Age 28+ First Time Mom's: How hard is it really?!

posted 1 week ago in Babies
  • poll: How difficult were the first 6 months of a new baby?
    Traumatic : (10 votes)
    18 %
    Terrible, but after that was okay : (9 votes)
    16 %
    Physically challenging, but e : (6 votes)
    11 %
    It really wasn't bad, I was just sleepy! : (30 votes)
    55 %
  • Post # 16
    Member
    2371 posts
    Buzzing bee

    I was 34 when DS was born. I’m now 35 with a 13 month old. The first month was very rough, mainly due to so little sleep. It gradually got better. After the first 6 weeks or so it all depended on how he slept. During sleep regressions it was tough. other times it was great. 

    It really started to get fun about three months when his personality really began to develop. For me going back to work also helped. I needed adult interaction and was really able to treasure the time we spent together.

    Post # 17
    Member
    421 posts
    Helper bee

    I was 29 when I had my child and I loved it. Now granted I had a really easy baby, always happy, didn’t cry unless there was a reason. I coslept, so I didn’t even feel very sleep deprived. I would wake up to feed him but then he would go back to sleep. I’m sure my experience would have been different it I had had a fussy baby. I found the toddler years to be more difficult than having an infant. 

    Post # 18
    Member
    616 posts
    Busy bee

    I think you hear a lot of negative stories because for a long time, that was pretty taboo. And it can be really isolating to have this new baby and for everyone to act like you should just be feeling pure joy constantly if you’re one of the people who feels like…oh my, this kind of sucks! And it just does for a lot of people, myself included! My daughter had really bad reflux, I had pretty bad anxiety, we had trouble breastfeeding…it was just all very hard. And on top of it, your hormones are all out of whack and your sleep is at the least, unpredictable and broken. I definitely spent more time crying than I ever have before in those first 6 weeks, just out of being overwhelmed! I had this brand new life to take care of and that was scary! BUT no matter how bad things are, there are people out there who have been through it and can assure you that you will survive. I found that life got a little easier when my daughter started smiling at me, because there was SOME reward instead of just a crying ball of need! And it just gets better from there.

    Hopefully you will have an easy baby! But just know that people don’t necessarily tell the bad stories to scare you, but to assure you that you’re normal if it isn’t all sunshine and roses from the start. It can be really lonely to feel like you’re supposed to feel deliriously happy all the time if that’s not your experience. And know that even if your baby is a total nightmare and you hate the newborn stage, everything changes and there are people who have been there. 

     

    Post # 19
    Member
    38 posts
    Newbee
    • Wedding: April 2014

    I was like you, fearing all the bad stories I would hear! I just had my son 6 months ago at 28, and I would say I look and feel better now than pre- pregnancy. I weigh 5 lbs less, love breastfeeding, and he is such a joy. He slept like 6 hours in a row by 4 weeks old, and has slept through the night 8pm- 7am since like 4 months old. I barely even felt sleep deprived after I had him and he only cried of hungry or tired. I feel like lots of people don’t share the good stories because they feel like they are either showing off or that they may “jinx” themselves. Hubby and I even fight less because many things we would bicker about before we don’t have time for or we’ll just start talking  about our son and laugh and smile. I’m a bit anxious if the toddler years will be more difficult but so far being a mom is way better than I expected. Definitely helps to have a hands on husband who does diaper changes and plays with the baby when I need to get ready before we go somewhere! 

    Post # 20
    Member
    541 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: October 2016

    I’m about where you are–30 weeks & 28…so no experience to share, but thanks for making this post 🙂 it’s nice to finally see at least a few comments from new moms that aren’t just talking about how horrible it all is. I’ve been listening to that for the last 6 months, and it’s gotten so disheartening…oh and then when people say “it’s so horrible, you’ll never feel rested again and your body will be all saggy and you’ll be caked in poo for the next 5 years…but it’s all worth it” I’m always thinking, really, because it doesn’t sound worth it at all…but then I try to remember, if having kids was really so terrible no one would ever have more than one. Best of luck with your pregnancy and new baby!

