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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This is my first post so I will give you a little background info. I had my son last Sept. 30th at almost 43 weeks. I went into labor at 6:30am Friday morning and did great. Went to Wal-mart to get a stop watch then Office Depot to have my birth plan laminated. I labored at home for nearly 12 hours. I had not dialated at all to that point (I had an appt the day before)so when I started with back labor at about 6:30pm I decided we should probably get to the hospital (it's a 45 minute drive).<br><br>
I got to the hospital at 7:40pm and was told my doc was not on call and they would have to put a call in to the doc who was. They did not have my chart or any of my info in the computer (I've learned my lesson on that one). I was in the "holding tank" for nearly 3 hours before the doc showed up (did I mention it was high school football season?) and even then I was only 2.5cm. After 4 hours of back labor I broke down and got some narcodics (huge mistake) then an epi around 11:45pm. The second I got the epi I "snapped out of it" and felt much better. I rested until 1:30am when the doc came in and said I was only 3cm and that the baby's heartrate was dropping with contractions. At that point I had a horrible migraine and was exausted so I said OK to the c-section.<br><br>
Well, come to find out the reason I was not progressing was that my son was transverse/postierior and his neck was completely turned to the side. Not only that but he had passed meconium some time earlier and was completely covered in it. He was rushed to the NICU where he spent the next 10 days. He recovered quickly due to the fact his head was tilted so he didn't breathe in much at all. I stayed at the hospital for those 10 days in a courtsey room and only got to spend 30 mins to an hour 4 times a day with him (all while trying to establish BF) and was alone much of the time. He never took to BF so I exclusively pumped for 7 months. I feel that my C-section was necessary and am glad I didn't fight it. I recovered quickly mainly b/c I had to walk to the NICU 4 times a day and was on the other end of the hospital for the last 7 days.<br><br>
My son is my world but I have a feeling that I'm not as attached to him as I should be. We did co-sleep (just him and me) until just a month ago and I have worn him since birth but I worked 45 minutes away from home for the first 9 months leaving him with my MIL from 8am-6pm everyday. I feel that he thinks that she is his mommy and cries when she leaves. It breaks my heart but I know she loves him and did a wonderful job. Now that I'm starting back to work PT (in town) she is going to be keeping him more. He's 11 months and very attached to her.<br><br>
I guess here are my questions. We are planning to TTC #2 at the first of the year and I'm planning to VBAC/BF.<br>
1) Did you feel more attached to your VBAC child?<br>
2) Did it make you feel guilty?<br>
3) Did your VBAC experience help you become more attached to #1 since you had to opportunity to have the birth you wished for?<br>
4)Anything I should know from women who have BTDT?<br><br>
Thanks to anyone who made it this far. I am so excited to TTC and have another child but I fear the unknown. I know 100% that I want to VBAC but I am so scared that it will effect my relationship with my son.<br><br>
TIA!!<br><br>
StellaBleu
 

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Hmm... this is sort of a hard question to answer, but my answer is probably "yes and no".<br><br>
I do feel a "different" connection with my VBAC baby. It's a strange feeling that's hard to describe but I would say it's like I know him differently. I have to take into consideration that I was not concious for my c-section and have no reccolection of that birth whatsoever, which is a big empty space for me in my head and heart.<br><br>
That said, yes every once in a while when I'm thinking about it I do feel guilty that I'm missing that peice, for both of us. I wish I had been "present" for the first groundbreaking event of his life and my motherhood.<br><br>
But, I've moved past that for the most part and established within myself that I can't change the past, but I can mold the future. I don't love him any less and it definitely didn't change anything except that now I fully know what I missed the first time.
 

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My VBAC baby is only 7 weeks old, but I have to say that I do not have a stronger connection at this point with her than with my first daughter. Sometimes I look at my first born and feel sorry for her for having to come into the world via c-section, but I don't feel less of a connection.
 

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I had my ds by c-section and I can't imagine feeling any different toward him just I didn't push him out. Just like I also can't imagine why I would feel sorry for him for being a c-section baby. I love <b>him</b>, not how he came into this world.
 

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I see where you're coming from, and I think maybe it has to do with how you felt about the birth rather than how you feel about your son. I had a crappy, crappy c-section recovery when I had DS. I was exhausted and in pain, and the first weeks were pretty dreadful. Although I instantly fell in love with my son when he was born, I didn't really enjoy motherhood for quite a few months. That's a really common symptom of PND, and I'm sure I had that to some degree. So all this to say, I did feel sort of distant to my son in a way but that was more to do with my feelings about the birth rather than my son.<br><br>
Fast forward to now, and I do feel differently about my DD (VBAC.) Now, I'm not sure if this is because my birth experience was so much better, or if it's because this is our last child. I feel very protective of her and I'm really loving every minute with her, and I feel like I'm a better mother to her than I was with my son in the early months.<br><br>
But having said all that, I love both kids with equal intensity and don't feel like my relationship with my son is worse. He's so lovely with his little sister and it's been wonderful seeing them together.<br><br>
The best of luck TTC and I hope you have a wonderful birth experience!
 

