Bringing a child in this world is a life-changing event, that’s a fact. For mother and partner, but not to be underestimated: also for grandparents and possibly for other close family. And the impact is probably the greatest with the arrival of a first child.
Sometimes this is a completely positive experience, for all those involved. An easy breezy pregnancy. A beautiful healthy baby that brings joy and fulfilment. A young mother who recovers quickly from the delivery. A couple that feels completely at home in the new role and is swiftly at ease. Taking care of the baby is effortless. And the family enjoys this wonderful time completely. This is entirely possible.
Sometimes, unfortunately, this is a completely negative experience and the parents and baby need external support, guidance and care from day one.
And sometimes – often – it lies somewhere in between. You find yourself sitting on cloud, but that cloud is sometimes a fluffy white cloud and at other times it’s a heavy, dark-grey full of heavy rain cloud. Even though a healthy and very much wanted and expected baby has entered the world and your life after a completely normal pregnancy and delivery. Even though you took prenatal classes, you read countless books about pregnancy and parenting and you think you know that it’s not always going to be easy and smooth, this doesn’t really sink in. People often don’t realise that a life-changing event comes more often than not with a significant adjustment period, simply because it impacts every aspect of one’s life so profoundly.
A pregnancy is not an illness, but also not a given. All the physical changes can put a woman quite out-of-balance. And a pregnancy can just as likely do that with a partner of the couple
For all of this and more I offer pregnancy or prenatal counseling.
A delivery has so many aspects, that even a medically perfect delivery can be hard to process for a mother and/or partner. Childbirth counseling can be a relief for this.
And becoming a mom or dad also doesn’t happen to everyone as naturally, spontaneously or smoothly as people imagine or expect. It’s said that “the moment a child is born, a mother is born as well”. This is likely true, but the birth of a mother or father can be a (long) process. This because in our time and society becoming a mother or father is nothing short of a complete reconstruction of one’s identity. Everything from relations, job to hobbies and needs such as sleeping, eating, sports and sex has to be rearranged. And while nature has made sure through physical and biological processes that we spontaneously want to take care of our babies, societal evolution counteracts this somewhat.
This identy reconstruction often leads to a difficult adjustment to this life-changing event and to the new role. The good news is that it’s not an illness (though it can sometimes veer towards an illness) and postpartum counseling can help you in your search for a new identity.
The identity of a grandparent is also affected by the birth of a (first) grandchild, even though at a different level of intensity that that of a (first-time) parent. And because of these changes, the relationship between parents and grandparents can also get quite a punch.
Every person that experiences difficulties with the coming of a new child in the family can benefit from talking about this with someone.
Contact me and we can look together at what is going on.