitude toward gender equality in childcare? How do fathers feel after childbirth?