James Van Der Beek gets thumbs-up from the Rock for sharing skin-to-skin photo with newborn daughter

Suzy Byrne
Editor, Yahoo Entertainment

The Rock has inspired the Beek.

Over the weekend, James and Kimberly Van Der Beek welcomed their fifth child. Baby girl Gwendolyn was born on Friday at their home — with a doctor and midwife on hand. Everybody is healthy, happy, and celebrating the new addition.

James Van Der Beek is following in the footsteps of Dwayne “the Rock” Johnson by sharing a photo of him doing skin to skin with his newborn daughter. (Photo: Getty Images)

The birth process is nothing new for the Dawson’s Creek alum and star of Pose, but this time around, he followed in the footsteps of everybody’s favorite celebrity dad, Dwayne Johnson, and shared a photo of himself shirtless while doing skin to skin with the newborn. Van Der Beek gave Johnson a shout-out, tagging him on Twitter and giving a name to what may become a new viral craze: the “newborn challenge.”

Johnson soon responded, giving a thumbs-up. The father of three also made a joke about making babies.

Perhaps Van Der Beek will post a photo of himself spoon-feeding his wife while she breastfeeds next — then he’ll really be taking a page from the Rock’s parenting playbook.

In April, Johnson and his partner, Lauren Hashian, welcomed their second child, Tiana Gia Johnson, and the proud papa (who also has a daughter from his first marriage) shared a post about skin to skin — and the important role the nonbirthing parent plays when a woman gives birth. “Word to the wise gentlemen, it’s critical to be by your lady’s head when she’s delivering, being as supportive as you can,” he wrote. “Holding hands, holding legs, whatever you can do. But, if you really want to understand the single most powerful and primal moment life will ever offer — watch your child being born. Its a life changer and the respect and admiration you have for a woman, will forever be boundless.”

Johnson was applauded for his post, with it being noted that skin to skin is “as important as it is cute” for a number of reasons, including that it helps strengthen a baby’s immune system, calm the child, stimulate better sleep, and just create stronger bonds.

So bravo, fellas. Let’s hope this trend takes off in a big way.

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