Baby kicks don’t feel like butterflies. They feel like something crawled across your skin quickly but from the inside.
Stuff stays with your body afterwards. I developed allergies after I had my second child, and my feet definitely got bigger. Hormones are no joke.
No one ever told me about the ‘third delivery,’ aka your first poop.
The first delivery is the baby, second is the placenta, and the third is the poop. I was struggling for so long to poop.
That no matter how much you planned and wanted your baby, postpartum depression can happen to you and it is very, very real.
It is not something you can control. Hormones are liars. Partners of new moms, please pay close attention. Get help. Do not try to tough it out.
I wish someone had warned me about muscle cramps.
I had to learn a new way to pop my ankles because every night I would pop them and get massive charley horses in my legs that my fiancé had to massage out.
You do not have to enjoy EVERY minute of parenthood. It’s ok to have bad days and days when you think your kids are jerks. You’re not f**king this up – it’s just THAT hard.
You’re going to need to pee ALL the time. And only a drop will come out. Then you need to pee again 15 mins later. The most annoying time is during the night when you should be sleeping, but instead you’re just getting up to pee every few hours.
Each pregnancy is different, even with the same person.
I have three kids. The first pregnancy was very typical and followed the normal timeline. The second pregnancy was awful. I was miserable and sick the entire time. The third pregnancy was easy peasy and I finally understood why some women liked being pregnant.
You stop being able to sleep way before the baby gets here.
Everyone loves to tell me to ‘sleep now while I can’ but pregnancy leads to unexplained insomnia and I’m a total wreck already.
Your body does not magically go back to normal once the baby is out. You have weeks of healing.
You either had your vagina rip or your stomach cut open, your boobs are still on baby mode, and you have a whole new set of problems now. Pooping will be terrifying and depression risks are higher.
During labor, the ‘water breaking’ is not one rush of liquid. It’s continuous and can occur for several hours.
It’s horrendous and messy. It feels like peeing but you have zero control over anything and if you tense up then everything is much more painful and weird feeling.
Your hormones are wild, literally making anything and everything that happens to your body a pregnancy symptom. Bloody nose? Pregnancy. Hands dry? Pregnancy. Itchy skin? Pregnancy.
My boobs hurt so bad. I hit one in my sleep and woke up in excruciating pain. I knew they would get bigger, but the pain was a surprise.
For some people, labor doesn’t start with water breaking and 30 minutes later there’s a baby. My water broke and 29 hours later the baby decided to show up.
Pregnancy brain is REAL. It’s not a joke. It’s not exaggerated.
When you start forgetting, misplacing, and outright losing things, you can start feeling like you’re also losing your mind.
Miscarriage is ridiculously common.
I say this as someone currently carrying a dead baby waiting for the NHS to give me a surgical removal.
That everyone has an opinion on what you do whilst pregnant and how you want to raise your child.
That cravings aren’t just food. I craved dirt, particularly beach sand. The smell of the beach was excruciating, I just wanted to shovel handfuls into my mouth. I never ate dirt or sand and the craving went away when baby was born.
A friend of a friend told me she craved freshly poured asphalt so in a way I’m glad my craving was just dirt.
How I’d get loads of random skin changes.
Skin tags, so many skin tags!
Moles growing into skin tags then dropping off, like WTF body
Sandpaper dry skin, which I still get from time to time, just this one patch on the back of my right hand
My facial skin changing from t-zone oily to t-zone flaky and never going back
My psoriasis on my scalp going away, this did come back but not as bad
Hair – so you stop shedding hair whilst pregnant and you get really thick lovely hair. A few weeks after birth you start to lose all that extra hair. Literally handfuls will come out in the shower and it’s really freaky
Hair loss! After I had my kid I lost a ton of hair. I would pull fists full of hair during my showers. I thought there was something wrong with me because no one told me about this. Went to Google, totally normal and it happens to everyone. It grows back eventually and you’ll go through an awkward baby hair phase.
That not all gynecologists are competent. And if you have a feeling yours isn’t, find a new one.
Mine was very personable, did my d&c for my miscarriage before my first born, didn’t really give me any red flags until after I was pregnant again.
Long story short, he forgot (I guess?) to have me tested for gestational diabetes, and I had it. There were OBVIOUS signs that he didn’t catch, that I didn’t even know were signs until my new doctor told me. My son ended up having to be in NICU for 3 days after he was born because he couldn’t regulate his own blood sugar.
Every doctor and nurse I talked to along the way was appalled I hadn’t gotten tested. He also didn’t catch that I was anemic the whole pregnancy either.