    Post # 21
    Member
    7695 posts
    Bumble Beekeeper
    • Wedding: October 2013

    i was 34 when i gave birth to my first.  the first 3 months were tough.  we struggled with breast feeding (i had a breast reduction, he was 3 weeks early and had tongue and lip ties).  that was our biggest issue.  and i was exhausted.  but i wouldn’t change it for the world. we ttc’ed for 2 years and he’s our IVF miracle.

    DS is the best kid in the world.  he’s easy going, flexible, always happy. i sleep trained at 6 months and he’s slept through the night since then.

    He is 15 months and we are expecting #2 thank you to an FET.

     

    Post # 22
    Member
    9033 posts
    Buzzing Beekeeper
    • Wedding: September 2013

    I have 2 and never felt things were horrible or terrible.  Some things can definitely be hard at times but I never felt like each day was awful or anything.  My first was a pretty easy baby- never cried at all and though she didn’t sleep all night she slept fairly well (woke up 1x at night from 7mo-15mo though and didn’t regulary sleep all night until she was 20mo).  But she was pretty easy otherwise.  Although she was a stubborn AF toddler. My second was colicky and puked all over me from reflux and intolerances so I’ve had to be dairy-free for awhile.  He is 7.5mo but he is still sort of cranky and whiny at times (he’s clingy so usually whiny when I’m not holding him or sitting by him).  And he hates to sleep so that’s fun.  I still feel pretty good most days although I have times where I am frustrated by his not wanting to sleep.  I had a super easy time breastfeeding both. I was 29 and 32 when I had them.  Felt great physically and I had pretty easy, uncomplicated vaginal births.  I will say the first week or two can be very very overwhelming and I did have the baby blues the first couple weeks but otherwise no PPD.  If anything I have more anxiety/worry than before.  And yeah, I don’t think I’ve slept a full 8 hours without waking up at least once in over 3 years now.  But I don’t feel tired all day or anything

    Post # 23
    Member
    7811 posts
    Bumble Beekeeper
    • Wedding: August 2012

    Dd was a pretty good baby so honestly I didn’t think that stage was too bad. She wasn’t a great sleeper so we ended up cosleeping, but you kind of get used to running on less sleep.

    DH is really great at helping with everything which makes things a lot easier too. I would probably sleep train earlier next time (we waited until she was like 14 months I think, because I’m a sucker, lol). But she will be 2 this month and sleeps fine now.

    My coworker on the other hand had a really high needs baby. Like he screamed constantly for the first 6 weeks of his life, regardless of anything they did/didn’t do. I felt awful for her. :/  So yeah shit happens, but you just have to hope for the best lol.

    Post # 24
    Member
    175 posts
    Blushing bee
    • Wedding: July 2014

    I’m 31 and had my DD when I was 30.  She’s a wonderful baby, but has definitely provided some challenges.  I think what I was least prepared for was how difficult breastfeeding is on a new mom.  Labor was uncomfortable, but not too bad to manage. Then immediately after delivery my baby left blisters on my nipples (the very first time that she fed!) and her latch didn’t really get to a comfortable place until around 6 weeks … then once that improved it was onto the next challenge as she was colicky from 6weeks-12weeks… So, I think that you need to mentally prepare yourself for some sleeplessness/challenges- have a plan for parenting decisions, but don’t keep it set in stone if something’s not working for you.  For example, if you’re exhausted and frustrated and need a chunk of more than 2 hours sleep then have your husband give the baby formula for a feeding- it’s not poison, your baby will be fine, you will still make milk .  The hardest part is that in the moment you feel like those kinds of decisions are life and death because you’re pretty tired and you love your baby so much that you agonize over what’s best for them.  

    Others have said this, but it’s really going to depend on your baby, each baby brings their own set of challenges. The best advice I was given was the mantra “this too shall pass” and having a good attitude really helps!  You can choose to take things in stride or freak out over them, so I recommend taking them in stride, lol.  

