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Skoook's Avatar Skoook 10:24 AM 10-12-2012

Hello all!

 

I guess I don't know where to start. I'm here because I hope I can get support, or answers, or something... I'm pregnant and don't like kids, even worse, I really really don't like babies. The thought of having an infant around freaks me out, and I don't think I could ever bring myself to change a diaper.

 

A little history about myself: I grew up as a tomboy playing with my brother and all his friends. I've always been adventurous and "one of the guys." I love everything about the outdoors, and my daily activities are always outside in the woods, exploring.

 

I'm really scared about being pregnant. I have an amazing hubby who is extremely supportive and he's very excited about the news. I wish I could be happy with him, but I'm just not. In fact I get depressed thinking about it. When we are out and see babies and parents, I see his eyes light up, as he smiles and makes faces at the babies. My reaction is the opposite (internally), I am grossed out. I'm sure there are other people who have gone through what I'm going through. I secretly keep hoping to myself that I have a miscarriage. I feel ashamed about it though because my hubby would be crushed.

 

Some of my fears besides the overall having an extremely foreign thing in my life, is giving birth, feeling nasty looking with a huge bowling ball of a belly, getting no sleep (I get crazy with no sleep), always having an extra "thing" to cart around, and I don't want to lose my identity.

 

I don't know "kid" people, and have always avoided them in my friends group. People have told me that even if you don't like kids, you'll love your own. Okay, that could be correct, but what about having to do kid things once it's born?? Birthday parties, the park, kid places (whatever the hell you have to do with them). That would involve being around other babies or kids and that sounds awful to me.

 

The most important thing to me is that my whole life revolves around being adventurous with my dogs. In fact, I am one of those "dog people." The kind who never have kids, because their dogs are their kids. Yep, that's me. When I found out I was pregnant I told my hubby that I'd rather have a puppy. Everything I do, my dogs are included. We don't vacation unless they are allowed to go. The biggest fear that I have is that my dogs will come second if we have a baby to care for, as it sounds like they take A TON of energy and time. That is the saddest thing to me. I even feel guilty. Every time I think about being pregnant, my dogs pop into my head and the guilt lays on thick.

 

I talk to my hubby about most of these things. He knows how I feel about it. I don't know, I am just at a loss. I hope someone can help guide me or give me answers, or any insight, or experience. Has anyone else had this experience??



Mosaic's Avatar Mosaic 11:25 AM 10-12-2012
Welcome to MDC!!! I give you major props for admitting that you're not a huge "kids" person, because there are lots of folks out there who feel the same and (sshh, here's a big secret): many of them are parents!

It's perfectly ok to not be the ooey-gooey gushy joy.gif "I LOVE BABIES!!!" joy.gif type. I wasn't the biggest fan of kids before I had mine either, and I spent my first pregnancy feeling a bit like you do: afraid of the changes that were coming and unsure if I would really get into this "mother" role. I felt like an alien was growing in me, and I was way too overwhelmed to connect to the concept of a baby. My experience turned into severe pre-partum anxiety/depression, so I do encourage you to talk to someone about your feelings if you're struggling. (I didn't, and it was a huge mistake.)

That said, I was terrified of little babies before the birth of my first, but it was literally, truly, love at first sight. I know it's so cliche, and I didn't believe it at all even though dozens of people told me. But wow, if you knew where I was emotionally just 24 hours before my baby was born (DURING labor, mind you), and saw me even 1 second after the birth, you'd believe it's true. A big part of it is hormonal/chemical: really, you couldn't mess it up if you tried!

As for all the kid "stuff" that comes after: well, yes, life changes. But you can make time for things that are important to you, and you can actively make changes and set limits so that it's an improvement over your current life. Your dogs are going to LOVE their new playmate, and you're going to get such a huge kick out of watching them interact!!!
MeepyCat's Avatar MeepyCat 11:49 AM 10-12-2012

It sounds like this is a huge adjustment for you, and not a change that you anticipated making in your life. 

 

There are some things that I can be reassuring about, and some things I can't.  On the reassuring end, not everyone is a baby person, or a little kid person.  Some perfectly wonderful parents don't get really excited by their kids until their kids can talk, or later.  If you're one of those people, my advice is just to think of the parenting you do while you're waiting as an investment:  not all of the stages are fun, but you put up with them, and love your kid as best you can, because you can't just introduce yourself the day they get interesting and expect them to care.  Changing diapers is not that hard, and there are lots of things you'll wind up doing that you didn't imagine.  You're not going to lose your identity to this.

