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Bringing baby home - hormonal and hysterical

(41 Posts)
belindarose Fri 31-Jul-09 10:08:12

I'm a newish poster but 9 month lurker, hoping for some advice.
I thought I'd done quite well with avoiding hormonal tantrums and irrational fears, but they've hit heavily now (38 weeks). I am really upset and worried about the thought of the first few days after baby is born and bringing her home. I am absolutely dreading having visitors here, even my parents and in-laws. Both sets are lovely, I just cannot stand the thought of them being here while we're trying to establish breastfeeding, while I'm recovering from birth, pain etc. Every time I think about it I cry. It's completely ruining any excitement about the new baby. I particularly don't want them to be here when we actually come into the house for the first time.
I'm sure I'm being completely unreasonable. Husband does sort of feel the same and would prefer us to be on our own, but we know we can't upset them by telling them not to come for a few days (and anyway, I'm then dreading the day the milk 'comes in' and how I'll cope with that with visitors being around). He says they'll probably be helpful, and I'm sure they will by making meals, washing up etc, but it doesn't stop me feeling so awful about it.
There, I have a dripping wet keyboard now. Please someone help me pull myself together. Everyone is so excited about the baby and I don't want to ruin it, but nor do I want to spoil those first days for me and the baby.

chimchar Fri 31-Jul-09 10:15:05

awww. i was exactly the same (and sadly i continued to feel like this for a long while afterwards) i would suggest letting the inlaws and your folks come to visit you in hospital for the first visit or two, and then see how you go when you come hospital, visiting is restricted to a certain number of people and to certain is managable.

at home, ask people to call before visiting, and get your dh to set up a sort of diary so that people come when you want them to...

my friends did a great thing..they went to visit people with their new meant they were in control of who they saw, when and for how long....its also a good excuse to be spoiled for an hour or two in other peoples homes...a nice reason to get out if you fancy a change of scenery...

on the other hand, you might feel absolutly great and be dying to show off your new baby....

chin up..won't be long now! x

lucasnorth Fri 31-Jul-09 10:15:08

Sorry you're upset. Could you compromise by inviting both sets of parents to visit while you're still in hospital (which would very likely also be before your milk comes in, although you would be feeding colostrum)? And explain that you'd like a week or so at home as a family before they come to visit there?

That way they get to see their new grandchild, and you get a little privacy at home.

Good luck

lucasnorth Fri 31-Jul-09 10:15:49

Ah, sorry. cross posted with chimchar. Glad we agree though grin

belindarose Fri 31-Jul-09 10:19:36

Thanks. I think they'll be staying for longer though. Both sets of parents live over 3 hours away. The in-laws will even be cancelling their holiday if baby is born when they should have been going away (if they are on holiday - France - they plan on driving straight back). I don't think I'll be in hospital very long (if all goes well) as they've closed half the beds here and are kicking people out in record time.
Good point that I might be feeling absolutely fine... hard to see that right now though.

Miamla Fri 31-Jul-09 10:22:37

i had very similar worries to you. not sure how long i've got before DS wakes so i'll try and be brief!
re coming home to empty house... completely agree, no reason at all why anyone should be there. you could just be vague about what time you're leaving the hospital and therefore what time you'll be home.

re early visitors. pils leave miles away, my parents are close. my lot came round after work (DS was born on a wednes) for an hour or so and it was really nice seeing them all. i was on such a high from the birth still that i don't think DP could have coped with me bouncing round the place on our own!

re milk coming in.. again, this was a big worry. pils wanted to visit straightaway (understandably) but i didn't want them staying with us on day 3 after birth. it was left that they'd come down the 2nd weekend after birth. well, i relented, changed my mind once DS was here and they did come down when he was 3 days old. i had a bit of a cry (from the sudden flood of hormones) but it was actually ok.

as for next time if/when DC2 comes about... not sure, was really lovely having my family there and hence, don't feel its fair to block out pil. but, i would absolutely definitely not have them stay with us. that was too much.

my advice is tell them all that you're not sure how you're going to cope with the hormones after birth so can you play it by ear? tell them you understand that they all want to see new baby but at the same time, you hope that they'll understand that you need to be relaxed and comfortable to get bf established. in the meantime they can help by making some meals for you to put in your freezer

just remember, you and DH are the boss of the situation and its up to you to tell people what you want/don't want. don't leave it up to others to try and guess your thoughts/feelings

and lastly... i hope you have a really lovely, positive birth experience. mine was truly wonderful and i'm envy that you've got it all to look forward to. my DS was 1 yesterday and it all seems so long ago already.

