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They tell me the love will come, but when?

(43 Posts)
moodywren Sat 10-Feb-07 09:16:32

I have a 5 week old baby and I don't love him. I don't even think I like him very much. He's my 4th baby and with my others I loved them even before they were born. I feel nothing for him. HV says the love wil come, when I talked to the midwife she said I needed to get more sleep.
If he wasn't here I wouldn't miss him.
What if I never feel anything

MamazonAKAfatty Sat 10-Feb-07 09:28:25

hun you need to speak again with your HV.

You may be suffering from post natal depression. I have no direct experiance but i know that feelings like those you are describing are quite common if you have PND.

you do love him, you just may not realise it just yet because of the hormones still flying about in your body.
Im a bit pants at this as i dont know to much about it but no doubt someone with a good amount of advice will come along soon.

Notquitesotiredmum Sat 10-Feb-07 09:32:04

No great words of wisdom but didn't want to leave your post unanswered. My only experience is that with my ds2 I never got the rush of love that I felt with my first, it just sort of crept up on me. I don't think I really felt that I loved him, until the first shock, when he was ill, and vulnerable, and then I realised that I had been loving him for a while, after all.

I'm not surprised that with three older children to look after you may not have time to feel the same as you did before. I take my hat off to anyone who can cope with such a houseful!

I wonder if there are any undealt with issues affecting you too: are there financial concerns now that you have another little one? Was the birth particularly difficult? Was this baby planned or a surprise?

You are clearly worried about how you are feeling and your hv's advice doesn't seem particularly helpful. More sleep is a good solution to most things, but if you are still worried, then don't let her fob you off. This can be a symptom of PND, for which you will be able to get help and support if you still feel unhappy. And, of course, there will be other posters along with more valuable advice soon too.

HTH - off to Sainsbury's now, but will try to check in later.

moodywren Sat 10-Feb-07 09:33:40

I had problems during the pregnancy, a threatened miscarridge, car accident, salmonella poisoning. When he was born he took a long time to breathe properly then stopped breathing the next day and had to be rushed into hospital. HV says I am probably reacting to that and not getting attached to him so if something happened to him I wouldn't get hurt.

nearlythree Sat 10-Feb-07 09:36:07

Agree totally with notquitesotiredmum. Are you bf? If not maybe some St. Johns Wort might help in the short term.

Sleep is important, but so is getting some decent help and advice. The love will come, but maybe you will need some help getting there.

lulumama Sat 10-Feb-07 09:38:08

sounds very much like you need to work through all the traumas that happened when you were pregnant, maybe you were so scared of losing him , that now he is here, you are too frightened to believe he is ok ? and you are scared to get attached to him?

be kind to yourself, you have had a horrible time

take the pressure off, and just get through the day

nearlythree Sat 10-Feb-07 09:41:35

moodywren, now I see. I've been there twice, once with dd1 when she nearly died at birth, and again with dd2 when she had a meningitis scare the day after ds was born. In dd1's case it took me a couple of months to get attached to her - I used to dream about her dying. In dd2's case I couldn't bond with her when we got back from the hospital and it took a few months before I could be a proper mum to her again .

Your reactions are normal, it is your mind's way of coping with the fear of loss. You may need something to help you through but IME it just took time - time really does heal. And you may want to think about having some counselling, you have been through a very traumatic experience. HTH and if you want to chat, please CAT me.

Notquitesotiredmum Sat 10-Feb-07 12:03:26

Echoing nearlythree and lulamamas excellent advice to you. What a time you have been having!! No wonder your feelings are not following a normal pattern. This was not a very normal nine months for you.

Sending very best wishes for you. Can't add any more to what has been said below.

MuffinMclay Sat 10-Feb-07 19:43:08

Moodywren there may be something in what your hv says. I didn't bond with ds at all for weeks and also had a difficult pregnancy followed by him going into scbu for 5 days (and stopping breathing several times, once we thought he was a gonner).

Until he was about 6 weeks old I felt nothing at all (like having an alien in the house) at best, and wished someone would take him away most of the time.

