Top Five Fears of New Moms
Reviewed by James Brann, MDBecoming a mother for the first time is unquestionably the biggest change of a woman’s life. Yes, marriage, losing your virginity, graduating and other firsts is right up there, but there is truly nothing that is so drastically life altering than bringing a new human being into the world. Indeed, motherhood comes with major responsibility, anxiety, happiness, stress, excitement and fear.
- 1. Fear of never being able to do anything personal again.
We’ve all seen moms who look tired, stressed, or who complain about never being able to go out and do things after the baby is born. Even simple things, such as going to the hair salon or going out to dinner with a friend, often fall by the wayside in exchange for changing poopy diapers, sleepless nights and breastfeeding. A pregnant mom might even feel guilty about thinking this way, wondering if she is just plain too selfish for parenthood.
While it is true that your schedule drastically changes once the baby comes, it does not mean that you should stop being you or doing things that you enjoy. If you like jogging, for example, you could invest in a jogger stroller. If you want to visit a friend and it seems like too much of a hassle to bring the baby along, find help to relieve you for a couple of hours a week. A grandparent, aunt or uncle of the child, or even a reliable babysitter will do wonders for your sanity and make you feel like you can still be “you” and not just “mommy”.
- 2. Fear of body changes, such as stretch marks, weight gain, pot belly, etc.
You worked hard to keep your curvy, girlish figure. Now the baby is coming along, and you wonder, “Will my body ever look the same?” The simple answer is, no. However, your body can look as good as it does pre-pregnancy, if not better, if you are committed and do not give up on yourself.
There are many ways you can overcome the imperfections, but if you ask any woman if she would trade her child in for the body she used to have, 99.9% of all moms would say, “No way.” Embrace your imperfections and be confident that you will be a wonderful mother!
- 3. Fear of baby being born with defects or health issues.
It happens, and there is nothing you can do about it. Taking care of you during pregnancy is the best precaution against any birth defects or health issues. Try not to worry or becoming obsessed with the “what-ifs” because these negative thoughts will drive you crazy. Remember that positive thoughts lead to positive outcomes, so worrying about something you have no control over is just a waste of your time and energy.
- 4. Fear of inexperience leading to accidental injury of your child.
This fear can keep you tossing and turning all night long! Newborn babies are so fragile, and if you are a mother who has not been around babies all that much or feel inexperienced with children, this fear is perfectly understandable! Some mothers with this fear worry they will drop the baby, or trip and fall while holding it, or pick it up the wrong way and somehow hurts its floppy little head, or that they won’t put the right blankets in the crib, or feed the baby wrong, and the list goes on!
- 5. Fear of childbirth.
Women swap stories with new mothers about their own labor pains, which can actually lead to these anxieties. If a mother tries to tell you about her labor that lasted 36 hours and how excruciatingly painful it was, politely bow out of the conversation. The last thing you need are people “stoking the fire” and making your fears even more terrifying.
Some women only experience mild discomfort during childbirth, and there are ways you can increase your odds of having a less painful delivery. Taking care of yourself during pregnancy, chiropractic care or massages, yoga, exercise and other types of methods can help you deliver a healthy baby. As many women will tell you, the pain of childbirth will soon be forgotten by the very moment you hold your newborn in your arms for the first time. So take a deep breath and relax. You will survive and get through it like a champion.
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