There are so many things in life that get easier with time, and feel like a breeze the second time round. From job interviews and cooking, some things just make more sense after doing it once already. Pregnancy is like this. Well, kind of like this.
Obviously, no two pregnancies are going to be the same. The first pregnancy and the second will be completely different, but have many similarities. It sounds like a contradiction, but this is the case. There are many myths surrounding the second pregnancy that instil concern, doubt, and anxiety in expectant moms. But hey, there are so many myths around the first pregnancy too, and those got disproven along the way, right?
The first pregnancy is a joyous experience, with feelings such as hope and wonder fluttering about the pregnant body. Even though the second time round that pregnant body is a little more tired and little more stretched, the same kind of feelings are present.
Many moms get into the mindset that the second pregnancy won’t be as magical and won’t be as beautiful. Sure, things will be different, but the actual process of bringing a baby into your arms and into the world is the same. That is the type of feeling that doesn’t disappear too easily.
Some of these myths are valid thoughts and concerns about the second pregnancy. Moms are entitled to their doubts and worries, even if they seem irrational to the outside world. Acknowledge these myths and the uncertainties they are founded on. Then sit back and watch them be debunked along the 9 month journey of the second pregnancy.
15 Mom Won’t Love The Second Baby As Much
One to note about love is that it is a progressive and fluctuating emotion. Love can be felt at different intensities at different times, but it is something underlying that grows and changes each day. With a baby, love tends to be experienced and felt even when it isn’t actively noticed.
The intensity of love for the first newborn can be startling and overwhelming. It makes sense to think that you’ll never experience that kind of feeling again. The depth of this emotion is something really special. While it won’t be recreated with baby number two, another new intensity will be released in the form of love.
The capacity to love a child and then another is greater than parents realise. It may not happen all at once, but throughout the days with baby number two you’ll experience great waves of love that will blow this myth right out of the water.
14 Things Will Be Twice As Hard
It’s the second time, so things will be twice as hard, right? Now things are doubled and all those difficulties of having one baby are multiplied. That saying ‘double trouble’ is about to take on a literal meaning, isn’t it?
Well, not necessarily. Sure, things aren’t going to get simpler or easier. That isn’t what parenthood is about. But you’ve already spent time with baby number one ironing the kinks and figuring out what you’re actually doing with this whole baby business. In a way, the hard yards are done and now you get to refine your skills with baby number two.
Sure, things will be a little more difficult now you’ve got two little humans to look after. Catching a nap or sitting back for a moment of peace might become non-existent, but actually getting the mom things done won’t be as challenging. You’ve got this, you’re ready for round two!
13 Whatever Worked The First Time Will Work Again
Ok, so we know mom knows what she’s doing because there’s already a baby doing it’s growing up thing well in the picture. However, that baby didn’t come with instructions. And if it did, they were probably more like guidelines that worked only 1% of the time.
So you were figuring out baby number one as you went. Some things worked, some things didn’t. When things worked, you celebrated and high 5’ed yourself because you did a good job. But guess what, just because those things worked one time, doesn’t mean they will work again. They might not even have worked twice with baby number one, so there is no guarantee that they’ll work with baby number two.
The point is that raising a baby is much about experimentation and figuring it out along the way. That is completely ok and it is one of the best parts of the adventure. Sure, give things a go that were a success with baby number one, but just don’t expect total success.
12 Mom Won’t Have As Much Time For The Second Baby
With babies, time is a funny thing. It is more about quality than quantity. Granted, baby number one was the sole focus of mom’s attention. Sure, baby number two has to be balanced around the ongoing needs of baby number one.
However, baby number two is still going to get plenty of special moments and time from you. These moments will be enriched with loving quality that is more important than all the hours in the world. There are certain things that baby number one no longer needs (depending on their age). Things like breastfeeding, diaper changes, and soothing newborn cuddles are things solely for baby number two. These special moments are what creates a bond and this time is vital for the growth of the relationship between mom and baby. Just because you have to spend time with baby number one doesn’t mean you’re neglecting the second baby or that baby number two is missing out on anything.
11 Breastfeeding Won’t Work As Well
Women’s bodies go through an awful lot and tend to bounce back with resilience. Even though certain parts of the body will never be the same again after the first pregnancy, they are still perfectly functional. Sure, things might be a little loose and floppy, but they’re still doing their job.