 

On the downside, yes, your dogs are going to come second. 


loveandgarbage's Avatar loveandgarbage 12:20 PM 10-12-2012

Welcome to MDC! I hope you find the support you need here. I hope some other mamas respond who have been in your shoes.

 

This might be a little personal and/or inappropriate but I'm going to say it anyway... are you sure you want to be a mom and continue the pregnancy? Again, it's none of my business where you fall on the choice spectrum, but there are options if you don't feel like this is something you want for your life. And as much as your DH is excited about the pregnancy, he must've known your feelings about babies/kids and I hope he would support you no matter what.

 

That said, being a mom doesn't have to take over your whole life. Maybe your DH can take on more of the nurturing role? And you would be surprised how easy it is to hike with a baby and dogs if you use a sling/carrier. I know a mom who doesn't really enjoy being a mom and will fully admit it. She's enjoying it more as her kid ages, though. She of course loves her child deeply... but at the same time isn't the first one to volunteer at her kid's school, they as a pair hang out with adults mostly, etc. And you know what? Of all the moms I know she has kept her identity firmly intact-- career, activities, etc. You don't have to "give it all up" just because you grow a human in your belly, especially if you have a partner who is willing to really be there.


journeymom's Avatar journeymom 01:27 PM 10-12-2012

I sympathize.  Our first child was unplanned.  When I saw that plus sign on the pregnancy test stick, I cried. This was a disaster as far as I was concerned. 

 

You do get a little assist from hormones (oxytocin) that are released when you give birth, and during nursing as well.  It's there for a reason; the human race (all mammals, I think ) wouldn't have survived otherwise. 

 

Also, don't put yourself in a box marked 'Tomboy'. That usefully describes you only so far.  You're a whole human being, which includes a spectrum of likes and dislikes and emotions.  Calmly allow yourself to be open to new experiences, you will discover aspects of yourself you didn't know you had. 

 

I have more thoughts, will come back later.  orngbiggrin.gif


Greenlea's Avatar Greenlea 01:41 PM 10-12-2012

I only wanted to say that while your life and activities may change once you have a baby, you can still bring your baby/child with and do the adventurous things you love to do. With our babies/kids we go camping, hiking, boating, biking, etc. Not sure exactly what "adventurous" things you are referring to, but you can make the baby fit into your life, instead of completely changing yours to fit the baby.  And hey, if there's something you want to do where you can't bring the baby, just get a sitter.  Its not a big deal.  And kids and dogs go great together for the most part. 


cwill's Avatar cwill 02:05 PM 10-12-2012

I can't give you answers; but yes, that was my exact experience.  I could have written your post almost to the word.  I was a childfree, outdoorsy, dog lover.  Now I'm an outdoorsy, dog lover with a child.  Even worse, I'm a stay-at-home mom.  And it's all good.  It really is.  You'll figure out how to make it work.  Feel free to pm if you want to chat more.
 


Skoook's Avatar Skoook 02:15 PM 10-12-2012

Wow, thanks for all the replies. I have a lot to think about!

 

If it all goes through, I would be a stay at home mom technically. However, I'm in school full time working my way towards a PhD, am a musician in bands, and actively compete in dog sports. My life is completely full, no time left over.

 

About dogs and kids... I know they go together, but I have herding dogs and one especially doesn't like kids and will nip at them. I honestly don't know how it would all go. And if my "kid" ever hit my dogs, I would feel like disowning the kid...


Skoook's Avatar Skoook 02:16 PM 10-12-2012
Quote:
Originally Posted by cwill View Post

I can't give you answers; but yes, that was my exact experience.  I could have written your post almost to the word.  I was a childfree, outdoorsy, dog lover.  Now I'm an outdoorsy, dog lover with a child.  Even worse, I'm a stay-at-home mom.  And it's all good.  It really is.  You'll figure out how to make it work.  Feel free to pm if you want to chat more.
 

I apparently can't PM?


cwill's Avatar cwill 02:44 PM 10-12-2012

Oh yeah, you're too new.

