I am pregnant and feel miserable, although I wanted to have a baby. Is this normal?
Many people expect pregnancy is a time full of joy and excitement, but this isn’t the case for everyone. It can be a very emotional time. Your life is about to change completely and it takes time for this to sink in. You’re probably trying to cope with some physical pregnancy symptoms, as well as everyday life stresses, such as work.
You don’t have to cope alone. Talk to your midwife or doctor about how you’re feeling, so they can help you.
You could also try talking to your partner too, if you have one, or someone else you can trust. They may not realise what you are going through. If you talk to someone about how you are feeling, you have a better chance of getting the support you need.
Read more about your mental health in pregnancy.
We were trying for over a year so why don’t I feel happy?
Don’t be too hard on yourself. You’ve probably had a difficult time getting to this point and may still be feeling the stress and anticipation.
We can’t always control our emotions and it’s normal to react to a new pregnancy differently from the way you’d imagined. Your hormones are probably causing some emotional ups and downs, too.
Try to focus on your growing baby and take care of yourself. Find out more about when you should look for extra help with your mental wellbeing.
I had trouble getting pregnant and had two cycles of IVF. Now I just have the usual scans and tests. Shouldn’t I be getting more support?
IVF and other methods of assisted conception can wreck some women’s confidence in their own bodies. If your body did not manage to conceive, why should it be able to carry a baby through to birth without constant help? This fear might be at the root of your feelings. It will mean that you may take a little time to adjust to the idea that you are essentially healthy and that your body will not let you down. With each normal routine test and visit, you will gradually gain in confidence.
Talk to your midwife or care team at the IVF clinic about how you feel. They may able to put your mind at rest or talk to you about options for getting more support.
I am five months pregnant and getting fed up with constant advice from people. How can I cope with the pressure?
The arrival of a new baby is always special and there are many reasons why people may be offering some well-meaning but uninvited advice. Perhaps your baby will be the first grandchild in the family or they will be very close in age to a friend’s baby. Generally, friends and family will just be very excited for you and want to help prepare you for what’s ahead.
This may be a little much for you now, but you may find that, after the baby is born, you’ll appreciate this more.
Then, you’ll be able to find ways to include them that will benefit you both. For example, they may look after the baby while you have a shower or take the baby for a walk while you get some sleep. Things like this will give them a chance to help you and bond with the baby, while you get some support.
For now, just take a deep breath and concentrate on taking care of yourself and your bump.
I’m three months pregnant and just feel tired and weepy. Will I ever be able to enjoy my pregnancy?
Try to remember that this tiredness does pass. These first few months are tiring because your baby is developing so fast and is using lots of your energy to do so. Hormones are probably causing your bouts of weepiness.
Make sure you are eating well and get plenty of rest. Accept any offers of help with other children or housework. The second trimester is usually less exhausting than the first, so you can look forward to an easier time then.
If as the pregnancy continues your mood does not lift and you find yourself crying more than normal, lose your appetite, or have trouble seeing any joy in the future then you should speak to your midwife or GP and ask for help. Some women do become depressed during pregnancy and you might need someone to talk to about how you are feeling.
What if I don’t love my baby?
It can be hard to imagine loving someone you haven’t met yet! Try talking to your baby in your tummy. Just as you can feel your baby turning and kicking and even hiccupping inside you in later pregnancy, your baby can hear your voice and can feel the touch when you stroke your bump.
“As a first time mum I expected to be ecstatic at my 20 week scan, regardless of the baby’s gender. But actually, I felt a little disappointed at the time. It’s completely different now and I’m so in love with my little boy.”
Many women say that seeing the baby at the second scan, when you get the best view, is the moment that they really began to believe in the baby and to love them. Some women feel an intense love for their baby when they are born, but for others it takes a few weeks to adjust. Either way, it’s entirely normal. It doesn't have to be 'love at first sight' for you to be a great mum.