Thank God we’re all healthy and happy now but looking back I should’ve changed doctors
If you lose 10% or more of your body weight due to nausea and vomiting, it is a BIG deal and could put you and the baby’s life in danger. If your OB acts like it isn’t, find another doctor!
written by a two time Hyperemesis Gravidarium survivor. Lost 42 lbs during one pregnancy and 35 with the other. And that was WITH constant zofran and IV’s and a PIC line and hospital bed rest.
What HG is, how to recognize the symptoms, when to call the doctor and how to advocate for yourself.
Basically HG means you get extreme nausea. If you tell a doctor you’re nauseated all the time and are vomiting excessively, they will dismiss it a common pregnancy symptoms. However, vomiting 20-30 times a day is not a normal pregnancy symptom. If you start to lose weight and can’t keep down food or liquid, you need to get help ASAP. Ask them to check for ketones in your urine – if they think you’re exagerrating, the ketones in your urine will tell them you are not.
Don’t take HG lightly and think it will pass. Your body needs food and water, and the lack of nutrients can be very dangerous. It can lead to hart problems, kidney failure and coma. HG doesn’t f**k about, before modern medicine women died from it.
The sooner you get help, the easier it is to manage. If you wait until you’re dehydrated like crazy, they will have trouble putting an IV needle in and it will take longer to recover. Also, stop eating and drinking healthy. If you’re vomiting a lot, make sure you eat/drink sugar and salt to retain more liquid. Isotonic energy drinks are your friend. You might not be able to keep it all down, but they will help you a lot.
Also, anyone with HG or wanting more information on HG, feel free to message me. I’m not a medical expert but I do have first hand experience…
Nosebleeds. Not currently pregnant, but when I was, I got nosebleeds every few days during the first and second trimesters.
Miscarriages are not spoken about enough. No-one tells you how much it’s going to hurt nor how long your hormones will take ages to go back to ‘normal’ and how much it affects your mental health.
Your body produces a hormone called relaxin that helps loosen your pelvis in preparation for birth.
Some women get waayyy too much too soon and it loosens everything to the point you lose mobility and every day all day is painful.
How hard it can be to get and stay pregnant. Everyone imagines it will happen easily and quickly and, unfortunately, it’s not the case for so many women.
And for women who’ve dealt with infertility or loss, how much anxiety you’ll have throughout the pregnancy.
From my mom: I paralyzed her from the waist down for a few hours because I decided to take a nap on her spinal cord in the third trimester. The doctor’s response was “yeah you’ll be able to move again once they wake up.” Pregnancy is pure body horror.
My first pregnancy was smooth sailing other than some bleeding in the first trimester. Went into labour and was doing great but the kid went into distress, decided to try breathing his own poop and had to be taken out the sunroof very suddenly. Hypoxic brain injury, two collapsed lungs, two weeks in the NICU, very sick baby. Nothing I could possibly have done to change that, apparently it just happens sometimes. Funny enough it gave me an IDGAF attitude for my second pregnancy because I realized I couldn’t control the outcome no matter how much I microwaved my lunch meat.
(He’s obnoxiously healthy, smart and active now and seems to have avoided the worst case scenarios. He has nothing but a speech delay to show for it at age 3.)
That current parents lie about what a joy it is to be a parent. Once you have a kid they are then willing to share how kids are a constant battle about everything. Yes they have their moments of awe and love, but the cute baby/toddler phase last 2 years, the whinging about what to wear, eat, going to bed, waking up, brushing teeth, doing homework last 18+ years with a scattering on aww moments to prevent you from going Homer Simpson on them.
You can mess with them in utero.
When I was close to the end of both of my pregnancies one of my favorite things to do was, when he would push up against my rib cage I would pound back a glass of ice water or eat a bowl of ice cream and as soon as that coldness hit my stomach he would back down. Also, my first liked to push his butt up against the front wall of my stomach pretty hard, so that there was a tiny little bump that you couldn’t see but I could feel, so I could sort of grab it and shake it around a little bit.
Currently pregnant and due to have my first kid in about a month. Wish I’d known I would end up doing everything by myself. And I wish I’d known how difficult the 3rd trimester would be without a partner to help me. Or that the baby’s father would show up at the ninth hour with a new girlfriend demanding shared custody. I’ve always been a believer of “everything happens for a reason” but it’s getting very difficult to see the good in all of this.
THAT IF YOU’RE NOT CAREFUL YOUR ORGANS CAN START PUSHING INTO, AND OUT OF, YOUR VAGINA.
It’s called a prolapse. It happens to an ALARMING number of post pregnant women, and it is completely disregarded by most idiot doctors who’ll just tell you it’s part of being a woman. It’ll probably hit you when you’re older, but if you’re unlucky like me you can have your bladder and rectum bulging into your vagina at the ripe old age of 25. Thankfully I don’t see it at the entrance (which would be a grade 3… grade 4 is when your vagina has turned inside out and dangling out of you) but I do feel like a tampon is falling out of me every moment of everyday.