 

Without knowing you and your exact situation all I will say is that there are many options for dealing.  You will probably have to make sacrifices to some extent.  Your dogs might not get as much attention as they are used to for a few months.  You might have to take a leave of absence for a semester or lay off performing for a while.  In the long run, it's just not that big a deal.  I know it seems like it is.  I felt like my dog was the most neglected dog on the planet the first 3-5 weeks postpartum even though she was still getting exercise and training every day.

 

That said, I was training agility up until 38 weeks.  My instructor trained up to 37 weeks and trialed 2 week postpartum!  (I never could have done that, but we were back in the gym at 6 weeks.)  We camped as a whole family (dog included) with DC less than 6 months old several times.  My husband trained for and ran a triathalon in the first few months.  We added a puppy when DC was around 6 months old.  We had to crate and rotate (yes I'm including my child in that!) for a while, but it's fine now.  We hike every day just me, baby, and dogs. 


cwill's Avatar cwill 02:46 PM 10-12-2012

Oh, and there are a lot of online resources for helping dogs adjust to new babies.  Liam J Perk Foundation comes to mind.  Family Paws... I'll try to think of others.
 


JamieCatheryn's Avatar JamieCatheryn 02:53 PM 10-12-2012

My hubby and I do way more adventure outings with our kids than kid things. Hikes, caves, creeks, camping, stuff like that. They make you slow down and look at the little things while you're there but you can go...I guess dogs do too but kids and dogs have different instincts and agendas. You can wear babies from the time you've recovered from birth on to walking on their own full time, then you don't need to stick to stroller paths. The year my second was born we went in a huge cave and went on a long forest hike in the first 3 months. Each of my kids by 3 years could walk 3 miles on hilly dirt paths with some breaks on the way. They do demand time at the playground and such too, and like to play with other kids of course, we make a deal and go to the big park, they take a turn at the playground then we all go in the forest. My 6 year old mostly uses the playground as a set of obstacles for freerunning (now he's into Parkour thanks to youtube and Assassin's Creed). It's so strange when you start to realize this kid has their own more grown up ideas and thought process and interests and when they aren't busy being sorta obnoxious they are talking and acting like an adult, or teen at least, by 4 or 5 years old. Among my friends birthday parties and such haven't been a big deal, maybe let them all run around at the park together while we watch and chat, or have a cookout at someone's house where again, kids run around, grownups hang out together and keep an eye out. As a stay at home mom I do have to find kid friends for them, mostly that has been from church for us, sometimes my husband's co-workers and their kids. They don't have to be grouped by age just anybody who's willing to play with them. You aren't going to like most playgroups as many moms there are those who are full on into the trappings of parenthood. Better to find people with common interests as you who happen to have kids.

 

I think brand new members aren't able to PM for a while, in case of ad spammers and the like.


journeymom's Avatar journeymom 02:53 PM 10-12-2012

You won't lose your identity, it will change, expand and grow.  You'll become more multifaceted. Have you ever taken on a project that you'd never done before? Like learning to drive. There's a little fear of the unknown.  Then you get behind the wheel, and it's a bit nerve wracking, but it's really cool, too! Through repetition you learn the basics and get routine muscle memory. Then you can forget about some of it and focus on other aspects of driving. Before you know it, you're an experienced driver.

 

Go ahead and continue your life outdoors.  What a wonderful gift for a child!  A mom who shares her love for adventure and the outdoors!  You'll have to modify your adventures for a while.  But the adventures can grow as your child grows. 

 

My mom said we (my siblings and me) got more interesting the older we got.  I, of course, loved my kids when they were babies, but I enjoyed them more and more with each passing stage. My mother in law is baby crazy.  She had 7 children.  When her body said, "enough already!" she foster-adopted 2 more babies. That's just not for me, ya know?  I'd go effing nuts in her place.

 

I'll be honest, becoming a mother has been the toughest thing I've ever done.  My kids are 13 y.o. and 17 y.o. and my life is changed forever.  So? That's life.  Seriously, Life is Change.


Skoook's Avatar Skoook 02:54 PM 10-12-2012
Quote:
Originally Posted by cwill View Post

Oh yeah, you're too new.

 

Without knowing you and your exact situation all I will say is that there are many options for dealing.  You will probably have to make sacrifices to some extent.  Your dogs might not get as much attention as they are used to for a few months.  You might have to take a leave of absence for a semester or lay off performing for a while.  In the long run, it's just not that big a deal.  I know it seems like it is.  I felt like my dog was the most neglected dog on the planet the first 3-5 weeks postpartum even though she was still getting exercise and training every day.

