mental health
Mental Health

My First Child: Expectations vs Reality

As a mum, you’re expected to love every single moment you spend with your kids. You get told to savour the moment, to enjoy it whilst it lasts. You’re expected to drop everything in order to devote 110% of your life to your offspring.

To the women who can do that, I salute you.

To the women who can’t do that, I salute you.

Motherhood is damn hard. It’s certainly not all it’s cracked up to be. It can be a massive struggle between overpowering love and adoration for this little being that you brought into the world, and utter frustration and anger at the way you are being ignored/spoken to/generally treated. Some days it’s very black and white, whilst others tend to merge.

Some mums just can’t cope. I was like that with my first child. I didn’t get the immediate rush of love I’d been expecting, and there were certainly no fireworks. I was later diagnosed with Postpartum OCD which was a harrowing experience, and I couldn’t bond properly with my son for months. I couldn’t be around him 24/7 – I needed space. I dreamed about ending maternity leave early and returning to an environment I knew and loved, with friends I could chat away to about anything and everything as long as it didn’t relate to children. I passed my child over as often as I could, and he had sleepovers with grandparents from a young age. Don’t get me wrong, I loved him, but I found it hard to enjoy him. It was such a struggle.

For ages, I felt like a terrible mum. It took me a while to come to terms with the changes in my life, and to realise that I could still be me as well as being Mummy. As soon as that registered, I began to relax. As soon as I relaxed, that bond with my son grew.

As a first time mum, you go into motherhood with all these expectations. All these dos and don’ts. It’s going to be a magical journey, and you’re going to love each second of it.

I can’t even begin to tell you what a load of rubbish that is. Becoming a mother is stressful, daunting, overwhelming. The journey is full of so many bumps and scrapes and complete catastrophes. It leaves you battered and bruised, often physically as well as emotionally.

But you know what? It is worth every second.

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2 Comments

  • Michelle

    πŸ‘πŸ½πŸ‘πŸ½πŸ‘πŸ½πŸ‘πŸ½ Thank you for sharing! I too have struggled with adjusting to motherhood so it’s nice to read something from that perspective. πŸ’•

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