Love takes time…or does it? Bonding with your baby.

me and my monkey

Attempting some of that early bonding

I have wanted to write this post for so long but I have really struggled with the content. I know there is something important here to talk about but I have been frightened to put it all down.  I’m mostly frightened because I don’t want for my son to one day read this and think that for one moment in his beautiful little life that I didn’t love him because that is not true at all. 

I loved that kid from the moment he was an idea in my mind. The day his father and I decided to have a baby together I saw a little boy in my mind who looked exactly like Monkey does now (yes creepy I know) and from that moment I knew that was who was coming to me. And from that moment, I was in love.

So yes, I had some trouble bonding with my baby. But I had no trouble loving my baby.

I feel it is important to make this distinction as I came across this article called When love takes time by Pinky McKay while doing some research on the topic. I was trying to find the right kind of inspiration for this post so thank you Pinky, you gave it to me. Pinky is a very famous attachment parenting proponent and I’m sure she truly had the best intentions when writing this article but I was quite offended. Her premise is that if you aren’t bonding with your baby it is because it is taking time to love your baby. This wasn’t the case for me and I was bothered as I didn’t like the idea of someone with so much reach getting out there and publicly saying: problems bonding = you do not love. It’s pretty harsh.

I think the fact of the matter is this: our babies are just tiny little people. And some people you click with right away and some people it takes time to get to know. And it just turns out that sometimes one of those people you need to get to know is your baby. And that’s OK. Getting to know isn’t necessarily learning to love.

But then I thought about it and I thought well maybe this is true for some people. Maybe that IS how they feel. And then I thought how wonderful it would be to be able to write a piece with comments from many different mothers who struggled to bond with their baby(ies). I can put all those pieces together and publish it and maybe one mum out there will read it and say “YES that one there is EXACTLY how I feel“.

Wouldn’t that be just delightful? To help a new mum feel normal when she is feeling anything but. It warms my heart to think I might be able to do something that can help during those super tough times.

Obviously there is a bit more of a story from me. How I realised I wasn’t bonding and how and when it all changed but I’ll save that for the post with the stories. Mine can be in there alongside the others.

Now, for this, I need some help from you, my wonderful followers.

If this happened to you and you are willing to contribute your experience then please, I’d love to hear it. Everyone will remain anonymous (unless they don’t want to be) so please don’t be concerned about that.  All you need to do is email me at mummyflyingsolo@gmail.com or you can use my online Contact Form and briefly tell me about your experience.  Once I have a decent amount of submissions I’ll publish them on this blog.

Please, share this post around your mummy friends too so they can share their stories and help other new mummies out there.

Thank you for sharing your stories with me.

Rachael aka mummyflyingsolo x

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43 thoughts on “Love takes time…or does it? Bonding with your baby.

  1. That is such a great point – not bonding DOESN’T mean not loving. I think this is a fantastic thing to share and it might help alleviate the guilt mums feel for not feeling total adoration and joy when they look at the little person that has just ripped his/her way through their birth canal!

    • I posted this on @http://mommytrainingwheels.com reblog
      I have 7 children, and have always felt, that while it was my 1st responsibility to care and protect my baby, It took awhile to feel real love for them. It was like I had to get to know them first, introduce them to their siblings, spend some time with them. people are usually horrified when i say this but it’s the truth. I love each and everyone of them more then life now, but it took a little while.

      • Ooooo I didn’t think to go and see if the reblogs had comments. Thank you for coming over here and posting this. I am not horrified by your comment AT ALL. They really are just new people in the world that we need to get to know. It takes time sometimes.

  2. Thank you for being so honest and sharing. Really we all go through lots of things that we could share and help each other through but most of the time we are to scared to admit it (I have a big one myself). Hugs!

  3. I can’t contribute because I didn’t have a bonding issue; however, what a great way to help out others! I love reading about other parents and their concerns and issues – even if I didn’t have their issue, it makes me feel better about the ones I do have! 🙂

  4. Hey Rachael, I love this post! I will definitely share my experiences with you via email. In a nutshell, I experienced bonding issues with my first but not with my second — so I can draw those differences out for you. I’ll email you soon. xoxo

  5. Great post Rachel, I think this will help so many women who feel like failures for not bonding with their newborns immediately which is so very far from the truth. You’re so right…love and bonding are different. And there really is a different type of bonding that goes on with each child you have. I bonded with both of mine but in a different way and on a different timeline but I love them both to the moon and back…in different ways, because they’re different people. It is important not to judge others nor to judge yourself in the process.

    On a totally different note, how did you and Kate get the fun snowflakes??

    • Thanks Kerry. Yes of course it is different as each child is a different person. We seem to discount this because of their babies bit we shouldn’t.

      I stumbled across the snowflake feature recently in WordPress but can’t remember where! Do a little search. It says something like snowflakes until 6 Jan.

  6. I have shared this on a mommy Facebook group belong to.
    While I did not have a difficult time bonding with Z when she was born, I feel for any woman that has had difficulty with it. Being a mom leaves one feeling completely vulnerable and everyone loves to judge moms it seems nowadays. I love the way you write about this complicated topic and look forward to reading more about it.

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  8. So true. I’m glad you’re going to run some more posts on this. I thought before having kids I would have this issue. I did not, but I know it exists. It would be so nice for women to be able to read real stories so they know they’re not alone. And to see how other women handled it and the outcomes.

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  10. Reblogged this on mommytrainingwheels and commented:
    A mother that has trouble bonding with her newborn is a delicate subject, but an important one. Rachel over at mummy flying solo has bravely come out and made a point to talk about it. He view: trouble bonding does not mean trouble loving. She is looking for other mamas who, like her, have had trouble bonding with their baby. If you feel up to sharing, please contact her, she is looking for guest posters who are willing to recount their story (under the cover of anonymity). Please reblog/share her post, I think that the more people this reaches, the better.

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  13. Reblogged this on The HSD and commented:
    Calling all mums! My friend Rachael is tackling a perhaps taboo topic regarding moms bonding with their babies! Her words:

    “Wouldn’t that be just delightful? To help a new mum feel normal when she is feeling anything but. It warms my heart to think I might be able to do something that can help during those super tough times.”

    If you have a bonding story to share, would you consider doing so? It would be anonymous. We’re all in this life together; sharing makes it wonderful.

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  18. Excellent! I can’t wait to read it :). I haven’t had any bonding struggles, but I was thinking the other day that I want to write a post about how I don’t like babies. Sure, I love the crap out of my kids and enjoy parts of the baby-phase, but babies just aren’t my thing. I’m digging this toddler business and I LOVE teenagers, but I’m never going to be that person that ever says to anyone, “soak it up, they grow up so quickly.” Good. Please learn to sit up and walk on your own. Hahaha. I sound like an ass. Though, I’m sure I’m not the only one. Loves!

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