 

That said, I was training agility up until 38 weeks.  My instructor trained up to 37 weeks and trialed 2 week postpartum!  (I never could have done that, but we were back in the gym at 6 weeks.)  We camped as a whole family (dog included) with DC less than 6 months old several times.  My husband trained for and ran a triathalon in the first few months.  We added a puppy when DC was around 6 months old.  We had to crate and rotate (yes I'm including my child in that!) for a while, but it's fine now.  We hike every day just me, baby, and dogs. 

 

 

Wow! I am an agility addict!!!!! That is my whole life :)


cwill's Avatar cwill 03:03 PM 10-12-2012
Quote:
Originally Posted by Skoook View Post

 

Wow! I am an agility addict!!!!! That is my whole life :)

 

That's awesome.  :)  I have only worked with one dog so far, but loved it.  I'm excited for our puppy to be old enough to really work with him.  He's going to fly, I think.  :)
 


mamarhu's Avatar mamarhu 07:18 PM 10-12-2012

I was in total denial my entire first pregnancy. Although I tried, ignoring it did not make it go away! orngtongue.gif I loved ElderSon deeply from the moment he was born, but I didn't really catch on to the dedicated, 101% attitude for a few months. We lived on a sailboat for the first 5 years of his life, and rarely saw another baby or child. He in no way limited our life - we sailed between islands, rowed ashore for supplies, fished, swam, did whatever we did. ElderSon participated in everything. We really made no lifestyle changes at all. A baby limits your life as much as you want it to. Don't get me wrong - I was totally committed to him and attached. But I included him in my life, rather than designing a lifestyle around him. Many people said it couldn't be done, that our life was too unsafe (mainly caring grandparents), that he needed same age children to play with, and assorted other fears. How could we live without a crib, high chair, stroller? I am here to tell you that babies don't need the huge majority of the stuff and nonsense sold and promoted for their "benefit". That child is now 31, a career in the army, has 2 lovely, healthy kids, a sweet wife, and a pretty great life. It didn't hurt him a bit to "miss out on" mommy and me classes, Baby Einstein, nursery school, whatever else babies and toddlers supposedly need. And as he aged, I never did PTA, Little League, Boy Scouts, or playdates. I just don't have it in me.

 

I don't know how you will answer the problem of a dog that bites kids. But it doesn't sound much more overwhelming than "How do you keep a toddler from falling overboard?" I can easily imagine Dad sitting in the audience with babe during your gigs. You might nurse during breaks. Babies are highly portable, at least for a year or so in a sling, and would not inhibit your work with the dogs. School is totally doable I attended anatomy class (human cadaver) in my third trimester with a later baby, had that baby six weeks prematurely, missed only three days of school (due to a long weekend!) and brought him with me to finals, at eight days old. Nursed during the tests! In recent years, I have tobogganed, repaired the brakes on my van, and worked full days at my stall at a craft market, all with a grandbaby in a sling. It is really pretty fun.
 

My advice is to design your own life. Let go of preconceived ideas about how to live with a baby. Little of common practice is carved in stone.


journeymom's Avatar journeymom 12:32 AM 10-13-2012
Rhu! When you going to write that book? That's beautiful and I want to know more! orngbiggrin.gif
mtiger's Avatar mtiger 08:21 AM 10-13-2012

I had spent little time around babies/little kids before having my two. And even then, I really didn't enjoy the play groups, the make-believe games, etc. *Shudder* still. But it IS possible to continue doing what you love and include your infant/child. When mine were little, we spent a TON of time outdoors - hiking, camping, at the zoo, at the arboretum, etc. Took them to all kinds of sporting events and concerts. When they got a little older, I volunteered as a soccer and baseball coach, then a Scout leader, etc. All stuff *I* enjoyed. As they got older still and turned more into "real people", I enjoyed them much more.

 

As for the dogs... While *we* didn't have dogs at the time (ex was allergic), my parents did - and there was no problem integrating the dogs with the babies. Sure, I kept a close eye and made sure that the kids didn't do anything to hurt them, but their dogs were very gentle with the kids, and I never had to worry. (I started "gentle touches" with mine from the first day they were introduced to the dogs.) By the time my ex was gone and we got dogs ourselves, the kids were well "trained". 

 

Even with my dislike of little kids, my two have grown into very well-adjusted young adults.

