Being "Motherly"

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  1. Hi everyone.

    I am not pregnant at the moment but my boyfriend and I have been talking marriage, and then of course shortly after that we would like to start a family. Here is my issue.

    I have never been the "motherly" type. I love babies and children don't get me wrong, I think they are wonderful and I would love to have one one day but to be honest I am afraid of babies. They are just so fragile, and tiny. I've never been the one to ask "can i hold the baby" I usually shy away. I am an only child, and grew up being the youngest cousin on both sides, so when I was growing up there were never really any babies around. I get grossed out easily - so the thought of being thrown up on and dirty diapers freak me out.

    I'm just afraid if I have a baby these things wont change. What if I don't develop that "motherly instinct". As i'm getting older and moving on my life this is something that i am starting to worry about.
  2. I was exactly the same. I met DH when I was 25 and he's always known I didn't want children. He did but, apparently, I was worth the sacrifice!

    I didn't change my mind until I was 38 and we're now expecting our second.

    You might change your mind. You might not. But it's your decision at the end of the day. Don't feel pressured to feel motherly just because it seems like the right thing to do.
  3. Thank you for your reply.

    I do want children, don't get me wrong. I just find I am not as "hands on" like most of my girlfriends. They see a baby and they want to hold it where as I don't. I am wondering if this will change when I have a child of my own.
  4. If you don't feel it then you don't feel it and there's nothing more to it than that. I can't tell you how many times I have refused to hold my friends' children when they were babies - it was always a standing joke! That said, there's nothing I wouldn't do for DS and I can't see that that will change for #2. However, it took me many, many years to want children so maybe you have to wait for that feeling? I don't know - I can only tell you how I was.
  5. It totally changes when you have your own--it is just different. I have never been into babies or children, never babysat, knew very little about kids or babies in general. I had my son when I was 36, and like many people say, it just comes naturally. Now I know far more about babies and children than I ever did. Each stage and age you go through, you learn new things and take interest in new things. And I actually find other children interesting now--I really was not into children at all before having one.
  6. I feel the same way. I met DH when I was 24 and at that time, I never wanted to get married or have children...boy how things change. :lol: Your needs and wants may change or they may not. I just didn't think about it so much and let things happen naturally...
  7. #7 Feb 26, 2014
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2014
    Not everyone is a baby person. I am not much of a baby person -- my son is 18 months now, and I only really started to enjoy him after he turned 1. That's not to say that I didn't love him when he was really small -- he is just more fun now, and easier to relate to with each passing day.

    The baby stage, as daunting as it seems when you've never been through it, passes in a blink of an eye. After 9-12 months, your tiny little baby is suddenly up walking around, pointing at things that he wants, showing you his opinion, etc. And then you're in a new stage, and the anxieties you had about having a baby are all forgotten. Now you get to be anxious about having a screeching, picky-eating toddler instead, lol. It's all just a stage and nothing lasts forever.

    I will also say that babies, even tiny ones, are tougher than you imagine them to be. You had to be hard as nails to survive babyhood not so long ago, so human babies are hardy little things. As long as you feed them, hold them and keep them clean(ish) and warm, they are pretty much good to go.

    If you had known me when I was younger, you would never have guessed that I would have a baby and love him so much. I was (am) highly independent, sarcastic, sometimes subversive. That doesn't preclude me from enjoying my baby/child. Even non-"motherly" types can have wonderful relationships with their children.

    Having said all that, it is also OK not to want to have kids. They aren't a prerequisite for a happy life. Make the choice that will bring you the most peace.

    Honestly, I had my son because I knew I would regret NOT having him vs. having him. That was all the reason I needed. Having a baby is very hard but I would not change the decision if I had the chance to make it again.

