No one has any illusions that pregnancy is easy. Everyone seems to know it is difficult. However, the severity of the difficulty and all the stress that comes with carrying and nurturing a baby can be very overwhelming for a lot of people. Nothing can prepare anyone for pregnancy until they get pregnant themselves and live it.
The biggest problem is that no one tells anyone what to expect and this may be because people want pregnant women to live in this world of everything being perfect and beautiful. People don’t want to shatter any illusions and let them know that they may be about to enter into one of the most difficult things they will ever do.
I wish I could say that this is only true for women who are about to embark on their first pregnancy, but that is not true. Every pregnancy is different, and a woman can have a picture-perfect first pregnancy and then be completely knocked back by their second or third pregnancy. There can be complications and different feelings that can come up with each and every pregnancy.
We are here to burst that bubble, with the intention that knowing and preparing may be a better alternative than being shocked and scared. These are not a definite, as we said every woman and pregnancy is different, but these are 20 things that most women can expect during pregnancy that they wish they would have been told before.
20 You Are Now Public Property
If a woman really enjoys her personal space before getting pregnant, she may be bothered by the fact that she is now apparently public property, and everyone thinks they have the right to come up and touch her belly. The problem is that no one even asks really, they just walk up and place their hand on a woman’s belly. Luckily, this won’t happen until you are further along, and you have a clearly designed bump.
Don’t be afraid to tell them that it is not OK, you have the right to refuse to be touched by any stranger and even family members and friends should ask first. The good news is there are loads of maternity shirts available that can do the warning for you.
19 Everyone Wants To (And Will) Share With You
People love to talk, we are all social beings and we crave human interaction. Nothing gets the conversation flowing like something that two people have in common. When you are pregnant no on tells you that everyone and their grandmother is going to want to share their experiences with you. These are normally not good experiences.
They may start to tell you about the horrible pregnancy they had, including all the horror stories and scary complications that you now realize can happen. They will also start to go into their labour stories and how they went. This can be very frightening to a first-time mom especially who has no idea what to expect when it comes to childbirth.
18 Hormones Suck!
Hormone is a word you will hear a lot throughout a pregnancy, and that may be enough for its own entry on things no one tells you before you get pregnant. What they really don’t tell you is how much they can affect your day-to-day life. Hormones can drive you crazy. They are not only at fault for a lot of the early negative side effects of pregnancy, but they can make you feel like you are going insane.
You can go from crying to screaming in two seconds flat and over the silliest things. They will make you feel like you are losing your mind and that something must be wrong with you. It is all completely normal. Unfortunately, it is likely to last for your entire pregnancy.
17 Baby Kicks Will Annoy You One Day!
One of the most anticipated moments of pregnancy is feeling your baby kick. As soon as a woman gets a positive pregnancy test she is already dreaming about those moments when she feels her sweet baby moving around inside of her. Don’t get us wrong, this is a wonderful feeling and you will relish in the sweet and gentle movements you feel.
However, there will come a day when you are tired of them. They will only get stronger as the baby grows and then they will turn into rolls, squirms and pressure. This can get quite uncomfortable and painful, and mom will be wishing they would stop. You may feel like that will never happen to you, but it will, trust us.
16 "You're So Big! Is There Only One In There?"
We’re going to go back to strangers and their obnoxious comments when you are pregnant. These comments will contain anything from pregnancy to childbirth, but there will also be other comments that will have you forcing yourself to breathe through the frustration. People will love to make comments about your size, and ask you a million times ‘is there only one in there?’
If this is your second or third pregnancy, there will be a lot of comments your way about how busy you will be. This is probably because you had no idea, right? (Note the sarcasm.). They may even ask if your child was planned or if it was an accident. Science has not revealed why people seem to think it is OK to make these kinds of comments to pregnant women but be warned that they are coming.