 

Oh - the "details" of babies - diapers, spit-up, etc.? It's just something you do. If one of your dogs is sick - vomits or has diarrhea - you just take care of it, right? Same thing with babies. Not their fault, so you just handle it like you would with the hounds.
 


Skoook's Avatar Skoook 07:08 PM 10-14-2012
Quote:
Originally Posted by mamarhu View Post

I was in total denial my entire first pregnancy. Although I tried, ignoring it did not make it go away! orngtongue.gif I loved ElderSon deeply from the moment he was born, but I didn't really catch on to the dedicated, 101% attitude for a few months. We lived on a sailboat for the first 5 years of his life, and rarely saw another baby or child. He in no way limited our life - we sailed between islands, rowed ashore for supplies, fished, swam, did whatever we did. ElderSon participated in everything. We really made no lifestyle changes at all. A baby limits your life as much as you want it to. Don't get me wrong - I was totally committed to him and attached. But I included him in my life, rather than designing a lifestyle around him. Many people said it couldn't be done, that our life was too unsafe (mainly caring grandparents), that he needed same age children to play with, and assorted other fears. How could we live without a crib, high chair, stroller? I am here to tell you that babies don't need the huge majority of the stuff and nonsense sold and promoted for their "benefit". That child is now 31, a career in the army, has 2 lovely, healthy kids, a sweet wife, and a pretty great life. It didn't hurt him a bit to "miss out on" mommy and me classes, Baby Einstein, nursery school, whatever else babies and toddlers supposedly need. And as he aged, I never did PTA, Little League, Boy Scouts, or playdates. I just don't have it in me.

 

I don't know how you will answer the problem of a dog that bites kids. But it doesn't sound much more overwhelming than "How do you keep a toddler from falling overboard?" I can easily imagine Dad sitting in the audience with babe during your gigs. You might nurse during breaks. Babies are highly portable, at least for a year or so in a sling, and would not inhibit your work with the dogs. School is totally doable I attended anatomy class (human cadaver) in my third trimester with a later baby, had that baby six weeks prematurely, missed only three days of school (due to a long weekend!) and brought him with me to finals, at eight days old. Nursed during the tests! In recent years, I have tobogganed, repaired the brakes on my van, and worked full days at my stall at a craft market, all with a grandbaby in a sling. It is really pretty fun.
 

My advice is to design your own life. Let go of preconceived ideas about how to live with a baby. Little of common practice is carved in stone.

 

You give me hope!


Skoook's Avatar Skoook 07:13 PM 10-14-2012

Thanks to everyone who has responded!

 

I've been thinking a lot about my situation. One thing that haunts me is always having another human around me, or having to be responsible at all times for that human. I am a very private person and require a lot of alone time. One thing about me is that I am spontaneous to a fault, having a kid may bring me down on that aspect. At the current moment, I feel that I will be overwhelmed with having to care for another. The thought of waking up every morning to take the kid to school sounds awful, then making sure I'm around or someone is around to pick up the kid, etc.

 

More thoughts to come...


MeepyCat's Avatar MeepyCat 12:40 PM 10-15-2012
Quote:
Originally Posted by Skoook View Post

Thanks to everyone who has responded!

 

I've been thinking a lot about my situation. One thing that haunts me is always having another human around me, or having to be responsible at all times for that human. I am a very private person and require a lot of alone time. One thing about me is that I am spontaneous to a fault, having a kid may bring me down on that aspect. At the current moment, I feel that I will be overwhelmed with having to care for another. The thought of waking up every morning to take the kid to school sounds awful, then making sure I'm around or someone is around to pick up the kid, etc.

 

More thoughts to come...

 

You might feel a little better if you (a) talked to a therapist, and (b) looked into daycares.  I say therapist because some of this definitely sounds like it could use a professional perspective, and some consideration concerning anxiety issues.  And daycares, because they have saved my life when I haven't been able to provide day to day care for my kids, because of work or health issues or, frankly, the fact that the daycare gets my kids to the park twice a day, and we all go slowly stir crazy when we're home together all the time.

 

You talk about your spontanaiety, and how overwhelming it would be to have to wake up every morning and take a kid to school, but... you have dogs.  Do they not require any level of daily routine, or care, or planning?  (Or, for that matter, cleaning - seriously, you've cleaned up after dogs, trust me when I say that diapers are not worse then that.)