    ETA my DH has a pathological fear of poop of any kind. He still manages to change diapers despite being deeply traumatized by them, lol. He is completely devoted to and in love with his son. Also: they eventually learn to poop and clean up after themselves without your help. The joy a child can bring is generally outweighed by their poop-related grossness. At least, that has been our experience. :P
  8. I am absolutely NOT a baby person. I don't want to hold or even really be around other people's babies. I did what I did for my own in part because I had to. But I very much enjoy them once they are a little older. I definitely planned to have children, and getting through the infant stage was part of that. It isn't easy and it isn't fun a lot of the time, but it is necessary.

    As for "gross" things, baby poop - especially breastfed baby poop - isn't like adult poop. It doesn't even smell the same. I had no issues cleaning up even the messiest diapers. Once they hit the age where their poop changed (still toddlers) and if they got sick and had an accident? Well, then, yes, it was disgusting. But at that stage, DH handled the poop incidents and I handled the vomit incidents because he had a sensitivity to vomit and I couldn't handle "real" poop.

    There's nothing wrong with not having children if that's what you want. But don't worry about your own abilities to be a parent. Most parents either turn out to love it, or at least do what needs to be done until they love it (slightly older children).
  9. I didn't think I would be *motherly* either and I certainly had no idea of what to do with sons. But when you have your own, you'd be surprised at how many of your previous attitudes can change. Looking back on it, I enjoyed having boys and believe it was meant to be this way.

    I was also worried about being a grandmother--I didn't think I would be loving or demonstrative enough with grandkids. Now that we have 2, a boy and a girl, we are really great grandparents if I do say so myself!
  10. OP, I can totally relate. I do not have children yet, but I'm really not interested in other people's kids. On tpf or facebook, I'll ooh and ah at cute kids, and IRL I will too. But, I'm not one of those people that insists that all kids are cute, funny, entertaining, etc. I never feel the urge or desire to hold someone's kid, talk to them and entertain them. I'm sure I sound like a total B, but I just hate when people think I should want to be around their kid just because they think their kid is God's gift on earth.

    I'm sure things change as you have kids of your own. You'll tolerate things you never would from other people's kids. I think it's normal.
  11. Ill tell u wat happened to me I never liked children at all sometimes even hating them anytime a friend or family member had a baby I did not want to touch it I'm just not the baby person ... then I got pregnant and I still felt the same way but as soon as my baby came out it was just different I was in love with her because it was my baby !when its your kid its different. My kids don't annoy me or disgust me I love them but other peoples kids do I still don't like other peoples kids but I love my own and that motherly thing just came about naturally out of no where ,maybe u too?
  12. I really dislike when someone asks me "do you want to hold him/her?" I do you say "no?" :lol: Just one of my pet peeves because now you feel obligated to...

  13. I totally agree!! Then they give you an almost expectant look like "Here, take him/her" and it's so awkward...especially if the baby starts crying soon after.

    I get what you're saying OP. I've been married a while and would like to have kids one day too, but as of right now I'm by no means 'motherly' and have even had a few catty girls make snarky remarks on how I'd be as a mother. I've just got a feeling inside that when we have our own little ones, the things that were gross before won't be, and we'll be just fine as mothers. Not everyone is born overly motherly, perhaps we just grow into it. :smile:
  14. ...also wanted to say, my DH was NEVER ever interested in babies. At all. Never wanted to hold them, never interested in looking at other people's baby photos, etc. Also not interested in anything "cute" like puppy or kitten pics, etc. He was good with older kids but under 3ish, not interested.

    Then our son was born. OMG. The man will see pics of his friends' babies on FB and call me over to show me how cute he/she is and then coo over the baby!!!! He will even look for cute puppy pics online and send them to me at work etc. LOL. He is suddenly very interested in all my friends' baby stories and will tag along to meet newborns, hold them, etc.

    I cannot tell you how NOT like him this seems to me, lol. He is quite a serious, masculine type, so it's funny to see him melting over baby pics. But there is sometimes a switch that flips in your brain, for sure, once you have a little one of your own.
  15. Even worse is when people ask to hold your baby .....then get angry when you pull out the saintizer ...I hate people touching my kids