Things got better at 6 weeks when he started smiling and then much better at about 12 weeks, at about the point where I started to get more sleep. The love thing sort of crept up on me at that point, and now I can't imagine being without him.

I'm sure yuo will feel something at some point. Feel free to CAT me if there is anything I can do to help. It is the most awful feeling, isn't it.

mumtogusnalbie Sat 10-Feb-07 20:10:16

Hi Moodywren - really sorry to hear that you had such a hard pregnancy. Just wanted to say that after DS2 was born i didn't love him and just went through the motions with him really - me and DS1 used to say "Albies crying again" and just leave him to it. I can't believe that I felt that way now but I know that I did. It wasn't until DS2 was about 7-8mths old that I started to love him and now (at 3) he is just the most gorgeous, cute (and naughty!!) boy in the world. I now love both my boys more than anything in the world but it wasn't always like that. Talk to your HV again but don't worry - I'm sure the love will come soon. Good luckxxxx

mum03 Sat 10-Feb-07 21:28:28

moodywren, loving your child does not necessarily come naturally like the films and books all suggest. When my ds was born I felt nothing for him, it was like he was someone-elses baby, I kept expecting someone to come and take him away, i felt like a babysitter rather than a mother. It was not until he was about 4 months old that I finally admitted it to my sister, who just stated that she never felt that instant love with any of her three children, it happened gradually over time, I think it was not until my ds was about 7 months or so that I could start to say that if someone took him away that I would fight to keep him, then I started to feel more loving to him. I wonder now whether it was some postnatal depression at the time, but I don't know and now he is 3 years old and I know I love him.

I hope that you take it easy on yourself and try not to feel too bad about your not feeling anything for him yet. We don't all get love at first sight, but just let it happen in its own time, you can't make it happen any faster. You will grow to love him in time, it takes time.

moodywren Sun 11-Feb-07 05:15:08

Thats exactly how I feel, if I didn't know better I would say that he was someone elses. Its only because I had a homebirth that I know he is mine.

ghosty Sun 11-Feb-07 06:24:10

I felt like that Moodywren. But DS was my first. I had severe postnatal depression (diagnosed when DS was 8 weeks old).
I felt incredible responsibility for DS but not 'love' like I expected it to be. It was awful. But I will honestly say that he kind of 'grew' on me ... and when he was about 6 months I realised I loved him more than life itself and that I was his slave forever more
It was made more strange when DD was born 4 years later and I had all the 'normal' and expected love and bonding that I didn't have with DS (I didn't have PND with DD) and I felt terribly terribly guilty about DS.
I would say that you may well have PND perhaps you may need a bit more support. Have you been to see your GP (I found "The love will come" comment from my HV totally useless btw)

3LoveHeartsAndNoMore Sun 11-Feb-07 18:16:49

((((((moodywren)))))) I really think it's the traumatic time you had with him that you are reacting too.
I found it very hard to bond with ds3, after a traumatic Birth which ended in unwanted Emergency C-section (had laboured lovely at home as he was meant to be my Homebirth)...I looked at him, and he looked the spitting image of my other 2, but he didn't feel like he was mine....iykwim....
It took me a long time to bond with him, but we got there in the end.
I found the guilt over the way I felt so bad..I was beating myself up so much about feeling like that, but in the end, that really didn't help anything, if anything that made it worse and prolonged the bonding process.
I really think that if you give it time enough the love will come...

twinsetandpearls Sun 11-Feb-07 18:32:55

I didn't love dd until she was quite old,infactuntil she was about two and was quite ambivalent about her, I used to spend hours dreamiong whatlife would be like without her. I did suffer from postnatal and beacse a single mum very unexpectadly and had to deal with everything from a violent ex to being homeless. I am now part of a very loving very happy family.

