If you have recently discovered that you are expecting a baby, you are more than likely over the moon with joy and anticipation. Even though, for most women, pregnancy is one of life’s most joyous and momentous events, a lot of women are often fearful (especially if it is their first pregnancy) and they are doubtful of their abilities to make it as a mother!
This article is written to give women the reassurance that they are not alone in their doubts and fears, and just about each and every pregnant woman shares the same fears! Not only is pregnancy a life-changing event but hormones are sent into overdrive and to this end, the most rational of women can be quickly turned into a paranoid worry-wart!
The pregnant woman’s biggest fears:
Will I love my baby? The answer to this question is YES! The moment a newborn baby is placed in their mother’s arms, love is instantaneous. If this is one of your fears, remember that it is not unusual for a woman to feel a sense of detachment from the baby that is growing inside them, however moments after birth, the fear melts away and the love between mother and child becomes evident. There are cases where women suffer from PPD (Postpartum Depression) and they feel little or no connection to their new baby – if this is the case, help is close at hand for the mother who has feelings of depression. Moms who feel that they are unable to bond with their baby should seek counselling and advice from their caregiver. Postpartum Depression is common and with the right help, new moms will be able to overcome the symptoms of PPD.
Will I have a miscarriage? This is a very common and very real fear among women during pregnancy. Women who worry about this possibility of suffering a miscarriage are urged to remember that miscarriages occur very early in the pregnancy, usually within the first few weeks and many women do not even realise that they are pregnant. The facts are that less than 20% of pregnancies result in miscarriages and women who have suffered from a previous miscarriage can be reassured by the fact that the chances of a suffering a second miscarriage are slight (less than 3%). The risk of a miscarriage can be reduced if the expectant mom follows a healthy lifestyle, stops smoking and does not consume alcohol. However in saying this, often a miscarriage is caused by a chromosomal abnormality and this prevents the foetus from developing which means that a miscarriage cannot be avoided.
What if I harm my baby? As long as the expectant mom follows a healthy eating plan, avoids smoking and drinking and takes their prescribed vitamins, all is well! Certainly contact sports and other vigorous activities should also be avoided, but the fact is that baby is pretty well protected and safely tucked away!
Will my baby be born with all ten fingers and all ten toes? The reality of the situation is that only 4% of pregnancies will result in babies who are born with birth defects and falling into this 4% category are the less severe birth defects, such as a small and very repairable heart defect. What’s more the folic acids which are found in the pregnancy vitamins will aid to reduce the risk of brain and spinal defects and women who are concerned about genetic defects are urged to discuss their fears and concerns with their doctor, who will shed light on their fears and provide them with the facts.
The thought of labour terrifies me! This fear of the impending labour and birth is undoubtedly caused by the horror stories which are passed down from friends and work colleagues. The expectant mom should try to bear in mind that if labour was so unbearable – the world would not be as populated as it is and most women would definitely stop at baby number one. Furthermore, women have been giving birth since the days when Adam and Eve roamed the Garden of Eden and they did it without epidurals! The best advice for women is to relax, enjoy the pregnancy and try to avoid listening to the dreadful labour stories that are willingly shared by book-club friends, work colleagues and others! Labour is meant to be hard work, hence the term -labour’, but with such a wide range of pain relief options readily available – labour and child birth is a lot easier today than it has ever been.
Will my partner still find me attractive when I am expecting? Again, this is a resounding YES! A pregnant woman who gazes at her appearance in a mirror will probably see herself as being overweight and out of proportion. A man will look at his pregnant partner in wonder, and her voluptuous curves and growing baby bump will in all likelihood send him into overdrive. To a man, a pregnant woman is very desirable and a man will be very attracted to his partner!
Do I have what it takes to make a good mom? Rest assured that mothering is a natural instinct and every woman has the ability to be a great mom! By nature women are intuitive, which means their senses are perfectly programmed to identify the needs of their newborn baby. A new mother will know when her baby is hungry, uncomfortable, lonely or tired, and by relying solely on her natural talents and instincts, a woman will be the best mom she can be! In addition to her natural intuition, women are caregivers and this means that they are already perfectly equipped with all that is needed to make them the world’s greatest mom!
Fears are very common in pregnancy and the good news is that the fears of most women very seldom come to pass. Therefore, relax, enjoy each and every moment of your pregnancy, and look forward to meeting your newborn baby. This cherished meeting will dismiss the fears of pregnancy in an instant!