This is very true for the breasts. These delightful lumps of fat on the chest go through so much in a woman’s lifetime. From adolescence to pregnancy, they’ve dealt with plenty. Breastfeeding is just another box to tick off and they’re going to do it with no worries at all.
The breasts will be totally fine during the second pregnancy and able to fill with nourishing milk for baby. Of course, with any pregnancy there is the potential that your baby won’t take to the nipple straight away. This is quite normal and has nothing to do with how many pregnancies you’ve had.
10 Pregnancy Symptoms Will Be More Noticeable
Let’s start off by establishing the fact that the body is already different and changed from the first pregnancy. So moms aren’t starting off on the same footing as they did the first time round. The pregnancy symptoms might be the same, but they might just look a bit different.
For instance, morning sickness can go either way. It can either be way worse or way easier than the first time around. Other more physical pregnancy symptoms, like spider veins and swollen feet might manifest in a more prominent way. These might be more noticeable because your body is already more sensitive to changes from the first pregnancy.
Pregnancy is never going to look the same under any circumstances. It will look completely different for you compared to your sister or your best friend. It will look different from the first pregnancy to the second, third, fourth, and beyond. Even if the symptoms are more noticeable, nobody really pays attention to these. They just notice that you’re pregnant and are happy for you.
9 The Baby Will Be Born Earlier
Just like the labor isn’t always easier with the second baby, it doesn’t necessarily happen earlier either. There is just as much chance of the second baby being born at 42 weeks as there is at 39 weeks. There is basically no way of telling when it’s going to happen and if it’s going to be on time, early, or overdue.
Pregnancy is something you just roll with. Whether you like it or not, you can’t control much about the timing of when your baby wants to enter the world. This is bad news for moms who love planning, but it is reality.
You can get a good indication of whether your second baby will be born early or right on time based on what baby number one did. This can even be influenced by if you yourself were born early or late, or right on that due date. Either way, there are still no guarantees. Benchmark dates shouldn’t be taken for gospel. Circle it on the calendar, but don’t wake up a week before thinking baby number two knows to come early.
8 The Pregnancy Weight Will Disappear Quicker
Maybe this is more of a hope than a myth, but it is definitely a valid thought on women’s minds. Likewise, the inverse is a valid thought as well, that if the pregnancy weight stayed around and was never really lost, the same will happen again.
Whether you are hoping to slim down straight away or worried about staying bigger after the second pregnancy, there is really no point dwelling on it. Either way, things are never really going to be the same. Pregnancy makes the body change and makes things stretch and grow. The hips and pelvis will stay slightly bigger and the breasts will be a little saggier. These are just facts of pregnancy. You know your own body and know what ‘normal’ is for you. The ultimate aim after any number of pregnancies is getting your body to a condition where you are happy, healthy, and able to be the best mom you can be.
7 Baby Number Two Will Weigh More
Sure, some second babies do weigh more and some don’t. On average, the second baby tends to be larger. For instance, research in Scandinavia found that second borns weigh about 138 grams more than the first born child.
But this doesn’t apply across the board and there is little way of telling whether it will apply to your baby. After all, a higher birth weight isn’t based solely on whether or not you’ve had a baby before. There are other factors that influence the baby’s birth weight. Things that tend to make babies weigh more include mother’s age and weight as the main contributors.
As long as the baby comes out happy and healthy, it doesn’t matter too much what they weigh. The birth weight is important to assess certain health factors, and of course important for the baby’s birthing announcement. However, it isn’t a competition between the siblings who weighs more, although it might become one if they develop some healthy sibling rivalry!
6 Giving Birth Will Be More Complicated
If moms aren’t thinking that the second birth will be easier than before, they’re worried it’s going to be more complicated. Oh, the never ending worries of motherhood! They certainly don’t disappear with the second pregnancy.
It is a valid concern to think about what type of delivery it is going to be for baby number two. After all, you already have a rough idea of what giving birth looks like. Although you love your first baby unconditionally and most of the birthing room scenes have been repressed, you can’t help but remember that pain, the screaming, and the tiring pushing that never seemed to end.
