From the moment the woman shows the first physical signs of pregnancy it is clear that the baby belongs to her and that she is its mother. The man who has no such evidence that he is the father has to cope with the emotional changes that fatherhood entails. In extreme cases this may lead to denial or rejection of parenthood and to a break-up of the relationship. Acknowledgement of his part in the pregnancy may be provided by attendance at antenatal classes and at the birth. However, diminished sexual response by the woman because of early symptoms of pregnancy such as tiredness, sickness and discomfort may increase his already present feelings of envy, resentment or rivalry of the growing baby, and be further reinforced by the mother’s preoccupation with the baby once it is born.


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