 

And then there's this unavoidable fact:  a child will change your life.  A child is an obligation that requires major changes in behavior.  That can be frightening.  Being a good parent requires you to get past that, some way or other.  Some people face it head on and talk it over with pros.  Some people sidle past it, doing what needs to be done while giving the parts that upset them minimal consideration. Some people cut deals with their partners to avoid the parts that scare them most.

 

There is no obligation to become a parent.  You don't have to do it.  But if you do it, there is an obligation to get over the petty inconveniences and meet your child's needs. 


sillychick's Avatar sillychick 03:34 AM 10-17-2012

I wasn't crazy about having kids, but did not have the body issues til I had not lost the weight 2 years later because I didn't try at all and it's easy enough to exercise, babies love it outside, stick 'em in a backpack or sling and you bring them with you - if you fit them in YOUR life, you won't be losing your identity by centering around them.  I love my kids, so happy to have had them, but I am NOT a kid person - something about birthing my first one and holding him and I was hooked.  I graduated college 5 months pregnant with a 10 month old on my hip - I made it work and it works for us.  I have a friend at work who feels similarly to you and her husband to your husband.  lots of love to you, hoping you sort that out and it works out. <3


Nightwish's Avatar Nightwish 05:15 AM 10-17-2012
Quote:
Originally Posted by Skoook View Post

Wow, thanks for all the replies. I have a lot to think about!

 

If it all goes through, I would be a stay at home mom technically. However, I'm in school full time working my way towards a PhD, am a musician in bands, and actively compete in dog sports. My life is completely full, no time left over.

 

About dogs and kids... I know they go together, but I have herding dogs and one especially doesn't like kids and will nip at them. I honestly don't know how it would all go. And if my "kid" ever hit my dogs, I would feel like disowning the kid...


I was in your shoes 7 years ago... Complete with being a PhD student and having a dog.

 

I also dislike kids, even now I often scare kids. I don't want to hold new babies, I don't want to talk to kids at the park etc.

 

And yet, I've been breastfeeding my own for the past 7 years, co-slept for the same length of time, stayed at home (now I'm back to work)...

 

Your baby will be different from other kids. He / she is a person whose personality will amaze and humble you.

 

Go back to your past and see what caused this dislike of children. For me, I credit it to my mom who completely despised herself as a woman, and despised the fact that she had girls and taught us how to hate our bodies.

Then make sure you embrace this experience fully, don't try to avoid it because you can't. Make sure you have a gentle birth, breastfeed, stay home with baby for as long as you can. Pregnancy, birth and breastfeeding won't ruin your body, they will complete it. You will be amazed at the power you have as a woman.

Read Ina May Gaskin.


MeepyCat's Avatar MeepyCat 08:10 AM 10-17-2012
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nightwish View Post

Then make sure you embrace this experience fully, don't try to avoid it because you can't. Make sure you have a gentle birth, breastfeed, stay home with baby for as long as you can. Pregnancy, birth and breastfeeding won't ruin your body, they will complete it. You will be amazed at the power you have as a woman.

Read Ina May Gaskin.

 

I just want to hit this a little, because I know if I had read this advice when I was pregnant, it would have straight-up terrified me, and I haven't changed so much that it doesn't.

 

Birth is not entirely under our control.  We make choices that we hope will give us the best odds, and in the end, we get the births we get.  It is not possible to "make sure you have a gentle birth."  I'm sure we all wish it was, but it's one of those things that cannot be guaranteed.

 

With my first baby, I went back to school very early (he was ten weeks old) and was very happy.  I stayed home much longer with my second, and by the end of the third month, I was basically climbing the walls.  Some people are extremely happy and fulfilled being at home with their children, others are not, either path is okay.

 

How long to breastfeed is another incredibly personal thing.  Some people love it.  Some people find it makes their skin crawl.  There are alternatives.

 

And Ina May Gaskin... oh, I know she's the mother of modern midwifery, and loads of people love her books, but I find her just incredibly offputting.  She has this insistence that if the birth isn't progressing, it must be because the mother needs to process some kind of emotional issue or ambivalence about the baby.  An astounding number of the non-progressing labors in her book are "resolved" by a quick relationship counseling session, or clitoral stimulation, either of which is about the last thing I would want anyone to try with me during  labor.  And it bugs me that she refers to female genitalia as the  "taint".  It bugs me a lot.