If you are pregnant and reading this thread, go see a pelvic floor physiotherapist like, yesterday. And don’t listen to the doctor who will tell you to jump back into exercise 6weeks post partum. You can fast track yourself to fun prolapse issues if you dont know how to safety return to exercising. Or what exercises to avoid (I’m looking at you— sit ups and jumping jacks)
Oh, and don’t ever jump on a trampoline. Ever.
Avoid constipation, being blocked up and purple pushing your poop out can also lead to prolapse if you’re doing it too often.
And when they say don’t lift heavy things, don’t lift heavy things. If your breathing technique is out, this could push your weak vagina into collapsed vagina territory. Most women in POP groups (pelvic organ prolapse) comment how they did a certain movement and felt a “drop” and that’s when the nightmare began for them. Don’t wait for that drop.
Anyway I’m 36 weeks with my third and feeling pretty good and asymptomatic (aside from being cumbersome and huge) because I’ve been working on my pelvic floor health. It’s not entirely reversible (unless you’re a grade 1 prolapse) but further damage is preventable.
Everyone talks about pregnancy cravings…. no one tells you that the opposite can happen. During this pregnancy, my 2nd, I had aversions to most food until about 22/23 weeks. I’m 27.5 weeks now and finally starting to feel better about eating, but certainly don’t have cravings.
Nobody talks enough about how difficult breastfeeding is. You’re told it’s the “best” for the baby but then people assume it’s always a choice when it doesn’t work out. It’s not as if baby or mother automatically know how to latch and it can cause so much stress, which affects milk supply as well. There are physiological things with baby and mom that can make it difficult… and it can be extremely painful. I bled and my first even gnawed off a piece of my nipple. It was more traumatic than childbirth for me but I felt guilty about quitting. Advice to my younger self or new moms: breast is not best, FED is best. Don’t beat yourself up and switch to formula if breastfeeding is too difficult.
Having a baby CAN destroy your body for many women. Forget the “women have been doing this for generations” bulls**t, which I think can dismiss the very real toll that pregnancy/childbirth can have on a body. Many women suffer long term incontinence after birth, much of the time this can be improved with therapy but maybe never fully healed—and some women it never heals for. Your stomach will never look the same. I had a small waist and flat stomach before kids and now I have an unbelievable fat sack on my stomach and so many deep red stretch marks that haven’t faded. I gained a lot of weight despite not eating much due to bad food aversions. I’m leaking poop after giving birth due to a third degree tear and pelvic floor issues, and I’m told that there’s a high chance that future pregnancies and births will only exacerbate my issue, especially if it doesn’t improve soon. And I’m a first time mom and only 27!! WTF!! I don’t hate my new baby, but I certainly don’t know if I would say it’s “worth it,” considering my body feels ravaged and will never be the same. I basically lost 9 months of my life due to being very sick most of my pregnancy, and now will lose many more months due to a difficult recovery.
Every pregnancy is different! This means some pregnant women can work out, hike, do their normal stuff just a little slower most of their pregnancy. Then there are some women who throw up the whole time, and they are weak and tired and just standing up takes time and effort. I was the latter, expecting at the same time as another in the former and I was constantly compared and judged. “working out is healthy for you and the baby, if so and so can do it so can you!”
How being pregnant seems to make other people think they can make incredibly rude observations about your body that they’d never make otherwise!
Sorry to be the Debbie downer but knowing things can go wrong in any situation. My first child was stillborn at 41 weeks after a healthy and normal pregnancy from a umbilical cord accident. Always trust your gut, count kicks, and advocate for you and your baby’s health
I wish someone would have warned me about the constipation. Corollary: I wish someone would have warned me that “fiber supplement” does not equal “stool softener.”
Today, we’re at 26 weeks gestation.
I wish I’d heard the term ‘mother’s apron’ before I had one. Like, there’s warnings all over,”Your body’s going to change!” and some specifics on how, but everything I read and heard was reassuring me about how it would all mostly go back eventually. I’m still pretty bitter.
Lochia, it’s basically the biggest “period” ever as your body expels the leftovers from carrying a baby, and it can go on for weeks. I will never forget being told that I might pass clots as big as a tennis ball and that was normal. So gross.
Also, babies in the womb can have hiccups. Hiccups are weird enough when they’re your own, it’s bizarre to feel someone else’s.
Speaking as the husband, my wife was very annoyed when she learned later in her pregnancy the borderline miracle properties of ginger as regards morning sickness. Wished she’d known it from the git-go.