Of course you might be worried that the second pregnancy will have a more complicated end. However, if you’ve done everything right throughout the pregnancy and taken care of your body, the chances of a complicated birth are significantly less. There’s never any guarantees, but that also means there is little point worrying too much.
5 Now Baby Number One Will Have A Best Friend
Two kids in the house can mean best buddies, or arch enemies. In fact, over time, it will probably mean both. The age difference between the kids and their personalities will have a big impact on whether or not they get along. Sibling rivalry is part of growing up and kids are guaranteed to fight at different times. Nonetheless, an overriding sense of love and affection will dominate their relationship, even if it doesn’t seem that way at times.
Realistically, you shouldn’t go into pregnancy number two thinking that there won’t be any disagreements between the two kids. Expect things like “he’s touching my stuff!” and “make her stop” to come out from one child or the other in a whining tone. At some point, one child is probably going to accuse the other never being caught for doing naughty things and the other is probably going to accuse of you picking favourites. Kids will be kids.
4 Mom Will Feel The Baby Move Earlier
While expectant mom’s might be more alert to their pregnancy body the second time around, it doesn’t necessarily mean they will feel the baby moving any sooner. This is more something expectant moms just shouldn’t get their hopes up about during the second pregnancy.
There is no real timeframe to indicate when you’re going to feel baby moving and kicking. It is something that will always catch you off guard, no matter how many times it happens. Be grateful for the times that you do feel the baby move, but don’t sit back thinking you know exactly when it will happen during the second pregnancy.
If you felt the baby first move at 29 weeks in the first pregnancy, you shouldn’t be highlighting that date on the calendar and waiting for baby to move before then this time around. That’s too much pressure. You might feel it earlier than you did the first time round, or you might feel it later. Either way, you’ve got a baby moving inside there and that’s a good thing!
3 Breastfeeding A Toddler Is Dangerous During Pregnancy
This is applicable to moms who are gearing up for round two with a toddler on their hands. Weaning the first baby is a process that happens while they are a toddler. There is no right or wrong age to cut a toddler off breastmilk and it will happen in the right time for mom and toddler. If there does happen to be overlap between weaning the toddler and getting bigger with baby number two, that isn’t an issue.
The hormones in your body with pregnancy might change the taste of breastmilk. This sometimes leads to the toddler deciding that the milk tastes gross now and self-wean. It can be a blessing in disguise if you’ve been struggling to get the toddler to enjoy eating solids! However, in most cases breastfeeding while pregnant isn’t an issue. Of course, you’ll have to explain to your toddler what’s going on with your body so that they understand to be gentle around the area. Things are going to be extra sensitive now, after all. Some women have even been known to keep breastfeeding their toddler after baby number two is born. Talk about a work-out for the breasts!
2 Baby Number One Will Resent Mom
This is a valid insecurity that many expectant moms feel once they get pregnant the second time around. There is nothing wrong with feeling this sentiment, but it is something that needs to be acknowledged and processed early on.
Yes, baby number one has had your sole focus for their whole life at this point. Whatever age they are, they are going to experience a lot of disturbance to the life they have known so far with a new addition to the family. Resentment might be one of the emotions baby number one experiences, but this is something that can be overcome.
Developing emotional intelligence in children is really important. Discussing the pregnancy and explaining what this means for everyone in the family is something you need to do early on with your first child. Give them time to process the situation. Provide them with strategies to understand the changes that will occur. Even give them some vocabulary to express themselves, like “I know this will be confusing for you” or “you might feel jealous but you don’t need to”. Reassuring the first child that you love them unconditionally is what they need throughout this process.
1 The Delivery Process Will Be The Same
Remember how we already said that nothing is going to be the same when it comes to raising baby number two? Well, the same goes for delivery baby number two. It’s an experience that can’t be compared or based on what happened the first time around.
So for the first baby you were only in labor for 4 hours and had a smooth delivery? That’s great. Or you had a labor from hell that was never ending. That’s not so great. Whichever way it went the first time, baby number two could bring either of those outcomes to the table. There is no way of telling what what little baby has planned to make its grand entrance to the world. You’ve just got to sit back, try to relax through the labor pain, and provide the birthing canal. Sounds easy, right? Well, at least you already know that it isn’t!