<wanders off wondering how to approach the subject of DC2 with DP>

shonaspurtle Fri 31-Jul-09 10:23:34

It seems to be so personal from reading posts on here, but this is my experience.

I found being in hospital quite overwhelming and lonely after dh went home at night so I looked forward to visiting times. It was ideal because they were short and as specific times.

At home, we did have quite a lot of visitors over the first few days but never more than one lot per day and never for more than one hour. I didn't actually have to make any arrangements about this - people were very considerate and phoned first to make sure it was ok to come and never hung about too long (maybe me sitting in my pjs looking like a road accident hurried them along wink.

Again, I found the first few days/weeks with the 24hr schedule of a newborn very long and some new faces, to get a bit of conversation and show off ds, were actually really welcome.

If you really don't want visitors then you shouldn't have them but maybe if you have some ground rules like a manageable number at a time, a set length of time to stay with dh primed to make hints when that time is up, you can make the decision when the baby's actually here and you know what you're up for.

Good luck!

oopsacoconut Fri 31-Jul-09 10:23:48


I was exactly the same about my IL's (my parents were overseas) they wanted to be there when we got home but I put my foot down. They came to see DD in the hospital the day she was born, strict 6-7.30 visiting hours, then when we went home I said no visitors until my parents arrived 2 days later. MIL cried at me on the phone about my selfishnessshock I got BF established, sat about in my PJ's, DH ran around after me, we had some amazing family time just sitting in bed watching DD wriggle and snort. It was the perfect start to our life as a family.

You need to explain to them what you and DH want and lay down the ground rules for those first days now, don't leave it until you are post birth hormonal and just give in for some peace.

Miamla Fri 31-Jul-09 10:25:04

ooh, i x posted with everyone!

DS was only 5hrs old when we left the hospital but visits there are a great idea (if practical given how far away they are)

shonaspurtle Fri 31-Jul-09 10:26:17

re: your parents/inlaws living far away. I think that is a case of having to think of yourself.

I do think it's reasonable to tell them that you'll be keeping visits short for the first little while and they should plan their visits based on that, ie if they're not prepared to work around that then they should maybe hold off for a bit.

1dilemma Fri 31-Jul-09 10:28:54

I sympathise
I don't get this irrational visiting by people when someone has a new born
(I totally understand wanting to see the baby)

all you can do is lay down the ground rules

1dilemma Fri 31-Jul-09 10:30:42

although I suspect the problem is compounded by 6 hour discharge which seems common now (when mothers/MIL were having children stays in hospital of 6-10 days were not uncommon I gather)

mrsjammi Fri 31-Jul-09 10:30:46

Message withdrawn

belindarose Fri 31-Jul-09 10:32:07

Thanks everyone. Nice to know that other people feel like this too. Still crying, but feeling a bit better.

GoldenSnitch Fri 31-Jul-09 10:36:10

I was in hospital for a couple of days and DS was my PIL's 6th Grandchild and my Mum lived 2 hours away so I think we had a really good start. We got a couple of days of short visits in hospital (although it was really lonely outside of visiting hours) and then got to go home on our own and have about 24 hours just being the 3 of us.

After that, I was actually quite grateful to have MIL around. She changed my bed and cooked us food (DH is a terrible cook) and held the baby for a little while so I could just veg and did not mind if I went back to bed while she was here. She even took washing away to do for us.

Just remember that no-one is expecting you to be a hostess - at least they shouldn't be! - and try to appreciate the help. If you want 24, 48, 72 hours alone, say so. Hopefully, they'll all be undertanding.

I wouldn't have any houseguests - get them to book into a B&B and send them on plenty of trips to the supermarket or to Mothercare to buy things to help you out. They'll feel useful and you'll get some time out.

LadyThompson Fri 31-Jul-09 10:45:29

Don't worry petal. You're not unreasonable! It is one time when people should allow you to be 'selfish' - (not that I think you are being so, I think if anything relatives who are insisting on being there are being selfish!)

