With Father’s Day coming up this weekend, we want to recognize all of the wonderful fathers of premature babies. Your love for your children, the way you care for them and their mothers, and your unique bond with your babies is truly touching to see. Thank you for sharing your stories, encouraging other fathers, and offering a perspective that is often overlooked. You are irreplaceable and an inspiration.

Here are some of the preemie dads we love following and insights into how dads cope with having a baby in the NICU.

Little Daisy-Mae is a Facebook community started by preemie dad Wayne Little, with his wife Jenny, to share their daughter’s story, and encourage other families with micro preemies. Daisy-Mae was born in 2013 at 25 weeks, and is now a darling little girl, doing all of the things 3-year-olds will do.

Hand to Hold’s PreemieBabies101 is a fantastic blog with articles addressing a wide range of issues related to premature birth. This one, in which mom Beth Puskas interviews her husband about his experience of their son’s premature birth, is especially touching.

Graham’s Foundation put together this video for Father's Day a few years ago, and it's a beautiful salute to dads and the role they play in those early NICU days. It features photos of fathers with their babies, and there’s just nothing like the looks on their faces. It’s a wonderful thing.

Another video, from UNC REX Healthcare in Raleigh, NC, features dads talking about their experiences and offering advice to new preemie dads. A neonatologist also offers insight into what the NICU experience can be like for dads and how fathers can try to balance being there for the baby and the mom, while also looking after themselves.

A preemie dad is a special kind of dad. The demands of fatherhood in these circumstances are high, and over and over dads say there is just nothing that compares to the experience. The fear, the uncertainty, the sadness, the joy; preemie dads face it all and we want to take the time to say that you have our deepest admiration and respect. Happy Father’s Day!

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