Changes - the mommy body after 3 or 4 kids - what can I expect? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 17 Old 11-03-2008, 09:07 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm wondering, did you see more changes in your body with your third child than your second? What about with the fourth (if you have one?). Do you think age plays a big factor? I'm talking about boob droopage, stretched out abdominal skin, stretch marks, weight gain, loss of tone "down there" ect. I'd like to have more kids, but I don't want to ruin my figure or my sex life. Be honest - how bad can I expect it to be? I know everyone is different, but I'd like to hear your opinions.

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#2 of 17 Old 11-03-2008, 11:38 PM
 
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I a currently pg with #6~ I really don't have any body image issues(which is amazing considering I used to dance & was told daily how fat I was at 95lbs). I know that I have done some amazing things by giving birth & breastfeeding these bambinos for at least 2 years each. It has not done anything negative about our sex life We would not have 6 if it did : My DH loves me & knows that he is partially to blame if thing sag a little more than they used to

Melissa
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#3 of 17 Old 11-03-2008, 11:51 PM
 
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I'm on #4 - the major changes were after my first (excess skin on my belly that wouldn't go away) and after weaning my 3rd (boob droopage). I didn't really notice any major changes after #2 and #3 were born - everything went back to "normal" (that is, the normal that was established after #1).
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#4 of 17 Old 11-04-2008, 12:31 AM
 
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Yep, the boobs definitely sag more after this 3rd one but I nursed a total of 6.5 yrs so that may have something to do with it.

My main thing that happened after #3 that was different from the previous 2 was that my lower ab skin is really stretched and almost looks like "burn" skin. There is no way any amt of toning will change it either.
But since I don't wear bikinis I guess no one will see it

I was able to lose the weight after each OK but it took a little longer after each one.

Full-time homeschooling mama : of a 15yo "teenager" , 12yo DIVA, 9yo builder, & 4yo treasure.
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#5 of 17 Old 11-04-2008, 12:43 AM
 
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#6 of 17 Old 11-04-2008, 12:46 AM
 
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The third didn't cause any additional change (the second child caused drastic changes to my body).

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#7 of 17 Old 11-04-2008, 09:47 AM
 
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The most drastic changes I noticed was after my third. *But* I was also 10 years older than when I had my first two! I think age has a lot to do with it, but since I didn't have any more than two when I was in my low to mid 20's, I can't say for sure.

After I had #4, my body had really, really changed. I'm pg with #5 now and I expect there to be even more changes. I'm 38. Being pg three times in just a little over 3 years in my mid 30's has really done a number on my body!

If the body changes would have happened in my 20's, I would have been upset about it. Body image was important to me. That was just immaturity and shallowness on my part and having my priorities a little mixed up. Pretty normal in our 20's.

Now though, I like to be and feel healthy, but body image isn't an issue. As long as I'm eating right and trying to get in a little exercise, I'm fine with it. My priorites are much different and being older I realize what's important and what's not. Body image is definitly not in my top 10. I'm proud of what my body has accomplished!

FWIW, I would never let the idea of my body changing be the determining factor of how many children I would have. I would have missed out on life's greatest joys. Having a great body miserably fails in comparison.
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#8 of 17 Old 11-04-2008, 04:32 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for all the replies. I was anorexic in my teens and I had major body issues after my first was born at age 21 (unplanned college pregnancy). I'm hoping things hold together for a third baby, cause I really want one, but I'd like to enjoy having a decent figure since I'm still in my 20s. I've seen some girls that had back to back pregs in their 20s and really let themselves go. My mom gained a lot of weight with her 4 kids that she is still struggling to get rid of, and it's a major health risk for her now that she is getting older. I want to go ahead and have one more baby while my skin is still elastic. I know women who have had/are contemplating surgery to get rid of extra skin on their abdomens and breast augmentation to fix droopy boobs after childbearing/bfing. It's something most women don't talk about but when they do you can see how ashamed they are and how bad they feel about their bodies. It makes me sad.

 nak.gif Mommy to fencing.gifKai 2/03, hammer.gifCaden 1/08, energy.gif Kara 10/09, angel1.gif 3/21/13, &

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~We may not have it all together  but together we have it all~ uc.jpgsaynovax.gifgoorganic.jpgintactivist.giflactivist.gif 

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#9 of 17 Old 11-04-2008, 04:44 PM
 
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I had the most change after baby #1. Nothing drastic after #2 or #3...working on #4 now and not seeing any major changes.
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#10 of 17 Old 11-05-2008, 01:47 PM
 
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I am on baby six and the only thing that has really changed about my body are my boobs. After 12+years of breastfeeding the do droop, but I don't worry about that because that is just part of life and hubby doesn't seem to mind and he's the only one that's gonna see them.
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#11 of 17 Old 11-05-2008, 03:47 PM
 
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I'm on baby #4 and really, the worst changes were #1. Whether it was just being pg w/ him or the extra amniotic fluid or the c/s, I don't know, but I do have droopy skin now at the bottom of my tummy that I hate. My boobs have never changed (thank you severe supply problems, I'm hoping for bigger ones this time!) so I have no real changes there. We're on baby #4 so sex must not be that bad! I still weigh the same (though I never lost the last 5# from Ilana and then gained back the 15# I had lost in the next year, thankfully I lost extra after Evan was born), but I know since Ilana it will be harder this time to lose and I do need to lose extra this time for my own health. I don't know about age, I'm sure it does play a factor, but I was 23 w/ my oldest and am only 28 now so I've given birth fairly close together.