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Hugs mama... a c/s, or any traumatic birth, can take a long time to process. Talk to mamas here, find your local ICAN group or join the ICAN yahoo group. Perhaps work with a therapist or healer, read Birthing From Within, consider journaling or meditating or drawing or talking or whatever will help you on this journey. It can be so hard...especially when life is getting in the way too (with work etc).<br><br>
Also, your next birth (vbac or not) will change you're relationship with your current son...but that doesn't mean it will be a bad thing! There will be more challenges but also more joy, and it's really normal to worry about how the family will change with each new member. Just try not to worry about "how" that new babe will arrive.<br><br>
Anyway...I don't feel any more or less connected to either of my girls. One was a c/s one was a vbac but both are my wonderful joyous daughters. Both births have been hard, I had ppd after my c/s in large part to how totally my expectations were shattered, but both births were amazing moments in my life.<br><br>
Actually (and to be totally honest) I think I feel just a little tiny bit less attached to my vbac babe since she can't have my total attention...I'm always splitting my attention between newborn and toddler. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"><br><br>
Good luck mama...and welcome to mdc! I hope you enjoy the community and share your vbac adventure with us.
 

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Great question! I actually asked a similar question here a few months ago. I have not had a VBAC but am planning for my next (still not yet TTC but soon).<br><br>
I also had bonding issues with my daughter, who is now nearly 2 years old. I would say it took me well into second year to feel like we "bonded", as I would have hoped for. Like you, I had breastfeeding issues and ended up expressing full-time for over a year (as you would know, this can be a big challenge, very tiring, time-consuming and potentially disappointing experience!). My daughter also had hip problems and was in a hip/leg brace for a few months. I went back to work part-time pretty soon (which did actually help me to get over some depression too) and my daughter also stayed with my mother then. I didn't feel she loved me as much as my mother initially (it's more balanced now, and even if I still feel "second" occasionally, I am now genuinely happy that they can share that time together and my daughter can look back on her time with her Grannie and have nice memories of her. I never knew my mum's mum, so I'm happy my daughter can know mine.). I mainly co-slept and carried her a lot, which helped but not completely. If I'm completely honest about it, I'd say that I was on some levels I was angry with her for having breastfeeding problems, sleeping problems and for not coming out of my vagina!!! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"> Obviously she had no control over those things, but I think a small part of me was looking for someone to blame besides myself. Maybe she could sense that. Those feelings have cleared now, but it's taken a while to accept it and deal with it and move on. I think once I moved past this, it became easier to for us to love each other, and I could enjoy my time with her more. We still have our ups and downs, but I now see this as normal and don't stress about the downs so much. It's all a learning curve.<br><br>
So, although everyone's story is different, I can certainly relate to how you are feeling. I have wondered myself if things had gone differently, and if I"d had a vaginal delivery or a different birth, would I have felt happier after the birth? Would I have had fewer breastfeeding problems? Would I have felt more bonded to her?<br><br>
Part of wanting a VBAC in the future is my hope that I wouldn't have as many bonding issues,<br><br>
.....BUT after much deep thought and reflection, I've decided that Yes, I would feel better about MYSELF mentally if a had a successful VBAC and physically it may be an easier recovery. This MAY facilitate (but not guarantee) a better breast-feeding relationship, which MAY help me bond quicker (I had high hopes for breastfeeding!). But I would definitely plan mentally and physically more for the impending birth and caring for new baby. I would have less expectations of how quickly I should "bond" and try not to feel bad or guilty if it wasn't as quick as other people. Becoming a parent to a new baby is a huge experience to go through and can take a long period of adjustment. We and our children have many many years (God willing) to get to know each other and to have our love for each other grow! I think there's too much pressure on parents to have this magic "bond" immediately, but the reality is that this happens for some but certainly not all!<br><br>
At the end of the day, I personally think most of the bonding will be independent of whether or not I have a successful VBAC or C-section. A surgery can lead to some initial hurdles, but I think it has more to do with whether or not your previous expectations work out (staying positive and planning well, but preparing for all outcomes mentally is what I"m trying to do now regarding labour and breastfeeding next time), putting less pressure on yourself for a perfect bond, possibly physical hormone changes or PND, what else is going on in your life and household at the time, and maybe being less shell-shocked as with first-time mothering! I also think that having a closer relationship with my daughter now (slowly but surely it grew) gives me hope that things will work out. And as I love her dearly now, if I do bond instantly with the new baby, I don't think I would necessarily feel guilty about that (which I used to be scared of).<br><br>
I hope these thoughts help you. No real answers as haven't BTDT. Hopefully one day I can answer your questions for real!<br><br>
all the best for TTC, your next pregnancy, labour and breastfeeding. And I hope you and your son's love for each other will steadily grow. Toddler years can be challenging and rewarding at the same time and I think it's a fun journey! Small warning though...some toddlers can SEEM to love you one minute and hate you the next. I try not to take it too personally!<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/winky.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Wink"><br><br>
Sorry this was so long. Didn't mean it! I babble when I'm tired! and it's been good to sort through these feelings again, so thank you!<br><br>
Sharon
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thank y'all so much for your replies. I think much of my issue stems from his stay in the NICU. I didn't get to hold him until he was nearly 6 days old and worried constantly if he was being attended to properly (not medically but emotionally). The nurses and docs were wonderful but I wanted him with me and not in a fully lit room with several other babies possibly crying with no one to care for him. I still feel guilty for going so far over my due date b/c I didn't want to be induced. Things would have been so much different and I may not have had to have a c-section. All the "what ifs" get to me sometimes.<br><br>
I read the article about "Lying-in" after birth and I really think I'm going to try to do something like that. My MIL would be more than happy to care for DS occassionally and I think it would be good for me. I really want to prepare for TTC/Pregnancy/VBAC more this time around although I thought I had but I have learned so much from that experience.<br><br>
Sharon sounds almost just like me! I'm so glad you shared your story. It's good to know that I'm not the only one who feels this way and has the same worries and concerns.<br><br>
StellaBleu
 