15 Everything Will Annoy You!
We already talked about how your hormones will make you feel like you are losing your mind, but we need another entry to really send home how true this is. Everything on this earth will seemingly annoy you at times. The air, gravity and definitely that stranger you are sure gave you a dirty look. If a leaf falls in your path, you may break down into tears. This is not to make fun, this is to say how very true this entry is.
This is where your significant other plays their part in the pregnancy, because a lot of your annoyance and frustration will be taken out on them. This is how the contribute to the pregnancy, and they (hopefully) do it with a smile on their face.
14 You Will Become Obsessed With Fruit!
I bet when you saw the title you thought I was going to let you know that all pregnant women crave a lot of fruit when they are pregnant. This may be true for a lot of pregnant women, and fruit is very good to consume when you are expecting but we are not really talking about actually eating fruit.
When you become pregnant, you download a lot of apps and look up a lot of information regarding pregnancy. Most of these will have a chart that lets you know the approximate size of your baby. This is usually used by comparing your growing baby to fruit and vegetables. You will find yourself in the grocery store holding a little pear in your hands and imagining it was your little baby.
13 You Will Crave Everything You Can’t Have
Eating is a big part of pregnancy, and it can be all a woman thinks of. There are food aversions, that feeling of not being able to eat anything out of fear of throwing it back up. Then there are food cravings. These cravings can be mild to intense and they can be for practically anything. Sometimes they are pretty weird combinations, but most of the time they are your standard items that you can get at the local grocery store.
The problem is we want to make sure we eat healthy when we are pregnant, but our cravings are normally for items that are not too healthy. It is not usually an issue to indulge every now and then in our cravings, but we need to be careful and make sure we have some healthy food in there too.
12 You Will Leak!
Something a lot of people don’t tell you when you become pregnant, but they really should is that your body is going to go through changes in preparation for breastfeeding. Whether you plan on breastfeeding or not, your body is going to want to it is just basic biology. It is not uncommon for a woman’s breasts to leak during pregnancy and this can start in the second trimester.
This is mostly due to hormonal changes that are going on, and it is completely normal. If you are one of the women who does not leak during pregnancy, don’t worry. It is not a clear indication of your body’s ability to breastfeed once baby is here.
11 You Never Realized You Disliked So Many People!
One of the most difficult things we will ever do in life, aside from giving birth, is picking a name for our baby. No one warns you about how hard it can be to think of a name that your child will carry with them for the rest of their lives. Some people are lucky, and they know the name the moment they conceive and they never waiver from that. Others are not so lucky.
When you and your partner are going through possible names, a thought will come to you that you never saw coming. You will realize that there are a lot of people that you do not like. As name ideas come through, you will remember that kid from high school you hated who shared the same name. It really is a very difficult decision.
10 Don’t Google. Just Don’t Do It!
I realize the irony of this post, as it is available online through a quick google search, however it is important advice. I wish someone had told me before I got pregnant to never Google any of my symptoms. Nothing good will ever come from it. We live in the age of technology and this means that we do have a world of information at our fingertips.
There is such a thing as too much being bad, and this is one of those instances. Google may seem to have all the answers, but they are not a doctor. It can end up scaring a mom-to-be for no reason, and she is always better off to ask her doctor if she has any concerns.
9 Pay Attention To Your Partner
When a coupe is expecting a child, a lot of the attention can get placed on the mom-to-be, and this is understandable. She is the one carrying the baby and going through all the negative side effects that come with pregnancy. This means that dad-to-be can often get forgotten, people tend to forget the role they play in all of this.
Women who have just found out they are pregnant should be reminded not to forget their partner through all of this. They often struggle themselves because they also feel like they can not contribute to the pregnancy or that there is not really anything they can do to truly help the struggling mom.
8 You Will Check The Undies!
This is something no one tells a woman when she is pregnant, and it is probably because it is considered TMI (too much information) and we generally don’t like to talk about stuff like that. Most women could never imagine a time in their life when they would become obsessed with checking their underwear every time they go to the bathroom.
