Pregnancy is beautiful, but it's not particularly comfortable. Being pregnant means gaining weight and stretching our skin as far as it can go. It also means a person will sit on our bladders for nine long months. Every pregnant woman has a right to admit that it can be a very uncomfortable experience.
Women who carry low, meaning that the baby hangs around the bottom of their bellies as opposed to the top or middle, have a whole different dimension of issues to deal with. From being extremely uncomfortable to dealing with weird comments from total strangers, carrying low means that pregnancy can be even harder than mom previously expected.
There are theories about why moms carry low, and most doctors think the baby's position in the womb may prohibit him from staying higher. It's also possible that smaller babies fall further down in the womb because they are tiny and can fit there. Whatever the reason, some women just have low hanging bellies the minute they start showing, and that's how it stays throughout the pregnancy.
Being a mom who carries low is like being a part of a secret club. Only other women who carry low know all of the challenges that come along with it. It's no danger to the baby, but it can be inconvenient for mom in ways she might not have expected, and only other moms who have walked in her shoes will understand.
15 Maternity Clothes Drama
Maternity clothes are supposed to help moms feel comfortable and stylish while pregnant. They work for many women, keeping the belly covered and helping mom feel good while growing a person. However, women who carry low will notice early on that maternity clothes are not the magic for them that they are for other moms.
Women who carry low will find that their stomachs often can't be fully covered by a shirt meant to cover high-carrying women. They keep trying to pull it down and over their baby bump, but it refuses to go. When it comes to maternity bottoms, it's hard to pull them up to where they need to be because mom's stomach is right where the waistline should go. Pulling them over isn't an option, so mom often feels like she sags while she is pregnant.
Dresses work, if mom wants to wear dresses for the entire pregnancy. Otherwise it is tricky to find the right fit.
14 Non-Stop Pee
Every woman feels the pain of constant peeing while pregnant, but no one feels it more than a woman who is carrying low. Carrying low means the baby, who is already pressing on mom's bladder, is even further down pressing harder at all times. It makes even the smallest amount of urine in the bladder feel like a waterfall ready to overflow.
Going to the bathroom constantly is annoying, and women who carry low may also find they don't make it to the bathroom. Sneezing, coughing, or even just the rhythm of walking can push urine from their bladders before they realize it's happened.
This is a problem that everyone thinks they can empathize with, but they can't really. Unless a woman carries low, she has no idea just how bad bladder pressure can get. It sometimes feels it will never end, and it won't until the pregnancy is over.
13 Gender Predictions
Be prepared for every random stranger to believe they know what gender the baby is based on how mom carries. It's always been believed that women who carry low are having boys, and even when mom knows for sure she's having a girl, the comments won't particularly stop.
The way a mom carries is largely due to the position and size of the baby, not the gender. There is no evidence to show that boys hang lower in the womb, but mom will grow extremely tired of people telling her that's the case. When she argues that how a woman carries has nothing to do with the gender of the baby, she will be met with stories about the woman this stranger knows who had a boy after she carried low, as if that is scientific evidence.
Sonograms can tell mom what gender she is having, not a low belly.
12 Any Day Now, Right?
It's so fun when everyone assumes mom is due any minute when she's really only six months along. Just kidding, it's awful!
People will approach moms who are carrying low and make assumptions, like that they are overdue or that the baby has dropped and should be making an appearance any minute now. Even when mom explains that she is still in the second trimester, people will express concern about the position of her baby.
It's never safe to assume a woman is due because it implies she is large when she might only be a few months along. The lower position of the baby also makes people too comfortable about assuming mom is about to birth. After endless comments from people, many low-carrying moms feel like they want to snap and tell people to mind their own business. It's a perfectly acceptable response since everyone at this point should know it's not appropriate to guess about how far along a pregnant woman is.
11 Immense Pain All the Time
Guess what happens when the baby hangs a bit low in the front? We overcompensate by trying to pull them up using our lower backs. It causes an awful lot of pain for women who carry low, and most of them dread even walking five steps towards the end of the pregnancy.
Since there's no way to force the baby up further in mom's womb, women who carry low simply have to find ways to manage the lower back pain. Chiropractics and acupuncture are safe for many women during pregnancy, though it's a good idea to get the OK from a doctor or midwife first. Good posture helps, but it's extremely difficult to maintain when mom is trying to lift her belly while the baby attempts to drag her down.
Asking for a back massage every single night is reasonable when mom carries low. It is literally a pain, and it gets worse as the baby gets bigger.
10 Scary Intimacy
Okay, we technically know that a penis can't hit a baby when we are intimate while pregnant, but that fear still looms large for women who carry low. The baby is already way down there, and a low-carrying mom worries that the baby will feel intimacy in a way he was never meant to. It's enough to turn any mom off of intimacy for the remainder of the pregnancy.
Carrying low can also make intimacy difficult, position wise. By the time mom and dad figure out the logistics of intimacy, both of them may be too tired to actually do it. Carrying low means there aren't any comfortable positions for mom, and her partner will find that this discomfort extends to intimacy.
It's safe to have sex while pregnant unless the doctor advises otherwise, but many low-carrying women will find they just aren't that into it, and that's okay.
9 Big Baby Fears
The belief is that small babies are probably the ones burrowing down low in the womb, meaning that women who carry low shouldn't worry about the baby being too big. However, the immense amount of pressure that carrying low causes, combined with the fact that it makes mom look larger, often causes women to worry that they are going to give birth to a giant baby.
