Post # 1
(I don’t really feel that Nesting is the best place for this post, as it is definitely a downer and I don’t want to drag bees happily contemplating, approaching or currently dealing with parenthood down… but I don’t know where else to put it. Apologies and please feel free to move if there is a better place!)
Bees, sometimes I get scared that I am not strong enough to be a mother. I read all these heartbreaking stories of women who go through miscarriages and stillbirths, care for children with severe disabilities or fatal diseases, survive seeing their children grow up to commit terrible crimes or make tragic mistakes. And every time, I think to myself, “I don’t know if I could do that.” I worry that I am too selfish, cowardly, and weak to deal with the really hard parts of being a parent. I really want to have children someday, but I worry sometimes that I’m not a good enough person, and maybe I should leave it to the people who are.
Now, I realize a lot of this is just paranoia and pointless worry, and I think it’s probably true that once I have a child, I will feel that overwhelming love and natural protective instinct that all mothers say they have, and would find a way to deal with all of the situations listed above, should they arise. I guess I’m just wondering if any other bees who don’t currently have children feel like this, or if any mama bees out there felt like this before you had children. Does the prospect of being someone’s mother just utterly terrify you sometimes?
Post # 3
@roseohseven: You sound so much like me in this post, it’s scary. So take comfort in knowing that you’re not alone!
I’m going to tell you something that two of my close girlfriends (neither of whom have children) told me a couple of weeks ago when we were having brunch:
We were talking about my upcoming wedding and the fact that my fiance and I plan to start trying to have children fairly soon after we get married (definitely within the first year, as we will be 29 [me] and 31 [him] by the time we get married this November). I was discussing some of the things we’ve been planning to do to help with the added expenses and responsibilities of having a baby.
They were both impressed by the amount of thought we’d already put into it, as well as some of the things we’ve already done (such as my fiance agreeing to start working different hours at work to allow for more time at home with a child since my job doesn’t allow that type of flexibility).
I mentioned that I was still really nervous about it, and didn’t know if I’d even be a good mom. The reply? “The fact that you’re even thinking about this stuff and worrying about whether or not you’ll be a good mom proves that you will be.”
I don’t know if that makes you feel any better, but it definitely made me feel a little more at ease. Am I still scared? Yes, of course (on many levels)! But their words made me feel at least a little better. (Hopefully they’ll do the same for you.)
Post # 4
Currently 13 weeks pregnant. I don’t think that anyone goes into being a first time mom thinking they will be perfect at it. It’s a huge responsibility that can be really hard to fully wrap your mind around! I think you have to go into it knowing that there will absolutely be times where you will fail your child(ren), your child(ren) will disappoint you, and mistakes will be made sometimes. It’s all a learning process that doesn’t come with a manual. I think it’s normal to have some anxiety/fear. That means that you care!
Post # 5
Those fears don’t go away after you become a mom, or even after your child gets older, in my experience. Being a parent can be incredibly scary, even with the healthiest child who doesn’t get themselves into serious trouble. I remember reading somewhere that having a child is like having your heart walk around outside your body unprotected – I always thought it sounded silly but there are times when I send my daughter out the door and it does feel just like that.
“I really want to have children someday, but I worry sometimes that I’m not a good enough person, and maybe I should leave it to the people who are.”
My personal feeling is that often those who aren’t good people and won’t be good parents are not usually those who worry about this. The people who do agonize over whether or not they’ll be good parents, whether they can handle what parenthood brings… Those are the ones who make every effort to be the best possible parents to their children, even when times are tough.
Post # 6
@roseohseven: YES! ALL THE TIME! I fear that im going to miss my “Me Time” or that (like you said) I wont be “Good Enough”… My thoughts… you wont know until youre there and the thought of never being a mom is equially as scary
Post # 7
@roseohseven: I didn’t think I’d be strong enough to go through 1 miscarriage let alone the 6 that I have on top of the 17 months prior to my first pregnancy of trying with no success. Yet here I am, still trying. I don’t think you know how strong you are until you have to deal with a very crappy situation and then you just do. Don’t let fears like this rule you. No matter how painful this journey has been for me, it’s still be worth it. Hopefully you don’t have to go through what I have, but if you do or any of the other stuff that you mentioned, I know you’ll find the strength where you least expect it. *hugs*
Post # 8
I’m not a parent, but I’d say the fact that you have these worries makes you more ready and able than you think you are. It sounds like your fears/worries are common and the fact that you recognize certain weaknesses means you are at least able to face them should the time come. To me, thats a lot better than going into something like having a child thinking it will all be daisys and roses and that you will just be a perfect mother no matter what.
