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OH is stressed about pregnancy

(17 Posts)
MissClarke86 Wed 24-Aug-16 11:06:02

I'm feeling a bit blue today. I'm 11 weeks pregnant with my first and going through all the usual emotions - excitement, fear, worry, happiness, etc in a cycle.

OH is finding it very hard to be excited and is just stressing about this baby, but doesn't talk about his emotions very much. In honesty if I hadn't pushed for this, he would be more than happy plodding on with normal life. He just keeps saying "it'll be okay when it's here" but won't really engage in any other conversations about it.

My mum is very excited for us and has asked him if he's excited etc but he finds this really stressful and has now asked me to ask my mum to reign it in.

I want him to talk to me about his worries as it might help him, but at the same time I'm scared to do that because I don't think my responses will be rational! I need him to be with me on this, and am finding it hard that he is stressed out. Don't get me wrong he's supportive, but I don't think he shares any of the happiness with me yet.

I KNOW it's scary and stressful but I also want him to see how our lives will change for the better and how exciting it is. I actually just want him to give himself a kick up the arse! We have our 12 week scan next week and I'm just worried he's going to crumble when people know and are congratulating us etc. I want to be excited about this and am finding it hard because I don't want to stress him out further.

I just needed to vent here really...and wondered if any ladies had partners who were similar.

I'm sure once this baby comes he'll be fine but I'm just not sure how to handle it as normally I'd get him talking and offer solutions but I am too emotional about it all to be able to do that rationally!

MissClarke86 Wed 24-Aug-16 11:07:59

Just to add, I had a miscarriage earlier in the year and he shed a few tears about the baby then. It made me think that underneath all the stress there was some excitement there after all...

MrsBartlettforthewin Wed 24-Aug-16 11:13:01

Maybe once he knows everything is okay he won't be as stressed. Sorry to hear you miscarried, but this could account for his lack of excitement yet. He's not letting himself be excited just incase iyswim. Also for a lot of men it's not real until they see the scan or the actual baby when they're born.

sentia Wed 24-Aug-16 11:13:25

As the person who is actually pregnant, your emotions and needs should be paramount here. Of course you want to support him, he's your partner, but don't do it at the expense of having your needs met. He's a grown man who is about to become a father, he can handle the stress (or learn to).

MrsBartlettforthewin Wed 24-Aug-16 11:24:09

Yes what sentia said. If he doesn't snap out of it once it is clear everything is alright then he will need a kick up the arse and you being frank with him about how his stressing is affecting you. Congratulations btw.

MissClarke86 Wed 24-Aug-16 11:26:34

I don't think that's it Mrs, I'm the one stressing that things won't go well and he's very confident and thinks everything will be fine.

I think his worries come down to finance (it will be tight but we will manage) and whether or not he can actually do it. He knows no small children and feels awkward around them having had no experience. I also imagine he's worried about how his life will change. He just has no prior experience to "hook" any excitement onto, if that makes sense? I teach and have met some amazing children and can't wait to share experiences with my own, so have a different background. His only experience of children is hearing them screaming in restaurants!

Thank you for that Sentia I needed to hear that!

MrsBartlettforthewin Wed 24-Aug-16 12:05:57

I see. Is he the sort who would respond to having your finances layer out in a spread sheet so he can visualise the out goes in coming and physically see that you will be fine? I'm the one who stresses about money in our house so I put it all into a spread sheet as it helps to see it.

On the actually do it front does he have any mates with kids who will talk to him honestly about it and point out that no one knows what they're doing at first and how it is totally different when it's your own baby?

junebirthdaygirl Wed 24-Aug-16 12:37:18

The nature of life is that people take on a different stance to balance out the other person Inn the relationship. So if you are all nervous, anxious and excited he will, without thinking balance out that by being all cool and low key. Two anxious people together is not a good mix. So just bear with him and as your emotions steady he hopefully will become more excited.
Men often only go into that excitement when baby arrives as they find it hard to imagine what it will be like.
So don't over think this. Just enjoy your own excitement for now.

Nottalotta Wed 24-Aug-16 13:02:40

My husband was feliway ambivalent for at least the first half of the pregnancy. It's as if it's not happening to them. For me, it was all and everything I could think about. He just carried on as normal. The first scan helped, he was truly amazed by that and did get rather emotional. I'm sure things will improve once he can 'see' baby at scans, and you develop a bump.

onecrazycook Wed 24-Aug-16 16:35:06

I'm going through very similar. My Husband is very unhappy about my pregnancy (6 weeks). He didn't speak to me for 4 days once I told him (as if I had planned the pregnancy- I absolutely did not), and now he's swinging between moody and ignoring the issue.

We are in a bit of a situation where our landlord defaulted on his mortgage so we are living with his parents until we sort out somewhere to live, so the timing is not the best, but his primary focus seems to be how determined he is that his life will not change and he can still go the football with his mates etc. He's going on about not being able to afford a child. Every time I mention I feel a bit unwell he asks me if I'm sure I want to keep it.

I'm stressed and upset because I never imagined he'd be like this sad he's 40 ffs.