This will happen when you are pregnant. Pregnancy loss is not as uncommon as some think it is, due to it still not being talked about in the open. Every time mom-to-be goes to the bathroom she will check her underwear to make sure there is no sign of blood or weird discolouration showing up.
7 Air Can Give You Heartburn
If a woman has never experienced heartburn before getting pregnant can get pretty scared when it makes its first experience. They may even think they are having a heart attack, as it is unsettling and painful. Heartburn is something that can happen as early as the first trimester, and it can be caused by just about anything. From apples to the air you breathe can seemingly give you that burning feeling in your chest.
The reason heartburn can happen so early in the pregnancy is due to hormones. The pregnancy hormones can cause your digestive system to work a lot slower than it normally would, so it is easy for the stomach acid to creep back up.
6 Take Moments To Just Enjoy
Pregnancy can seem long and never-ending and it is full of negative, painful and uncomfortable symptoms that it can be hard to enjoy it. Many women who are about to embark on this pregnancy need to be told to stop every once in a while, and just enjoy the pregnancy. Enjoy the feeling of life growing and moving around in your body.
While it may seem long, it really does go by fast. By the time you have your little baby in your arms you will wonder where the time went. You may even find yourself missing being pregnant and wishing that you had just sat down more and enjoyed bonding with your baby.
5 Spoil Yourself
What I really wish someone had told me when I got pregnant was to make sure that I spoiled myself every once in a while. From the moment those two pink lines appear, a woman’s attention will automatically shift to caring for a nurturing a growing baby, and this does not change when the baby comes, it gets worse.
When the baby gets here, all attention and energy will be on making sure the baby has what they need and that they are taken care of. Little of this attention will be placed on the new mom, and she may find it hard to do little things just for her. That is why it is important to take advantage of this when you are pregnant. Go and get that pedicure or go to the spa or do anything that you enjoy. It may be the last time for a long time.
4 Don’t Compare Yourself To Others
Here is a big one that all women should be warned about. When you become pregnant, you will have this secret power to hone in on other pregnant women. There is nothing wrong with that and it is always good to make new friends, especially friends who you can relate too. However, it is always a bad idea to compare yourself to others.
Every pregnancy is different, we can not stress this enough, and comparing yourself to other pregnant women will never end well. If you have gained more weight than another woman, that does not mean something is wrong. If you have had no morning sickness, but your friend has it doesn’t mean your pregnancy is any different.
3 If You Feel Something Is Wrong, Get Checked!
Pregnancy can be a scary time, as your body goes through so many drastic changes. You are also concerned about the health of your growing baby. If you are a first-time mom, it can be easy to panic at every little pain and ache because it is all new to you. There are a lot of women who are hesitant to get checked, because they are worried they will feel embarrassed if everything is fine.
The truth is if mom feels like something is wrong, she should always get checked. Start by calling your OB, or you labour, and delivery unit and they can advise you on whether they think you should be checked. It is always better to play it safe, and 99% of medical staff will agree with you.
2 Don’t Fret About Labour!
I am not sure I can say anything here that will ease any woman’s worry, but I am sure going to try. As your due date approaches, it is normal for anyone to get a little nervous and scared about childbirth. This does not only apply to first-time mom’s either, even second and third time moms can get a little scared to go through childbirth.
As hard as it may be, it is important to try not to fret about childbirth and this comes down to biology. A woman’s body was made to deliver babies. During labour, there may come a time when your mind gives up and your body takes over for you. Also, medical advancements have come far and there are a lot of pain relief options for you.
1 You Will Be Completely Unprepared, Just Go With It!
This one encompasses all three parts of bringing a baby into the world. When it comes to pregnancy, childbirth and having a newborn you will be completely unprepared. No amount of education and preparation can ever really prepare you for what is to come. This is because everyone’s experience is so different.
It can be scary to enter into a journey where you just don’t know what is coming and where you don’t feel like you have any control. The best way to handle this is to just go with it. Take everything day by day and let events unfold as they will. This is the best way (and probably the only way) to handle this scary but wonderful journey.