AIBU to suddenly feel terrified of motherhood at 39 weeks pregnant?(31 Posts)
I am currently 39+4 with my first child. This pregnancy was very much planned and wanted (I suffered a traumatic miscarriage last year) and I was overjoyed to fall pregnant again. I am excited and can't wait to meet my baby.
However, with my due date looming ever closer I've suddenly found myself utterly terrified of what I've gotten myself into. The thought of a whole little person being completely reliant on me for EVERYTHING is terrifying! I often sit and think 'What on earth am I getting myself into? What am I doing?!'
I think a good deal of it is fear of the unknown. I have exactly zero experience with babies. I've never even held one before, let alone changed a nappy or bathed one.
Did anyone else feel this way when they were pregnant? Like I said, I cannot wait to meet my little girl, but she's also seeming pretty scary right now!
I was the same 😂
You just instinctively know what to do 🤷🏻♀️
Watching this thread as I feel the same at 31 weeks
Yes, I felt exactly like that before DS1 was born and I felt it after he arrived too. When we were allowed to just walk out of the hospital with him I almost said to the nurses 'Are you sure? We really don't know what we're doing, you know. We made an utter hash of changing a nappy upstairs and I'm not sure this poor little mite is going to survive having us clueless pair as parents'. Anyway, he's 11 now and he's very much alive! TBH, I think it would be more worrying if first time parents didn't occasionally have thoughts like yours. Take a deep breath and just roll with it. It will be fine, terrifying at times, it's true, but just ask for help when you need it and good luck!
I hadn’t had any experience with babies either. It’s a shock to the system but it’s amazing to at last meet this baby you’ve been thinking about for so long. Go easy on yourself and don’t expect too much of yourself ... just let yourself gradually get to know your baby, gradually get used to being a mother. Don’t worry if it takes time.
Thank you all! Glad to know it's normal to feel like this.
I think its a perfectly normal thing to feel as a first time mother. Somehow you just get on with it and things come to you naturally. You’ll be fine.
I felt that from the second I found out I was pregnant with dd. I was absolutely bloody terrified the whole way through. I was a wreck to be honest.
Then she was born and i realised how silly that was really. You just have the overwhelming need to nurture and care for them. I had an "Oh, of course I can keep you alive!" moment when I saw her. And I have! She is 5 and is definitely still alive and is thriving and I love being a mum, so much so I'm now pg with dc2 and I can't wait!
You will be fine. Instinct gives you a good start, then the rest you learn through trial and error on the job. Congratulations on your pregnancy and good luck!
I was the same too! Had never spent any time around babies, and couldn't even keep a pet goldfish or pot plant alive. You will be fine though, a lot of it does come very instinctively. Maybe watch some Youtube videos of nappies being changed, babies being breastfed etc just so it all seems less unfamiliar to you.
The good thing is that a newborn's needs are VERY simple. All they need is a clean nappy, milk, cuddles and sleep... usually cuddles and sleep at the same time! Expect to spend a lot of time on the sofa feeding and cuddling your baby, and not much else, in the early days. And don't be surprised like I was if your newborn doesn't magically sleep when placed in a cot They just love cuddles. Also don't be worried if your baby cries a lot and won't settle easily, especially after a few weeks, you're not doing anything wrong, babies just cry, some more than others. Again, cuddles.
The other challenges come gradually over time so you have plenty of time to enjoy your baby and trawl Mumsnet for advice on all the little things like weaning and toddler tantrums and so on.
Thats completely normal as reality sets in.
It took me a long time to realise that being pregnant was going to result in having a baby
It’s completely normal! It is so daunting before baby arrives, it’s all so new, but also really exciting. Try not to worry, it’s amazing how much you know what to do when the time is right.
Google the fourth trimester. For the first 12 weeks all baby’s need is for you to recreate a womb like environment, lots of BFing (just offer it for every cry or wimper, seriously you can’t overfeed a BF baby and bring on the boob is the nearest thing to “home” for a newborn), skin to skin, baby wearing (get a soft stretchy sling for around the house, if you feel overwhelmed with choice the close caboo ring sling is quite an easy one to use and there’s lots of YouTube videos to show you what to do if you can’t get to a sling library).
Hold your baby, ignore anyone who says you’re making a rod for your back etc etc, be prepared that your baby will probably only want to sleep on you day and night to start with. They may hate their cot/pram/Moses basket/bouncy chair.... completely normal, although the refusing to sleep in the cot thing came as a shock to me. I naively assumed you fed baby, they fell asleep, you put them down and went to sleep yourself (my baby had other ideas!)