Trifleorbust Wed 24-Aug-16 17:08:39

Sounds like my husband - I was much more excited than him. But as the pregnancy has progressed he has become more interested and is starting to seem protective and a bit nervous but in a good way. I think it can be difficult for men because they don't go through all the physical changes; it takes them longer for it to sink in.

TheInimitableMrsFanshawe Wed 24-Aug-16 17:32:02

My husband was feliway ambivalent for at least the first half of the pregnancy. It's as if it's not happening to them

The trouble is, it's not happening to them. A total lack of engagement is one of a range of normal reactions. They simply don't (can't even) understand how you're feeling, physically and emotionally.

Getting stressed is also a normal reaction, they're concerned about having to provide for you and the baby, look after you both etc. Even if you don't have that very traditional gender split in your relationship, a pregnancy can make their hunter/gatherer instincts emerge.

NickiFury Wed 24-Aug-16 17:35:24

I would dump your husband and go it alone to be honest onecrazycook. I think you need on start a thread of your own....

MissClarke86 Wed 24-Aug-16 19:04:00

Thank you for all your responses ladies, you have made me feel better. I had a chat with him after work and just said if he wants to talk I'm here and he said he's fine it's just going to be such a big life change. We had a little chat and i said although it's a big change I hope he'd be able to feel some excitement at some point and he said he would. He's not really one to discuss feelings so I didn't push it any further than that!

I said if he was stressed about finance etc that he needed to talk to me because I have got spreadsheets etc sorted out because I'm the one who manages all of that, but I don't think it's that - it's just how his life will change which he'll just have to get used to!!

onecrazycook I'm really sorry to hear your situation. Your husband sounds likes he's being quite unkind to you and I hope you're okay. I think you need to be frank with him - he's in this with you and you didn't make this baby alone. It's okay to be scared and worried but not okay to treat you unkindly.

MrsBartlettforthewin Wed 24-Aug-16 19:37:24

Glad to hear you were able to have a chat with him OP, he'll get his head round it soon.

Newmum90 Thu 25-Aug-16 12:02:11

I can identify with this. Im 33 weeks, unplanned pregnancy.

OH was nothing short of a nightmare ("i love you and want to be with you but this is massive mistake, how can you do this to us.) re : pregnancy for the first 12 weeks until the first scan. Scan completely amazed him. He then settled into being very stressed about it (not really engaging, not much excitement) until about 23 weeks when i started properly showing, his sister had a baby and we started antenatal classes. The combination of events kicked him into man mode and hes been a gem ever since.

Im not excusing their behaviour but i do genuinely think blokes are the weaker sex when it comes to pregnancy! Its really, really foreign and scary for them because they dont experience the hormonal changes we do when baby is concieved. I can honestly say that my brain and body both changed pretty much immediately and irreversibly when i fell pregnant. This is not something our OHs go through and as much as they may love us and want to be there for us (and may even want the baby!)- its a massive change for them to adjust to. They dont have ANY control over the situation and mother nature doesnt give them the same helping hand we get. they cant SEE any changes except a very hormonal very DIFFERENT gf or wife with completely realigned priorities! If they dont usually cope with stress or emotion well it can manifest itself in all sorts of out of character, sometimes, ugly, ways.

To some extent after countless arguments, tears and people sleeping on the couch with my OH over whether he was excited enough or really wanted to be part of the pregnancy (i felt his lack of excitement showed a lack of support) i had to just accept that he was a little bit mentally "behind" where i was about the whole thing and actually needed a bit of help to get there!

Stuff i found helpful:

- spending time with other pregnant people or family / friends to talk about baby and pregnancy things while OH caught up! Having somebody close but not judgemental to vent your frustrations to might help too!
- bringing OH to hospital visits etc. Understanding the process and learning about it made him much more curious, interested and confident!
- finding out the gender (helped oh to imagine baby as an actual person and the fun stuff we could do together)
- scans!
- prominently displaying scan pictures, ours is on the fridge!
- naming the baby (even a nickname)
- talking about something your OH can offer to baby that perhaps would be special to him or that you wouldnt ordinarily be able to offer. I mentioned passively very early on that id like my OH to build babys cot for the nursery as he is a joiner and was touched to discover, when months later i mentioned we needed to get organised about buying one he was VERY defensive about this as hed secretly been drawing up plans (complete with a hilarious scale drawing of me standing beside the cot!)
- OH's family and friends gave him a boot up the bum
- time!

LynseyH Thu 25-Aug-16 12:10:27

Hello missclarke. I hope your chat with your partner has helped. Just wanted to let you know my partner isn't an emotional type of person either and doesn't show excitement. Although mc can make them wary, I had kids with mine before I had a mc and he only really showed any type of enthusiasm when baby was visibly kicking.
Everyone said to him, wait till you see the baby born, you'll cry then. He didn't! But when baby was here, if I said I was putting him down, he'd say no, he wanted him! He shadowed me with everything and was very hands on that way.
This time round, after the 2 mc, he's wary, doesn't talk much about it but I know it'll all work out in the end. We went through a stinking stage not long ago and I thought our relationship was over, I guess each day as it comes is a good step. Really hope things improve :-)

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