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Psychological Changes in First-Time Parents

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

For those of you having your first and the rest of you looking back on it, what kinds of mental changes did you go through? DH and I were talking the other day about some of the odd ways we're starting to think about and react to things differently.


We watch a fair amount of motocross/supercross racing and DH confessed that suddenly he can't watch the wrecks. It never bothered him before this, and now it practically makes him sick to his stomach! As for myself, I seem to be much more morbid and neurotic. Last weekend I was flying and I was at the back of the plane with 3 infants and two toddlers in close proximity. I ran through an entire hypothetical plane crash several times in my head and thought about how I would have to make sure all of those babies were safe before I exited the plane. 


I also remember talking with DH some time ago about self defense and he told me how the quickest way to kill someone without a weapon would be to (this is extremely gross and disturbing) shove your thumb into their eye socket and swirl it around in there as quickly as possible. When he told me that, I was disgusted and shocked and thought that I could never do such a thing. Then after being pregnant, I remember walking out of a store late at night and passing a really creepy-looking dude and it got my hackles up. I immediately ran through a scenario in my head and the thought of using the eye-gauging technique suddenly seemed like a very easy thing to do! 


I used to be so easy going and naive and now I've suddenly turned into a suspicious, hyper-aware crazy woman. 


Anyone else experience this?

post #2 of 7

I've had nightmares that were far more graphic and disturbing than I thought my mind was even capable of.  Some of them I can still remember in perfect chilling detail weeks later.  For a few weeks I was having them quite often and thought I had some kind of undiagnosed mental disturbance, haha.  I'm fine now :)


I'm much more cautious physically, around ladders, on my bike, when the steps of our building are wet etc.  I was hanging out with my friend and her four boys (ages 2-7), we went for a walk in the forest but right on the edge of a lake, and I was pretty on edge until we all got home safely - granted, there are four of them! they're kind of wild, and she is a lot more relaxed than I am, so they were running around everywhere even the very littles.  Every time I put my seatbelt on I look at where it is on my stomach/lap and think about the damage that would be inflicted on my kiddo if I were to get into an accident. 

I am finding that when it comes to friends, family, and acquaintances, I am either pulling people closer and loving them more than ever or finding it very easy and necessary to quietly limit contact with them.  And I'm finding it very easy to tell when someone is lying/fibbing or has some hidden motive and have no patience for it.  I'm loving this last one though, it's so refreshing to feel guilt free in letting go of old acquaintances that are always negative or just frustrate or irritate me! And I think the people who are good friends deserve the extra love and attention their getting from me these days as I feel particularly affectionate towards them!

post #3 of 7

It has become extremely, extremely difficult for me to watch movies or watch or listen to news stories where children have been harmed, regardless of it being an accident or not.  Also, I *think* I am less judgmental of others, especially parents.  I saw a quote recently that explains it: I was a much better parent before I had kids.  Off the top of my head, those are the big ones I can think of.

post #4 of 7

As a first time mama, I've been keeping an eye on this thread, not really identifying with anything, but now I realized what my change has been:
I'm irrationally nervous about oncoming cars drifting into my lane, even when they're hugging their own shoulder. I'm not passing people (tourists!) I would normally pass on my commute home. I just feel like I'm far more endangered than I ever have before.
Hubby, on the other hand, a mountain- and road- biker of over fifteen years, bought his first helmet today! He said it's his first big step toward becoming a responsible dad. 

post #5 of 7

SO and I went to a recycled building materials warehouse this weekend to look for reclaimed/salvaged wood. Imagine doors and windows, piled up and leaning everywhere, racks and racks of lumber, forklifts, splinters, broken glass, rust, nails, you name it. I was sort of afraid to move when I was inside, and stood as far back as I could, whereas normally I would be digging through all of the goodies without a second thought.

post #6 of 7

Heh, rebuilding exchange, wendie?  Don't worry, I was a first-time PG too, but I was there 2 weeks ago with DS age 2 and we were climbing all over the place together.  Tetanus, schmetanus.  :D


I think as someone looking back on it, some of the worries fade and some remain very real.  For me the ones that have remained are I am still afraid of losing DS, eg at a crowded playground and someone taking him.  I'm also worried about being hit by a car on my bike, regardless of the outcome, to have DH lose me as a caregiver and make all my family deal with the hassle makes me worried.

post #7 of 7

yeah! rebuilding exchange smile.gif  oh, the irrational thoughts i was thinking! i was certain a board was going to come falling out of nowhere and smack me in the belly. then i was convinced the employee who was cutting boards for SO was going to lose a finger. it was bizarre and i couldn't stop the crazy thoughts. that place is awesome, though. i am going to go back for chicken coop materials as soon as i'm finished moving...


i'm also suddenly very worried about something happening to SO. he doesn't have health insurance, and he works in furniture moving/refurbishing, drives like a maniac, and is taking a welding class. i keep telling myself to chill out, but i'm just kind of waiting for him to injure himself somehow.

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