Jennifer, LPN and nursing student, Doula, CPST, and VBAC mama x3 to
AJ (5/03), Evan (12/04), Ilana (11/06), Olivia (2/09), and Unity (8/2012)

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#12 of 17 Old 11-05-2008, 05:27 PM
 
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I am on baby #3 and the first 2 were definitely back to back. After I weaned DS my boobs shrank a ton. still cute- but much smaller than ever before. My abs still looked almost as good as pre-babies. Right before I got pg with this baby I was a little sad about my boobs- but DH took me bra shopping and let me tell you- my little boobies looked so dang good in a proper fitting sexy bra- it made me not care that I lost over a cup size.

I expect that after this baby (and more future children)- I will continue to change. It isn't a bad thing- I am now 28 and have 3 small children. these changes are due to anything bad and they certainly aren't anything to be ashamed of- you just change and hopefully your priorities change with your body. I think it is just a part of groing older.

oh- and do kegels for the down there tone.... just saying.

Iowaorganic- mama to DD (1/5/06), DS1 (4/9/07), DS2 (1/22/09), DS3 (12/10/10), DD2 (7/6/12) and a new kid due in early 2014

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#13 of 17 Old 11-05-2008, 08:30 PM
 
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Nope. First baby did all the major changes (stretch marks.. which fade, so no big deal, extra tummy skin, permanent belly pouch, wider hips, smaller deflated boobs) and I was 19 yrs old. Babies 2 and 3 didn't do anything extra. I'm on pregnancy #4 now.

Bethany, mama to M (9), J (7), S (4), and baby BOY 9/13/10!!
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#14 of 17 Old 11-05-2008, 09:09 PM
 
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FWIW, extended breastfeeding has done wonders for my figure. i was in way better shape after 2 kids than when i was childless.

it's true, i also eat better & have a healthier lifestyle since i had to take care of a family... but BF does change your metabolism forever, recent research shows.

i'm counting on my body bouncing back pretty quickly after #3, too (and i'm approaching 40, btw). :
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#15 of 17 Old 11-08-2008, 02:54 PM
 
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Well, I'm still working on #3, she's due in February. But I can tell you that at nearly 36 years of age my size C-D breasts still stand up and I have no stretch marks. This is despite my being only 5 feet tall and having gained 40 pounds in my first pregnancy and 50 in the second. (I took ALL of it off the first time, and was within 5 pounds of all of it off after the second.) Both children were nursed for 2 years.

Agree with other posters that how you eat has a lot to do with it. We are vegetarians. I don't think that it is necessary to not eat meat in order to keep your figure, but veg's often have a stronger commitment to healthy eating than the general population. I cook almost everything from scratch and we consume very little processed food. What else? I do yoga as often as is possible in our very irregularly scheduled household with 2 small children zooming around. I walk some, but not nearly as much as I would like and unfortunately, cycling is not part of my life these days because of a) the pregnancy and b) nowhere to "put" my younger daughter if I went out.

I think if you look at women who have "let themselves go" after having babies (and no, I don't mean just somewhat wider hips or saggier boobs, nor am I describing how they appear in the first year postpartum) you have to consider that they made these changes to their figures with their lifestyles and it was not automatically given by the fact of their motherhood.

The worst lasting effect I have from the 2 births is a dead zone in my lower belly. After the first birth, the sensation came back maybe 80% after 6 months, but after the second one I have maybe only 20% sensation there. It is because of having had 2 C-sections. Unfortunately, because of where I live, a third C-S is inevitable. But please don't get me started on this topic or I will rant and rave and maybe even cry....

p.s. The "shape of a mother" gallery is AMAZING!!! I will probably put myself in there after Q.R. is born.
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#16 of 17 Old 11-08-2008, 03:04 PM
 
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I lost all my pregnancy weight fast with first, slower with second... and very slow with third.
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#17 of 17 Old 11-08-2008, 03:23 PM
 
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I think it really depends on a few things; how fast your metabolism naturally is, how old you are, and how much elasticity your skin has (lotions and creams simply cannot prevent stretch marks).

I had my first just after my 21st birthday and all the "damage" was done with her pregnancy/birth; a good amount of stretch marks, though oddly enough none on my belly - though my mom didn't get a single one with any of her 3 babies. My skin never stayed saggy (except after the the first year or so of bf'ing with each of them my boobs are decently deflated and sag quite a bit, but DH doesn't mind so...), but my best friend has crepe-paper-like tummy skin and we're the same age :

I did lose a little tone 'down there' after #3, but kegels fixed that. I've never had any trouble losing weight either, I tend to lose a little too much actually.
I do have a little bit of tummy padding even when I'm 120, but it's only like an inch. If I worked out it would probably tone up better.

Anyway, everybody is just different. I do feel 'lucky' I suppose, but I really believe all Mamas are beautiful and think those sites are awesome
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