Every pregnancy and every pregnant woman is unique. There is no such thing as ‘normal’ when it comes to emotions during pregnancy. While some women may feel an instant connection to their unborn child from the moment they pee on the stick, for others it can take until the birth (or even after the birth) for that connection to truly take hold.
It may not be something that many pregnant women discuss openly, but in fact a lot of women do struggle to bond with their babies during pregnancy. If this is your first pregnancy, those first rushes from inside your uterus can be hard to identify as your baby’s movements. If you have experienced loss before, you may find it hard to think positively about the pregnancy, and may subconsciously be delaying bonding as a form of self protection.
Or, perhaps, you are simply bonding with your baby in your own time. Pregnancy can be a daunting time, and you may feel so overwhelmed with the pregnancy and impending motherhood that you feel simply unable to bond with your baby just yet. As you grow closer to your due date, you may feel worried that you do not yet feel that connection with your baby.
Bonding With Your Unborn Baby
Here are some things you can try to help you bond with your bump:
Baby Bonding Tip #1: Use Your Voice
When your baby is born, she will recognise your voice and turn towards you whenever she hears it. She will remember your voice because she has spent months listening to you give presentations at work, natter to your mum on the phone, and belt out tunes like, “R-E-S-P-E-C-T!” in the shower. Spend some time each day talking to your baby, telling her about the things you will do together, and how you are feeling that day. You may find that your baby responds to the sound of your voice, and begins kicking and nudging you as you talk. If you feel uncomfortable talking to your bump, trying singing instead.
Baby Bonding Tip #2: Nudge Back
For now, your baby’s only method of communication is bumps, kicks and nudges. You have probably noticed that your baby becomes particularly active when you sit down to rest. Play with your baby by responding to her movements, gently poke back when she nudges you, and see what she does. You can also rub your belly in the area you feel movements.
Baby Bonding Tip #3: Get Snap Happy
One thing that makes bonding seem difficult during pregnancy, is that you have no idea what your baby look likes. Though she is growing inside you right now, she can feel like a total stranger. If you were given scan pictures at your hospital appointment, spend time looking at these photos each day. Frame a photograph to keep by your desk at work, set it as the lock screen on your smartphone, and stick it on your fridge.
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