Any Irish mothers here?

(7 Posts)
sarahquilt Sat 07-Sep-13 21:21:18

My husband and I are irish and are in the early days of pregnancy. We have good jobs but would much prefer to be at home. Unfortunately, it's not likely we will be able to go home any time soon. Sometimes I find British culture a little different and it feels strange to be giving birth in a different country. Was wondering if anyone else had gone through the same thing?

willitbe Sun 08-Sep-13 08:11:57

The British and Irish cultures are very different. I have given birth in both countries, there are some differences between NHS and HSE ways of dealing with pregnancy. But in terms of birth there is not as much, slightly lower rate of c-section for first pregnancies in uk.

In England there is heavier focus on testing that baby is ok during pregnancy.

I had my first and then moved permanent "abroad", when ds1 was6 weeks old. So getting to know other new mums/mammies locally was hard.

Do you know of any Irish clubs locally? Do you have any local Irish friends nearby, this could all help, if not make sure you look into mother and toddler groups nearby to see if you can find any new mums that you can relate to afterwards.

I had mild post natal depression after my first, and I am sure a big part of that was being in a "strange country" not knowing anyone during those early weeks.

Apparentlychilled Sun 08-Sep-13 10:14:10

I'm Irish but have had my children in the uk. Slightly diff situation to yours as I came over years ago, long before children. But when I had then I did yearn for "home" (even though the UK is really my home now), so I think some of it (at least for me) was hormones and nesting. Not knockin how you're feeling, esp as it sounds like you and your Dh are only here cos of the economy in Ireland at the mo.

I would say get to as many ante natal things as poss and try to strike up friendships w other expectant mums. I've found I've had most in common w other women who don't live near their own mums (maybe cos that immediate day to day support isn't av). From a friend who had one child in the uk but moved back home w a new baby 2nd time round, it seems that the one of the main differences that she found is that at home mums spend lots of time w their family (ie the grandparents of the new baby) and that's not so common here, due to distance. But the upside of that is that there's loads to do w your baby (baby groups, classes etc) which helps to make friends and find a support system.

Good luck.

sarahquilt Sun 08-Sep-13 17:14:40

Thanks lads - that's made me feel a lot better. It's nice talking to people who understand how I feel. Sometimes it's very lonely. I find it hard to make friends in England but I think I need to try harder xx

Apparentlychilled Sun 08-Sep-13 19:07:14

Sarah, we moved out of London (where we'd lived for nearly 10 years) about a year before having dd and I felt bereft and wondered what the hell we were doing (and we talked a lot about moving "home" to London often), but really, NCT classes and getting stuck into anything that sounds remotely interesting rally helped us settled.

Chin up- it will get easier.

mathanxiety Sun 08-Sep-13 19:22:23

I had all my DCs in the US and also morphed into a sahm when the first was born. I made sure to get out with her as much as possible, went to baby classes, went to the library, went swimming at the local pool, and resigned myself to introducing myself as '[X's] mother' and spending a lot of my time talking about all things baby. Once the baby is born you will have a ready-made little calling card for yourself. In my case, DD1 had red hair, which was considered very attractive and the epitome of cute Irishness in the US so she was a great icebreaker. There was a part of me that hated being stereotyped all the same.

I really, really wanted to chuck it all in and go back to Ireland for several years. I had no relatives in the US and photos and phone calls weren't cutting it. It was a long time before I had anyone I would consider a real friend as opposed to an acquaintance.

Cultures are really different after you go beyond surface level similarities of language (even that is more of a gulf than anything else when you are finding your feet). It's worth looking for what you have in common though it may seem like there is very little.

Apparentlychilled Sun 08-Sep-13 19:52:21

When I moved to the UK (as I said, long before DC), I felt so confused by the culture difference, as I had expected us all to be the same. I think the common language can trick us into thinking we have more in common than we do, iykwim. I mean, I know we're all just people underneath it all, but when adjusting it's easy to think same language =same everything.

I'd also say persevere and be proactive w anyone you meet who you seem to click with- it will take a while to find true friends who you can call after a row w DH or when you need a cry, but it will happen.

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