It's true that some women who carry low may give birth to a big baby, but many have babies who are of average size. However, it may be more difficult to get an accurate measurement if the baby rides low, causing mom's fears to multiply.
Predicting a baby's size while she is in the womb is an imprecise process, so mom doesn't need to worry about this one way or the other. However, low-carrying moms usually do.
8 Under Pressure in the Back
The bladder is not the only organ that suffers when mom is pregnant. The bowels are smashed down there as well, and in women who carry low they are compressed even more. This can lead to pain, constipation, and flatulence. Obviously none of these situations are pleasant, so it's just more added pressure for mom.
Women also worry about pooping during labor, and it's a possibility for any woman since the same muscles that help push the baby out also help mom poop. For women carrying low, it may be even more of a concern because the baby is already pressing on the bowels so hard from the positions he is in.
To relieve constipation, mom needs to drink water and get in some fiber. As far as pressure in that region, it's pretty normal for moms who carry low, but it's not comfortable. The unexpected gas is also not fun, and it tends to occur in the least convenient settings.
7 The Early Waddle
It's so cute when we watch other women waddle around while pregnant. The waddle comes when a woman reaches that point in pregnancy where her stomach prohibits her from walking like a normal person and instead makes her try to work her lower body around her protruding belly.
For most women the waddle doesn't strike until close to the end of pregnancy. For women who carry low, the waddle starts very early. Because the stomach is low to begin with, mom will find that she doesn't feel as balanced and can't move like she could before. That means she will assume the waddle walk and be stuck with it throughout the pregnancy.
Watching other women waddle is fun, but doing it ourselves isn't. Waddling adds to back pain, and it doesn't make a woman feel like she is strutting with confidence and ease.
6 The Belly as a Trap
Carrying low means making very careful decisions about where to sit and how to maneuver. When carrying low, it's possible to slide into a booth to sit at a table and not be able to stand up when it's time to leave. The baby is so low that getting into a booth is hard enough, but if he changes positions mom can end up stuck.
It's not possible to predict what situations will be complicated to navigate due to the low belly. Even sitting in chairs and leaning forward can cause mom to wedge her baby belly underneath the table. It's hard enough to manage a baby bump that is in the normal position, but one that is low means mom has to think even harder about how she sits and if she will be able to get up again.
5 Is That Labor Pain?
Carrying low is so painful that just the process of existing with a baby that far down has caused some women to think they were in labor. The reason for this is often the back pain that comes from trying to lift the belly using our lower backs.
Women should really only have to deal with labor pain when they are in labor, but many low-carrying women swear they felt something similar to it throughout their pregnancies. The discomfort they experienced caused waves of pain to wash over them in a way that felt like having contractions. Many thought they were having back labor because their lower backs were the main focus of the intense pressure and discomfort.
After calling doctors to confirm that the pain is normal and not labor, many women seriously reduce their recreational activities because anything besides just surviving hurts too much to do.
4 Those Belts Make Sense
Women who do not carry low many not understand why there is a line of products that help moms hold their bellies up while pregnant. They are like belts or harnesses that lift mom's stomach so her lower back can get a break. Why would someone pay money for those things? Ask a woman who carries low.
Women who carry low will look for any possible way to make pregnancy more comfortable so they can get some rest and not be in constant pain. Though a pregnancy support belt only does so much, it is a way for mom to help relieve some of the pressure that occurs when her stomach is further down her body than other mom's bellies.
They may not work for everyone, but there aren't many low-carrying moms out there who haven't at least tried a product that offered them the chance to feel more comfortable.
3 Forget Socks
When the belly rides low, it's best for mom to just plan on living in flip flops for the remainder of the pregnancy. Trying to lean over her stomach to get to her feet is a task best not attempted, and forget putting on socks or tying shoelaces. It's not worth the hassle.
Reaching feet is a challenge for any mom, regardless of how she carries. However, moms whose bellies are a bit higher can prop their feet up and lean over their bellies to reach their legs or feet. Women whose bellies are low can't. When they lean over, they just lean straight into belly and can't get any further than that.
It's fine to make things easy for mom, so wear flip flops or slip on shoes that don't require any effort. If it's cold outside, mom can make a partner put socks and shoes on for her. Mom is carrying the baby, so this is the least he can do.
2 Seat Belt Confusion
Where do we put the seat belt when we're pregnant? It's a confusing enough issue when mom is carrying normally, but it's even more difficult when she's carrying low. We want to be protected if we get in a car wreck, but we also want to make sure the seat belt doesn't cut into our belly or hit the baby when it contracts. What do we do?
It's best to ask a doctor what to do and what is best when driving or riding in a car, but understand that a woman who carries low may not be able to carry out the instructions as easily. Her stomach will be in the way, and some women carry so low that their bellies actually make it hard for them to sit behind a steering wheel.
1 Early Delivery Worries
One concern with carrying low is that a woman may go into labor early. A woman can carry low the entire pregnancy and make it to term, but there's also the possibility that all that pressure on mom's lower half will lead to early labor. It's something moms who carry low have to be aware of, just in case.
The good news is that women who carry low may have shorter labors because the baby is already so far down. Though having an early labor is not ideal, making it to term and then having a shorter labor is great. This is one of the few advantages that can come from bearing all that pain throughout the pregnancy.
Women who carry low need to know what signs to look for so they can seek help if labor does start early. However, they shouldn't stress about the possible negative outcomes the whole pregnancy since things can be just fine no matter how mom carries.