‘Your Baby Is Healthy, That’s All That Matters’

top 10.pngAnyone who has suffered with post-birth trauma has probably had this phrase chucked at them along with a handful of other unhelpful and isolating phrases.

Yes-ultimately, giving birth to a healthy baby is the main goal, but mum’s feelings are incredibly important too. If a mum doesn’t get the birth experience she longed for, if things went wrong during labour, or even if the birth went to plan; she can still suffer with a post natal mental health illness and she has every bloody right to feel sad and mournful, even if you don’t see ‘what the big deal is’.

Every woman has the right to make an informed decision on her birth plan and if her wishes and desires are ignored, belittled or have to change in an emergency then this can have a great impact on her mental health.

For example some mums want a home birth, some mums want a water birth, some mums want an epidural, some mums opt for a caesarean due to previous birth trauma, some mums want to free birth and if their plan is hindered then it can cause feelings of failure, guilt, grief, anger, isolation and in some cases it can even make a mum feel like she doesn’t love her child. (It is important to note that just because someone is suffering with PND or post natal trauma then it does not mean they don’t love their baby or that they have ill feelings towards their baby.)

Most of the time these feelings can be resolved within weeks or months at most with the correct support, information, therapy and love. But recovery and bonding with their baby can actually be pro longed if they feel isolated and are being made to feel worse than they already do.

I asked some women online about phrases that really affected them and made them feel worse and also prevented some from seeking help as they felt ashamed and guilty.

  • “Oh, other people would kill to be in your position!”
  • “Just put him on a bottle, you’ll get more sleep and feel better”
  • “These things happen”
  • “Well, at least they let you do things the easy way with the c-section”.
  • “My friend had pnd she found going for a walk really helped”
  • “He shouldn’t be with you if you’re feeling like that”
  • “You had an easy birth compared to some people, you should be happy!”

 

Every single birth and birth plan is different and no one should be made to feel ashamed for their feelings if they didn’t have the birth they wanted.

When my son was a newborn I couldn’t even think about the emergency caesarean without crying and feeling huge pangs of guilt. I felt like I had failed him. I don’t know why I felt this as I look up to other mums who have had caesareans and think they are amazing as the healing and recovery is awful.

I remember waking up when Freddie was 2 days old, we were back home by this point and I woke up in so much pain, I couldn’t even describe it. I waddled to the toilet balling my eyes out, I felt like I couldn’t survive. Those feelings probably seem so dramatic to some people but that doesn’t make my experience any less valid.

The emergency caesarean stopped me from bonding with my son for a while and if it wasn’t for breastfeeding him then I’m not sure how long it would have taken to bond with him! I felt good knowing that he NEEDED my milk to stay alive and that’s what got me through. When he was a few weeks old an overwhelming sense of love just hit me in the face and I knew right then that I loved him more than anything.

Don’t let anyone brush your feelings aside as if they do not matter. Because they DO. You matter, your birth matters and most of all the relationship between you and your baby matters.

 

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22 thoughts on “‘Your Baby Is Healthy, That’s All That Matters’

  1. Yes! A healthy baby is the most important thing – but not the ONLY important thing. Informing and respecting mothers before and during birth so often falls by the wayside, and then they’re told to ignore their humiliation or trauma and just be grateful for their healthy baby. Which only adds another layer of grief to what they’re already experiencing, because invariably what they hear through the newborn fog is ‘You’re being ungrateful, you bad selfish mother’. Great post!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Having a Healthy child is important to me but we can’t forget or neglect the mother. Giving birth is hard on her body. She will need support and help to get through this.

    Like

  3. My good friend’s sister took her own life because of postpartum depression. We need to stop referring to it as “the baby blues” and treat it seriously. Having a baby is a big deal and affects us all differently. We need to be honest about what we are going through.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Women should not feel ashamed about not being able to follow a specific birth plan. It’s not the plan that matters. It’s the end results.

    Like

  5. This is so important, I hope expecting parents read this before the time comes to welcome their baby. It’s no joke what women go through before, during, and after giving birth. That’s really something we should also pay attention to.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Listen I dont have kids yet but I already know my birth plan. I want a natural water birth with a midwife and a doula and I dont wanna be on my back in a cold heartless hospital. That is my right and I feel like so many American women do not know their birth rights! Serious…I think more and more woman are being harrassed to get a C-section in this country not because its necessary but because its faster and doctors can get the birthing process done quicker without having to wait on several womans body to do what its meant to do naturally. Also so many woman are brainwashed to put their babies on formula verses breastmilk and thats crap…when our bodies are made to produce milk. We need more nursing educational classes and birthing option classes. It would be less depressing moments…a woman feels better when she has a choice from the start not in a panic.

    Liked by 1 person

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