Never limit love, never limit cuddles. Respond to your babies needs, not the ones a book/MIL/stranger in the street has told you they should have and you’ll be fine. There are no shoulds with babies, they are all different.
Basically be prepared to spend the first 6-8 weeks getting to know your baby, sitting on the sofa breastfeeding a lot. Get a lot of snacks and box sets in. Get your partner to set up little feeding stations around the house and task him with keeping them stocked up with cereal bars, fruit, crisps, biscuits and water bottles.
Remember crying peaks around 7-8 weeks and this is a normal developmental process/period and not because you’re doing something wrong. Fussiness is observed in all infants even primates and is thought to be an important neurological developmental phase. Just hold your baby lots, BF and rock/shush and know that they are learning that you are there when they need you to soothe away their tears.
Once you come out the other side of the first 12 weeks they start to really wake up and take an interest and things get much more fun.
Don’t look to far ahead. One day at a time. They change so much everything is a phase. Even a poor sleeper will start sleeping at some point.
Good books I think for raising children in general are Heaven on Earth and Simplicity Parenting. But don’t stress about all that now. Good luck
I can't believe it's taken you 39 weeks to be terrified! I was terrified as soon as I got a line. As it turned out, it was fine. I was handed a baby and I looked at her and went 'ahhhh', it wasn't a mad rush of love, it just felt like I knew her and I'd never not had her. Like the love had always been there. When she was about 8mths my friend had a newborn and gave it to me and I panicked, held it at arms length and said 'I don't know what to do!'. When it's your own it's so different.
Then I had no2 3.5 years later and I panicked about not knowing what to do AND whether I could possibly love it as much as my 1st! He came, I did.
All normal OP, and do remember that everyone bonds in different ways and at different times so there is no proper normal anyway.
Definitely normal. It also hit me about a week before my due date that I had to somehow squeeze this 10lb human out my fanny.
I was very dramatic and cried my eyes out, but I had to resign myself to the fact it was coming out whether I liked it or not.
You'll be fine. I'm 4 months in and although I cried a lot for 2 weeks with the overwhelming 24-hourness of it then a bit less for 4 more weeks it starts to become the new normal pretty fast!
I felt like that walking out of the hospital with DS. I couldn't believe I was allowed to walk out with this tiny person I had no idea how to look after. I made all sorts of mistakes in the early days, but he is still here to tell the tale, and is happy and healthy too. I think most people just make it up as they go along. Luckily babies are actually pretty tough!
It was normal for me on my first. When my waters broke on my first I sobbed been admitted, the midwife thought DP was annoying me, when I reassured her I was really scared to be a DM she gave me a hug, it was lovely.
DD1 was a lovely peaceful baby it came very natural and easy. I am glad I didn't have DS first, I probably would have stayed crying.
Yep, you have never been a mum before so of course it is daunting. But the fact that you are worried shows that you are invested in doing well at it. With number 2 I then had the panic that I couldn't love him as much as the first one, but of course I do.
Yes. I wanted to give birth to a dog rather than a baby.
You’re about to meet your best friend and you’ll learn together
I had my DS yesterday and absolutely felt the same way as you do right up to the moment I gave birth, today I can't imagine life without him. I promise the minute you see him that fear will disappear
I did too. I sat on my bed and sobbed. It's so overwhelming.
But it honestly just felt natural and it all just clicked into place.
Now I have a toddler and I miss the newborn days so much.
Enjoy them while they last!
YANBU, everyone does this. You're going to be fine.
YANBU. It's a really scary overwhelming life changing thing. Just do it the way you want to. No harm will come to your baby if you don't get on with babywearing or don't buy him or her Frugi puddlesuits or a jumparoo or whatever. It's ok not to bf if you don't want to. It's ok not to go to baby massage and baby sensory etc. Baby won't miss out if you just watch box sets all day. The only thing that's really important is that you cuddle them lots, feed them when they're hungry and prioritise getting as much sleep as you can.
You're entering the most special, amazing, scary, wonderful time of your life
I literally forgot DD needed feeding for a few hours after she was born! Midwifes and nurses all too busy and think they just assumed I was BF. It eventually dawned on me but I still feel guilty about it now she’s a teen think I was slightly out of my mind!
Feed ‘em, clean ‘em, love ‘em and you’ve got most of it covered.
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