After my last post about freaking out I’ve received many messages from mothers and soon to be mothers talking about feeling lonely during their pregnancy despite having a good support system. And for some others it was worst because they had little to no support.
While this is not my experience, i did feel lonely at times despite having my tribe. Pregnancy being such an intense experience, I can’t imagine how hard it must have been for those women.
Loneliness in pregnancy is due to many reasons:
– at risk pregnancy
– absence of a partner
– No support system
– being far away from your people
– depression and/or psychological state
– Financial worries
– changes in your body and the experience itself
And im sure many more other reasons that I have not thought of.
Most women get sick during pregnancy, at least the first 4 months. What is so affectionately called “morning sickness”, doesnt only happen in the morning. Its all day sickness with multiple stages where you go through some symptoms that have you question your entire existence!
While for some people these symptoms are mild and come and go, or last just couple of months. For others they are bad and last the entire pregnancy. Feeling sick is simply lonely. No one can understand how you are feeling, how uncomfortable you are in your own body. You might feel grossed about constantly vomiting and being nauseous. You dont want to get out of the house because u dont want to get sick in a public place. All this is heavy mentally and you just want to be alone.
If on top of that you have an at risk pregnancy, you will be consistently worrying about that human you’re carrying, sometimes you will even go back down memory lane to find what you could have done wrong to have an at risk pregnancy. You will be extra careful with everything, a lot of people will not understand you. Again, because these thoughts and feelings are only experienced by you – the pregnant woman- you should not expect anyone to understand what you are going through. This can be agonizing.
Now, while being sick you might still have a partner, friends and family giving you some emotional support. But some people just dont have any kind of support, and I can only imagine how bad this could be. One of my readers was living alone, and the baby’s father did not want to do anything to do with her since she got pregnant.
She decided to keep the baby but told me she felt so lonely being sick by herself and unable to share the experience with someone physically close. Only one friend stayed by her side, the others disapproved of her decision to keep and raise her baby alone. So they progressively disappeared during the pregnancy and were nowhere to be found once the child was born.
Also, all mothers/mothers-to-be I’ve talked to have been worrying about the cost of raising a child, being able to provide for this child, unpaid maternity leave, not having someone to fall back on, or thinking their savings might not be enough, ect…
Finally, other mothers have problems with their body changing. Gaining weight is expected when pregnant. However, when a lot of women already have a bad relationship with their weight and physical appearance its not easy. Sometimes, your face get swollen, your nose becomes huge, the weight goes all over your body, you dont feel pretty, you avoid everybody because people just dont know how to keep their mouth shut and are rude. I for example have not gained a lot of weight and definitely have a good relationship with my body. However, my housekeeper told me my face was huge! : “woy! Gad lajè figi madan Kal!”. This unsolicited comment hurt me! So i cant imagine for someone who is already struggling with their weight and appearance.
When you add all these up, they consist of a big Mental load and can put you in a very bad psychological state. On top of it if the mother was already experiencing psychological issues, it can be very hard on her mentally. Women can literally get depress due to pregnancy, or pregnancy can make their depression worst. They feel as if no one really can understand what’s going on in your mind and your fears.
So, with or without a support system pregnancy is pretty much a lonely experience because everything is going on within the pregnant woman’s body! For those who have a support system, make the best out of it, but know they might not understand everything you are going through. For the ones with no support system, i’ll suggest finding a community of pregnant women online or on pregnancy apps (I have a couple of pregnancy buddies on IG living in different part of the world!)
But the most important is for you to do what feels best for you and your baby! Pregnancy is beautiful but its also hard. You got this mama, you got all you need to be an amazing mom within you! Believe in yourself!
Anpil Lanmou pou nou!