Indian summer's Avatar Indian summer 10:56 AM 10-17-2012
Hi and welcome to the board. I have an admission to make. I felt the very same way about getting a dog. I am a natural baby whisperer type person, but when it comes to dogs, I'm clueless and overwhelmed. Having said that, my whole family had been begging for a dog for years and so last year, I caved and after very careful research ended up with the an f1b goldendoodle girl. Oh, she was cute enough in the puppy stage, but she peed on the floor and I didn't have a clue how to make her stop. Nor did I know what to do about her chewing our shoes and eating our socks and running from me when I wanted her to come and having energy to burn when I had none. Oye! And I'm a bit ashamed to admit she wasn't my first pick from the litter so I was a bit disappointed to find someone else got my top choice of one that looked to me at the time a bit cuter.

Well a year later and lots of support from friends, online sources, and advice from books etc. I'm pretty smitten with her. I learned some dog training techniques that I still don't fully understand, (it still isn't my forte), and she listens to me more often than not and I adore her because I live with her and she's mine. She doesn't chew our stuff anymore and does her business outside and that has helped me warm up to her. I still have moments when I have no idea what she wants, what she is trying to tell me, but I do my best and she seems happy and healthy. And I LOVE her now. She is a member of the family and I would be devastated if anything bad happened to her.

I know, I know, a baby is not the same thing. But I thought a dog lover might get my comparison. I'll bet you could imagine loving any dog that you spent enough time with and I promise you, it will be the same with your child. And it sounds like you have all the qualities of a great mom already. Your kid is lucky to have you and one day you will laugh when you think of the way you felt before having your child. Think back on all the dogs you've ever loved and think specifically of your favourite one. Imagine if it were possible to love something even more than you loved that dog because that is what you are about to experience. You may not believe it now, but it will happen.
Indian summer's Avatar Indian summer 11:07 AM 10-17-2012
Forgot to mention one more thing. I read your concern that your kid might not be nice to your dogs, but exactly because he or she is being raised by you, in a home filled with dogs and dog activity and dog love, the child will likely be a natural with dogs and with some gentle guidance from you will love them as much as you do. The old expression children learn what they live is true.
Nightwish's Avatar Nightwish 12:26 PM 10-17-2012
Quote:
Originally Posted by MeepyCat View Post

 

I just want to hit this a little, because I know if I had read this advice when I was pregnant, it would have straight-up terrified me, and I haven't changed so much that it doesn't.

 

Birth is not entirely under our control.  We make choices that we hope will give us the best odds, and in the end, we get the births we get.  It is not possible to "make sure you have a gentle birth."  I'm sure we all wish it was, but it's one of those things that cannot be guaranteed.

 

With my first baby, I went back to school very early (he was ten weeks old) and was very happy.  I stayed home much longer with my second, and by the end of the third month, I was basically climbing the walls.  Some people are extremely happy and fulfilled being at home with their children, others are not, either path is okay.

 

How long to breastfeed is another incredibly personal thing.  Some people love it.  Some people find it makes their skin crawl.  There are alternatives.

 

And Ina May Gaskin... oh, I know she's the mother of modern midwifery, and loads of people love her books, but I find her just incredibly offputting.  She has this insistence that if the birth isn't progressing, it must be because the mother needs to process some kind of emotional issue or ambivalence about the baby.  An astounding number of the non-progressing labors in her book are "resolved" by a quick relationship counseling session, or clitoral stimulation, either of which is about the last thing I would want anyone to try with me during  labor.  And it bugs me that she refers to female genitalia as the  "taint".  It bugs me a lot.


My advice was: give yourself permission to enjoy having a baby, giving birth, breastfeeding. By "make sure you have a gentle birth" I didn't mean to say you MUST have a gentle birth. Or you MUST breastfeed for X years. Just make sure you open up to the experience.

I asked for an epidural in my 7th month of pregnancy.

I planned to breastfeed only because it was cheaper. I loved breastfeeding and it made my skin crawl, sometimes at the same time.

I was back to my PhD courses 2 weeks after the birth of my first. I was ok with it and proud of how much I can accomplish.

 

I wish I wouldn't have fought so much against mothering. Just embrace the experience. Enjoy my baby. And see where it takes me.

 

I too was given the advice to have a natural birth with my first on a public forum and childbirth was described as being "empowering". I thought the woman was nuts. But it was intriguing enough as to make me look for more answers (and ask the right questions).


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