I’m getting a puppy this summer, and even that scares me a little bit. I’m at the point of not even thinking of kids in the near enough future to be nervous about it yet, but I’m sure once I get there I’ll be a little bit terrified. 🙂
Post # 9
Parenthood is about loving your child, not being perfect. I’m not a parent, so I’m saying this as the very lucky recipient of my mothers endless love. She’s not perfect, and we went through some hard times, ESP when I was a horrid teenager. But no matter what, she loved me. looking back, I can see that her love is what gave me the foundation to believe in myself. You won’t be perfect, but since you’re worried about not being good enough, you are already good enough. Only someone who cares does that.
Post # 10
@kittyface: Huge fat ditto to this.
My pregnancy was unplanned so I never had time to worry about everything (and honestly didn’t know how prevalent some things could be). I will say, as a mother, you learn how to be the best parent. No one goes into it with a rule book.
My son just turned 7, and I deal with this all the time! There are so many things I never would have imagined knowing how to do or how to deal with it, until I actually had to. He’s finishing up 1st grade this month. Let me tell you how terrifying it is to send your child off to school. I worry about his peers, social pressures, what other kids are bringing from home and teaching him…then there’s the teenage years I worry about constantly. Alcohol, drugs, sneaking out, lying. I’m so not ready. But, I know, once the time gets here I will find a way to deal.
It really is true what they say, about a mothers’ love. Bah I always get choked up when I sit and think about it. The love I have for my son, no matter how unprepared I was for him at 21, is what pushes me through. I’m his advocate, his safe haven, and his supporter. I brought him into the world and owe him that.
Worry doesn’t stop once you have a successful pregnancy. Parenting is consumed with worry (especially with what is happening in the world these days), but the chance to be someone’s mommy 100% trumps any other setback you may experience as a parent.
Post # 11
Aaw you sound like me! You know, the fact that you are even worrying about this shows you are caring and would make a good mum I think. I have a newborn baby and while i am still terrified, i think we have a way of coping with whatever is presented to us. But you are right to think carefully as being a mum is a huge decision and a great responsibility.
Post # 12
Mother of 3 here, one passed away 2 weeks after birth but my child nonetheless. It is scary and I am sort of a worry wart lol. Even when my kids are playing rough im thinking of wrestling accidental deaths, are at school im thinking of Sandy Hook, or just out with me and daddy im thinking of someone coming up robbing us for my sons fake gold chain. Its always something as I am really wanting to try for one more but im scared of another loss (I have an incompetant cervix and cant carry to term (1st son born at 20 weeks, 2nd son born at 29 weeks and 1st daughter born at 26 weeks) all preemies and I am a vet NICU mom for sure. This just helps me to realize that my maker felt i was strong enough to handle dealing with preemies and being a mother over all. He will never give you more than u can bear. You will be just fine! its life
Post # 13
Only 4w pregnant but this thread provides me comfort.
Post # 14
- Wedding: June 2014 - DD born 2015 DS born 2017
@roseohseven: I’m a kindergarten teacher and planning to ttc in 2-3 years.
More than 50% of miscarriages are lost due to genetic abnormalities, and as for stillbirths, with our medical technology it’s much rarer than it used to be. I feel so sorry for mums who went through so much loss hundreds of years ago losing their children pre-term and to disease and famine.
As for children with disabilities, personally I will be having the test to check for disabilities in utero, and I am prepared to go through with an abortion in teh worst case scenario. BUT your chance of having a disabled child with no family history and under the age of 35 is very, very low. Old sperm can sometimes cause foetal problems so when ttc your partner should cum 1-2 days before trying to conceive (so use a condom that time) to make sure the ‘batch is fresh’.
As for your child growing up to be a bad child, if you know you and your partner are good people, chances are your child will be. Of course you can’t always protect your child from harmful friends, but statistics show that most crime-commiting children come from broken homes and poor, unloved households.
In summary, it is very unlikely any of the bad things you’re worrying about will happen 🙂
Post # 15
I have had the same thought too. I have a coworker who has a 22yo old son with special needs and I have often wondered if I would be able to find the strength he has if I were in his situation.
Last week I read a very interesting article written by a pregnant woman whose first child has Wolf-Hirschehorn syndrome. She is almost afraid to love her unborn child for fear this child too will have health issues. It is enlightening, heartbreaking, and inspiring. From what I read, it sounds like you find the strength because you don’t have a choice. I can’t imagine what it is like to have a baby that isn’t healthy. The author says she can’t imagine what it’s like to have a healthy baby.
Here’s a the link:
Post # 16
- Wedding: September 2011 - Baby boy 12/2015
I worry about all these things, yet having a child is an experience that I so much want that I am sure I will make mistakes, who doesn’t? Being a parent is a special bond you have with another human being, and for more that one worries, we have to realize they are their own individual beings and need to be free to make mistakes, fail, achieve, get dissapointed, be happy etc. just like we have. We are the ones that will teach them that making mistakes is natural and to not be afraid. I guess I am open to take in what God has for me. I am feeling a bit inspired. Good luck to you!