Imagine enduring intense pain and finally getting to see and hold your baby. It’s one of those moments that you will cherish forever, right? Well, no! Chances are you will either be under the influence of heavy medications or pass out after the delivery. So it’s not very hard to understand why some new moms struggle to find affection for their newborns. It is not just the delivery process that makes you question your abilities in motherhood; many other factors have a hand in it. So, does that make you a bad mom? Absolutely NOT. Roughly 40% of new moms report feeling nothing but ambivalence when they first lay eyes on their child (1). But there’s no need to feel bad about it; it takes time. Perhaps one day, that tiny bundle of joy will give you a toothless grin, and it will get your heart racing. Here in this article, we’ll discuss why some new mothers might not immediately fall in love with their newborns and why it is perfectly normal. Read on to know them all.
1. They Are No Longer The Same Person
A mother who has recently given birth may be confronted with the stark reality that her whole world changed the instant her baby was born. They have altered her social status, personal history, and potential in the wake of becoming a mother. The rate at which everything changed may leave them feeling bewildered and frightened.
2. Baby Blues Could Be Creeping In
A majority of new mothers experience what is called baby blues, a period of emotional instability shortly after giving birth (2). It lasts for around two weeks after giving birth. If it continues for much longer, it might indicate postnatal depression, and the new mother should see a doctor (3). The sudden hormonal changes prepare the body to care for their babies, which may cause women to experience baby blues. Differences in lifestyle, such as an interruption in one’s ability to get sufficient sleep because of a new kid, may also contribute to this.
3. Childbirth Has A Lasting Effect On Them
It might be difficult for some new moms to regain their strength after giving birth. This is particularly true for first-time moms who had a painful delivery. It is also true for those who had to have a C-section, whose kids were delivered early, or who needed emergency surgery.
4. They May Be Hindered By Their Own Prior Experiences
New mothers who have suffered from depression, mental illness, miscarriage, or abuse may have difficulty developing an instant bond with their infants (3). Studies have also shown that up to 4% of mothers get PTSD after childbirth (4). And if they do, it is essential to go through regular medical counseling to overcome childbirth’s fear and trauma.
5. Difference In Expectations
Women planning pregnancies often have ideas about what it would be like to give birth, but the actual event might differ from what they pictured. For instance, if they had to have a cesarean delivery when they’d hoped to give birth without medical intervention, they might feel ashamed and guilty about the experience. They may start being harsh with themselves, making it difficult to form a loving bond with their newborns.
6. Slow Bonding Is Perfectly Normal
You may find that other family members are far more doting and enthusiastic about your newborn than you are, making you doubt your mothering abilities. But if such a thought creeps into your head, you must drive it out immediately. Media and public opinion have conditioned us to believe that we are supposed to have loving emotions after the birth of our child. But the truth is, you may not experience instant maternal love for the firstborn; the same could be with the second or third born. On the other hand, it could be that you are going through a terrible patch in your life and your child’s birth makes you think of all the hardships that are now added to your life.
Many new moms have confessed that it was not until the 3rd or 5th month that they finally developed a connection with their child. You feel obligated to care for them while they are tiny and can do little to assist themselves. Once the little one starts interacting with you, you are bound to fall for their cuteness.
No one said motherhood is easy. From the moment you conceive your baby, life is never the same. Some find this change daunting and may panic the moment they realize they have a baby to take care of. However, it does not have to be that perplexing as mothers through generations have parented their kids with whatever resources they had. From pregnancy to recovering from giving birth, everything is painful, so there is no need to romanticize the pain. It’s taxing on your body and your emotions. The trick to keeping your calm is being patient with yourself. If it takes time for any relationship, including motherhood, to mature into something stable and long-lasting. And if you don’t feel the proper connection, it does not make you a bad mother. So, what was your first thought when you held your baby? Let us know in the comments section! Take care.