There is a wonderful
article written by Kathleen Kendall-Tackett, PhD Making Peace with Your Birth Experience
that appeared in LLL's A New Beginnings Magazine. I hope it helps!
Originally Posted by mamaley
i was selfish, ignorant, and made a very stupid mistake.
Yikes Mamaley! That's being really hard on yourself. First of almost everybody is "ignorant" the first time around. Don't beat yourself up for not knowing EVERYTHING about birth/bonding you do now. Second, you weren't even SUPPORTED by the people who should have.
I can hardly blame you for that. I fault them. (And at some point, you have to let that anger go. Otherwise it will just continue
to hurt you.
Third thing I want to say is your son's icon is the same as mine. A bouncy, happy kid. That's a great thing.
That's what you should focus on. It doesn't look to me like you failed.
Blueviolet - great post! Validating and simply listening are the best sometimes (of course I can't do that now.) Anyway, Mamaley I know you feel about his rough start. So did my son. At the hospital:1)
He came out SCREAMING, angry and upset (damn that Pitocin, which probably denied him some oxygen and me lying flat on my back pushing him hard for 2 hours... )2)
They plopped him on my chest for 5 minutes then took him away. I didn't get to breastfeed my newborn
for HOURS! He was perfectly fine and healthy.3)
He remained separated from me in the maternity ward for most of his 2 days. He cried (screamed loudy
ing ) A LOT most of the time.
I couldn't understand what was wrong. When I held him, he was peaceful and fine. I asked the nurses what was wrong, and they didn't seem concerned in the least.
(Easy for THEM to ignore, not give a shit.) I later learned that crying like that can cause brain cells to die.
(I can provide the link, but I'm not right now, because it'll just make you feel worse.) This is my first big regret and what haunted me for months.4)
I signed the F-ing circ consent form, because I felt railroaded by DH (but that's a whole other guilt thing. I'm going to just focus on the other "rough start" regrets.)
Anyway, the crying he did in the maternity ward really, really haunted me. It dawned on me when I got home how much he must have suffered. They brought him to me to BF then took him back.
I saw him screaming once and ignored by the staff in the room. I was knocking on the window to get him. They took their time.
I also noticed a binky in his bassinet (I had requested NO binkies) and that was ignored. He probably got formula
I noticed a mechanical baby rocker.
and after plugging his mouth, they probably put him in that F-ing thing to soothe him. Why didn't they just go to me?????
I wasn't an invalid.
I did succeed in avoiding the Epidural for 18 hours and having a pretty painfree labor thanks to HypnoBirthing
, but I had no idea how typical maternity/hospital treatment would affect my baby. Live and learn. I don't beat myself up for that. How could I have known?
Anyway, a few months later, at a playgroup (he must have been 8 months old or so) I shared my feelings and a mom said, "but look at him now... he's happy and thriving."
Yup.When we got home, I held him A LOT and I think that helped him - but it almost made me suicidal because I was overwhelmed for the first two weeks, breastfeeding and holding him all day with little breaks...
I was determined to hold/soothe him (he was a high-need baby that THRIVED on being held.) He was only calmed by being held. He couldn't even sleep alone for the first 7 months.
It's weird, even at 8 months post-partum I was still feeling bad and guilty about how he suffered, but my friend helped me see reality. I let go of that sadness then and there.
(But the circumcision
still hurts me. I see penis everyday. That sadness will always be there. The best thing I can do now to make myself feel better about that is help other parents-to-be
avoid the trap I fell into.)
Mamaley, at what point did you start to feel bonded with your son? At what point did you see that he was happy???? Pretty early I bet.
You made mistakes. Everybody makes mistakes. Your son is happy and loved. You have not failed him. I bet you caught up pretty quick - as quick as humanly possible.
I can't even wish to go back in time because I can't do it, so it's a waste of my energy. The only thing I can focus on is right now
and I do a pretty darned good job of it now.
There are still many gifts you can give your DS... focus on all the good you do. He's a bouncy, happy kid for a reason - you.