    Post # 25
    Member
    1495 posts
    Bumble bee

    I had twins (after long infertility journey and IVF), and omg the negativity! When I was pregnant, and would even mention I had twins- all I heard is “omg, poor you, it will be so hard, miserable, etc”. I was honestly terrified while pregnant of how “miserable” it all will be. Girls were born at 38 weeks, (no pre-term delivery as so many people felt the need to tell me about), scheduled c-section, I was walking that night and off all pain pills the day I came home (so 3 days after), lifting things, driving, walking, etc (and everyone told me all those stories about how awful c-section recovery will be). Twins are definelty hard (and I can’t compare it to 1 baby,  that is all we know), but not AS hard as strangers and internet made it sound. We bottle fed right away, so I was not tied to BF with 2 babies, others could help give bottle so I could take a break once in a while – I feel if I exclusively breastfed, it would be worse experience. The challanging part for me was awful anxiety and insomnia (not sleep deprivation because babies woke up, but becuase I could not sleep at all even when babies slept), but I had very bad GAD pre-babies, so that was expected. Also the never ending guilt- guilt that both are not getting enough attention, that I came back to work at 3 mo, that I feel irritated at times and don’t enjoy every moment, etc. I got this notion in my head how I am “supposed” to feel, and if I feel different I overanalyze it and beat myself up – I am working hard not to do that. But those are issues that I have to work on. I also have a very hands on husband, so I feel like we both do equal share of baby duties, if he was not hands on I would definetly get resentful. We do everything together after work and on weekends (except for when give each other time off) – feedings, bath, soothing, go to dr. appointments, etc. I think baby experience is very dependent on how supportive and involved partner is.

    Post # 26
    Member
    1495 posts
    Bumble bee

    jetsetbee :  I felt the same about the smiling, it was my favorite milestone so far (girls are 4 months)- some reward for all the work. And than I managed to feel guilty about feeling happy about the smiling – telling myself that I am selfish for wanting babies to meet my emotional needs of feeling rewarded. Ha. I overanalyze how I am supposed to feel and don’t way tooo much. But yes, smiling is the best!

    Post # 28
    Member
    1495 posts
    Bumble bee

    @pearlrose Love your attitude and how much you are enjoying your baby!

    utgirlie : And don’t listen to “You will not shower” from people…I never understood that. I had time to take a shower every day, twice a day with 2 during my maternity leave (and do laundry, dishes, watch shows, talk on the phone with a friend, etc). Babies nap, babies don’t walk yet, so even if baby is awake, can put him/her down, and worst case – baby will start crying in the middle of your shower – it is ok – finish the shower and go tend to your baby. Nothing will happen if baby cries for few minutes. I think a lot of it is about person’s attitude – some get so stressed out over unnecessary things. 

    Post # 29
    Member
    2694 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: September 2016

    The sleep deprivation was the biggest thing for me. Being perpetually sleep deprived makes me stabby. I had to learn to make time to rest and take naps. I was fortunate to be a SAHM for the first couple years so I could take naps with my kid. 

    I also found it challenging to be on such a restricted schedule after being pretty free to do what I wanted when I wanted for so much of my life beforehand. And only getting 3 things done in a day (and one of the things was “keep the baby alive”) when I was used to being more “effective” in my work days and even on weekends.

    The sleep deprivation though . . . It was the worst.

    Post # 30
    Member
    886 posts
    Busy bee

    I had my daughter at 28 going on 29 and had no issues with stamina.  What I was most shocked about and which no one really told me, was how hard/long the recovery would be for my body.  I was 2 weeks overdue so I had to be induced.  Had a vaginal birth with a massive epidural and my daughter came out sunny side up. My late husband was a commercial pilot so I was alone a lot with the baby but honestly she was such a good baby and didn’t have any colic or other issues.  I breastfed for 6 months (and started supplementing after about 4 months).  Now 21 years later she’s a pain in the ass.  LOL.  j/k  

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