Bringing your baby home is a special time for you, your DH and your baby. People should give you space. We made this very clear, and saw people when I was feeling better a few days later (I had a cs) - and this made me feel so much better. Explain to your DH you feel this strongly and leave him to explain tactfully to the relatives. You CAN tell them you want a couple of days to yourselves. It isn't ruining it for them!

pointydog Fri 31-Jul-09 10:46:04

agree with shona. Your dh could tell family that they can visit the hospital and give them visiting times (no trying to see you immediately after the birth!). Then he should try to organise one hour visits at home. Maybe that would keep your fears at bay.

cyteen Fri 31-Jul-09 10:46:57

lol at your last line Miamla! I caught myself about to blurt that very question out to DP last night shock

To the OP, please don't cry! There is lots of good advice here and I would second just playing it by ear. It's such a huge experience, giving birth, and a massive life change - it's impossible to predict what you and your DP will be feeling. As others have suggested, make sure you and DP are clear beforehand on the approach you're going to take and please don't feel guilted into anything you don't want. If ever there was a time in your life where it needs to be all about you-the-family, this is it.

Mine and DP's families both live about 100 miles away so there was no chance of them popping round, but even if there had been I would have asked them to wait for an invitation. I didn't know what kind of birth I was going to have or how I'd be feeling afterwards, and the thought of having this tiny new person all to ourselves was frankly terrifying, in an exhilarating sort of way.

As it happened the birth was fine, bringing DS home was fine and those first two weeks spent as a family of three were utterly magical. Like Miamla I'm a little bit envious of you getting to experience that - my boy is nearly 1, where does the time go?

Loopymumsy Fri 31-Jul-09 10:48:58

Message withdrawn

pointydog Fri 31-Jul-09 10:52:30

oh lord, no, don;t use swine flu as an excuse. That would really pee me off. Just be honest. Relatives love seeing a new baby, it's nice that they want to. Just restrict visits to something manageable.

shonaspurtle Fri 31-Jul-09 10:58:18

Also remember that being a bit hormonal, especially around day 3/4 is absolutely normal. I wept buckets when we got home from the hospital on day 3 because dh hadn't washed the dishes from the night before and I was bringing ds home to a "pigsty" (blush if you could see the place now..).

My friend banned visitors in the first week and then wept buckets because nobody came.

It's a crazy time! It's amazing as well though.

Lilybunny Fri 31-Jul-09 11:26:49

I'm so pleased to hear that you are thinking about visitors before your baby is born. That way things can be the way you choose them to be and you'll not be left with the same regrets about those early days that I have.

My IL's also live a good few hours away and came down the day after I got home from the hospital. They stayed with my mum but as soon as they got up in the mornings they all came over...and stayed all day! It was terrible sad I sort of felt that my DH got a bit side lined while all the parents were there too.

The early days with your baby are so precious and you can never get them back. Don't feel bad about asking people to give you a few days to yourselves. It's not selfish it makes good sense.

VeryHungryKatypillar Fri 31-Jul-09 12:58:18

Re your family living 3 hrs away - I was really up front with my mum saying that we would want to have lots of time on our own when the baby came and asked her to look into hotels/B&Bs to stay in. That way she would be visiting the house at set times, rather than there all the time. Best of both worlds I thought...

But then I had a c/s in the end, was in for three days so she stayed in our house for two nights and visited the hospital from here. Went home before we came home.

I know it's hard, but you've just got to tell them how you feel and be firm about it. You'll be a mum soon and you'll be the one in charge!

djfb Fri 31-Jul-09 15:11:58

I was exactly the same and due to an elective CS for breech at 39 weeks when both sets of grandparents had booked flights for after my due date we got to have a full week of it just being the 3 of us at home and it was really great. Especially for my DH as he really got a headstart on bonding with DS due to not having to entertain visitors.
I would also second the idea of bringing the baby to see people as then you're in control of how long and when you go.
And if you do have vistors to yours then you should entertain in your lounge and retire to bed for feeds or when you've had a enough. I never fed DS in front of guests as I prefered for it to be one on one bonding time with him.

So go with your gut, put your foot down and you can always chnage your mind if you feel differently after.

KatyS36 Fri 31-Jul-09 18:58:25


I feel exactly the same as you, and so does my husband. We have agreed that our rules are no visitors until we invite them, and we envisage that being after a week. We really want some time alone with the baby.

His parents, who are lovely and we believe will be really considerate will be invited after a week. they live 1.5 hours away.

My mum, who we expect to be less helpful, will be allowed to visit afterwards. She will need to fly and we're not letting her book tickets until after the baby is born - if it's late we don't want her being here as soon as he/she is born.

The one exception is my best friend locally, who if I'm wanting visitors will provide cooing on demand, not outstay her welcome, and would pretty much pick up and deliver anything we need.

I realise this sound selfish, but this is what we want. The run up to my wedding was spoilt by inconsiderate house guests. I'm not having this happen with my baby.

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