Finding ourselves pregnant is a momentous occasion. It is a time when we realise that our lives are going to change radically but we can’t know exactly how, particularly with our first child. Even when we planned our pregnancy, it can still take us by surprise. It is exciting to know that we will have a baby. Knowing that we will meet our own child in less than nine months time can be both wonderful and surreal. We have a hope and an investment in the future was not there before.
Feeling excited or pleased is what we tend to expect when we find out we are going to have a baby but the reality for many of us is that it can also come with other feelings too. At any point in life, facing the unknown can be scary and it is no different with having children.
Our life experiences lead us to have expectations of what is to come and it is inevitable that some of us (if not all of us) have our concerns or doubts at times.Mixed feelings about having a baby are normal. Click To Tweet
Mixed feelings about having a baby are completely normal. Many of the women I interviewed spoke of moments when, during their pregnancies, they felt daunted or worried about having a baby. Maybe it was concern about managing a baby, about coping financially or about being good enough as a mother.Very little of life is black and white including our feelings about motherhood. Click To Tweet
Having mixed feelings is a part of life. We are all have complex feelings around many of our life experiences. There is rarely a situation where we can be absolute about anything. For example, if asked, I would say that I love my job as counsellor which is true much of the time. But, there are moments that I find it challenging and others when I doubt myself. There is a maturity in accepting the complexities of what life has to offer us. Very little of living is black and white.
As a part of pregnancy some of us can experience those mixed feelings with concern. Some of my mothers feared that it might mean that they wouldn’t love their babies or even want them. Some thought it was a sign that they were not ready.
But motherhood is no different to any other part of life. And in fact, being able to recognise and hold on to conflicting emotions simultaneously is a skill that helps rather than hinders, particularly when raising a child. Motherhood is full of contradictory feelings that, with time, we learn to contend with. With a child in our charge we can feel more powerful and more vulnerable. We can feel more enlivened and connected to life but also more detached and tired. We can feel great love and at the same time great frustration. Our children can be a joy and a sorrow (and of course everything in-between).
So if you are pregnant and you are experiencing mixed emotions or if you look back on your pregnancy and feel bad for having complex feelings, then know that you are not alone. Of course, if these feelings are bothering you sharing them with a trusted person who listens and respects you will be of benefit. Or, writing down your feelings with a mind to where your fears may have originated from can help too.
I would love to hear how you feel about being pregnant or felt during your pregnancy. What mixed feelings do you (or did you) have? If you leave a comment below I will reply as soon as I can. Thanks for reading. Kirsten
So what is next?
If you liked this article then you may also like:
- First Pregnancy- Are You Already A Mother?
- Fantasies of Motherhood
- Comparing Ourselves To Other Mothers