But even without my difficult circumstances I have wondered if I would have loved dd at the beginning, I think love is not an automatic response and comes with time, why should you love a baby that gives you nothing other than sleepness nights and stretch marks. Although you say you have loved your others from before they were born so maybe it is a touch of baby blues if not depression.

twinsetandpearls Sun 11-Feb-07 18:34:17

I do think it is a reaction to your birth and the other events mentioned, I didn;t have a truanatic birth expereince although I was very unprepared and fpund the whole process horrifying and was told that was a factor in my PND.

blobsmummy Mon 12-Feb-07 13:45:03

Big hug to you MoodyWren. I had horrible pregnancy and birth, and when DD was born, i didn't want her anywhere near me. Even though we'd tried for 3 years to have her & i knew that the things that had gone wrong weren't her fault, she seemed to represent all the pain I was in. I felt soooo guilty, as people kept saying how lucky I must feel, but I didn't even like her let alone love her.

She was about 12 weeks old when I finally felt something for her - it had taken that long for her to grow on me and to put some of the trauma behind me. I probably realised that she was the most brilliant baby on earth when she was about 4 months old.

It's simply not true that you have to love you baby straight away. Don't feel guilty or dwell on it, just give yourself loads of time.

moodywren Mon 12-Feb-07 18:05:38

My dh has finally realised how bad I am feeling. He said to me today that I don't seem very maternal towards our baby.
I've only been telling him that for the last 5 weeks.

3LoveHeartsAndNoMore Mon 12-Feb-07 19:15:12

Men, they don't take hints, they really don't...
How are you feeling today?

moodywren Mon 12-Feb-07 19:30:43

I feel guilty that I don't love him, he's more demanding than my other children which isn't helping, I find it really hard to get wind out of him and breastfeeding seems harder this time. I've been feeling low today so maybe it is pnd although if it is pnd wouldn't I be more tearful and feeling really depressed? And shouldn't my hv have picked up on it?
Thanks to everyone for your replies its good to feel I am not alone.

3LoveHeartsAndNoMore Mon 12-Feb-07 19:53:14

You can't help how you feel, only how you act on it, iykwim.
My last child, the one that I had the bonding issues with, was, incidentally also the most difficult of my children...which just isn't helpful at all, is it!
Must say, I personally thing, that the fact I bf'ed him really did help me bonding, as it required our closeness....and I think if I hadn't bf'ed him, the guilt would have consumed me, as I do feel very strong about bf.

nearlythree Mon 12-Feb-07 20:11:42

moodywren, if you are tired and low then everything will feel worse. Re the pnd thing...I'm not sure labels are all that helpful, IME what you are feeling is a natural reaction to the terrible time that you have had. I think 5 wks is a bit soon for a firm pnd diagnosis. That's not to say that you might not benefit from seeing your gp or a counsellor at some point.

suziewoo13 Mon 12-Feb-07 20:29:02

I'm sure that in time you will bond with your son. It is amazing how they become much more annimated with time. At 5 weeks they just demand the whole time. I didn't have that wave of love when my DD was born and often wondered in the early days if someone took her away would I actually miss her. I wasn't pn depressed just curious as to when this wash of love would come. You know from your other children that it does come so hang on in their. I have had quite a significant amount of depression episodes in my life (pre motherhood) and I don't I don't think that crying is always indicative of depression. I found that it was my thought processing and ability to make any choices that were very profoundly upset. When I couldn't decide on which can of tuna to buy it was time to go back on the ADs. Keep being truthfull to those around yo and don't be afraid to seek help. Good luck.

nearlythree Mon 12-Feb-07 22:21:41

I remember feeling absolutely paralysed, just picking my baby up was an effort. With dd2, I couldn't leave my bedroom to go and see her. Wouldn't wish feeling like that on anyone. Hope you get better soon - crying helps, IME.

moodywren Wed 14-Feb-07 20:28:37

What is there to love about him? All he does is cry, feed, throw up on me, explode his nappies so I'm covered in poo, and stop me sleeping. My breasts are killing me, went back to dr today who told me to just keep taking antibiotics even though I am convinced they're not working and to just take painkillers to stop the pain. Told dh I wish I'd had an abortion. (He was really upset with me) Think I'll buy some bottles and formula tomorrow. Which is the best formula can anyone recommend one?

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