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I think this is a tough one since, who wants to admit they are not equally bonded to all of their children?<br><br>
I admit that I feel a stronger "attachment" to my vbac baby. My c/sec baby was with me initially and in recovery, but went to nursery with friends and family while I had some complications resovled for a couple hours.<br><br>
My vbac baby I held from birth for about 45 min and nursed her before anyone was allowed to take her including family, husband, nurse whatever. I didn't realize at first, but when I think about how I feel towards her, I know I didn't feel the same way towards him.<br><br>
And, no I don't regret it. I just try to bond with him now to improve my relationship with my c/baby.
 

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My c/s baby roomed in with me and was nursing fifteen minutes after I was stitched up, so I can't say I had any bonding issues with him, but I can totally imagine how that would happen. I bet it will get better between you and your firstborn over time.<br><br>
If you have a VBAC, I bet that won't be such a problem for you, especially if you room in with your baby (assuming you're even having a hospital birth).<br><br>
Nealy<br>
mama to Thales, 4 1/2, and Lydia, 18 months
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>PixieStix</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/9084808"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I see where you're coming from, and I think maybe it has to do with how you felt about the birth rather than how you feel about your son. I had a crappy, crappy c-section recovery when I had DS. I was exhausted and in pain, and the first weeks were pretty dreadful. Although I instantly fell in love with my son when he was born, I didn't really enjoy motherhood for quite a few months. That's a really common symptom of PND, and I'm sure I had that to some degree. So all this to say, I did feel sort of distant to my son in a way but that was more to do with my feelings about the birth rather than my son.<br><br>
Fast forward to now, and I do feel differently about my DD (VBAC.) Now, I'm not sure if this is because my birth experience was so much better, or if it's because this is our last child. I feel very protective of her and I'm really loving every minute with her, and I feel like I'm a better mother to her than I was with my son in the early months.<br><br>
But having said all that, I love both kids with equal intensity and don't feel like my relationship with my son is worse. He's so lovely with his little sister and it's been wonderful seeing them together.<br><br>
The best of luck TTC and I hope you have a wonderful birth experience!</div>
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I think this is kind of how I felt. I was an emotional wreck after my first baby was born, and a lot of it was just the pregnancy was a surprise and it was a huge adjustment to having this other person to take care of, and I getting stressed out whenever she cried, and then feeling awful on top of all of that didn't help. With my second, it was just easier, the birth was so much easier and I was so much happier about it, and then I got into a groove with him so much faster because he was my second and I knew what I was doing more, but I don't love my oldest any less or feel less connected with her now because her birth and the first few months of her life were harder for me, or because I regret the way she was born.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I'm starting to think that some of my issues stem from not being able to breastfeed. I pumped for 8 months before my supply dropped so much that I had to start supplementing. I wish that I was still BFing my son so we could have some alone time but he barely wants me to hold him long enough to snuggle. I was planning to BF for as long as possible and I never got the chance. I'm hoping that my next child will BF from the get go. I know we have agreed to wait until the first of the year but I'm really getting ancy to go ahead. I really want this pregnancy/birth to go so much better and I don't know how much longer I can put it off. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/redface.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Embarrassment">
 
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