Bread causes heartburn. During the later stages I lived off boiled potatoes and fruit only
You can “do everything right” and have an “easy” pregnancy but baby is born prematurely. The kicker is you may never get a reason as to why
(Obligatory not pregnant but mom who had a baby in the NICU for over a month)
How comfortable maternity pants are. I was stubborn the first time around and didn’t want to switch over from my regular clothes. Once I had to I regretted those extra weeks of discomfort all because of vanity
it may seem obvious but you will not sleep like you used to. i’m a belly sleeper and have had the worst time sleeping since like 15 weeks. pregnancy pillow doesn’t help! currently 36 weeks organs and i’m so happy there’s a light at the end of the tunnel. this is my first and i’m debating if I want to do it again. i’m sure it’ll all be worth it when I meet the sweet babe but we’ll see!
I wish I’d known to go to a pelvic floor physical therapist sooner! Better to prevent issues than fix them later
That it’s not uncommon to have thyroid problems or lose your gallbladder or both because of hormones etc. That feeling like the bottom dropped out of you weeks after giving birth is not normal and might require therapy. That it’s not a good idea to have an OB who LOVES being pregnant and thinks it’s easy because she will have zero sympathy when you struggle. That giving birth later in life can actually kick you into early menopause. Maternal care and aftercare is s**t in the U.S.
That having a child over 40 is something like Bella in Twilight having that vampire baby. My poor body, I was sick and sore the whole time.
Not currently pregnant, but I wish I was told about the constant swelling of my ankles & feet. I swelled to the point of needing to buy shoes a size & a half bigger.
That you don’t actually have 9 months to get ready. By the time you’ve missed your first period, you’re likely already four or five weeks along.
Been pregnant before, no one explains morning sickness. There is a difference between feeling sick and you know when you feel really sick like just before you vomit you can feel it at the bottom of your neck about to projectile sick. Had that for 5 weeks straight.
Not every woman becomes a sex kitten and wants to have sex all the time. Some women literally want nothing to do with it. You’re tired, uncomfortable, and exhausted because hormones.
That you can get a horrible full-body rash. It’s a rare condition called PUPPP. PUPPP occurs in about 1 in every 200 pregnancies and 70% of sufferers give birth to boys.
I gave birth to a girl. So I was in the 0.15% of women who get this horrible, itchy, mind numbing rash that I suffered with for over two months. I couldn’t sleep, I sat half of my day in oatmeal baths. I cried A LOT. The only thing that stopped the itching for a few hours was Grandpa’s Tar Soap because it left a coating on my skin that soothed or protected it somehow.
I NEVER want to go through that again.
YOU CANT POOP GOOD.
I dunno if it’s iron in the prenatal vitamins, or hormones, or a combination. But I haven’t pooped as usual for months now. Prunes & prune juice are part of my every day diet and still won’t go back to normal.
Also: not every woman gets morning illness. Not every woman gets mad cravings 24/7. It doesn’t mean there’s something wrong.
Finally, a couple of now-babied friends tell me you really should get some exercise while you can. It will make a difference in months 7 to 9. Yet to get there but definitely working out as I go.
Not currently pregnant, but I didn’t realize just how exhausting being pregnant is.
Also if you like alcohol, there are alcohol removed drinks so you can still enjoy the tastes of wine and other cocktails! FRE is a good brand!
Let the baby stay in the nursery at the hospital overnight. LET THE BABY STAY IN THE NURSERY. These are the last nights someone will wait on you hand and foot, AND take care of the baby overnight. Call me callous if you want, but lessons were learned the next time.
Also, take maternity clothes to wear home. I took my size 6 jeans from before my pregnancy to the hospital. LOL. Thank God my maternity clothes I wore in were there…
I battled with anxiety a lot in my teens but managed to kick it through my 20s. Little did I know it would come back full force during my pregnancy. My anxiety caused severe depression for about a month in my first trimester before I realized it was NOT supposed to be like that. I was able to start on Zoloft and it made a world of difference. If you’re planning on getting pregnant/in the early stages of pregnancy, I recommend speaking to a therapist regularly. If you feel your anxiety going bonkers or sense depression coming in, talk to your OB asap!
The kicks are sooo unnerving. I never got used to them. I felt like I was in that movie Alien.
That after you give birth, the blood that comes out for weeks will stink like a dead body.
Seeing a pregnant woman makes strangers:
Want to touch her and touch her belly. Which they often do without even asking.
Makes them tell their worst pregnancy and delivery stories. If they had a hard delivery, they’ll tell instead the story of their friend who was even worse. It makes childbirth into a one-upmanship contest of horror stories, which is probably about the last thing any pregnant woman wants to hear, let alone hear it every time she’s out in public.
My wife’s currently pregnant, and in the middle of the night my great dane gets up, and licks me in the face to wake me up about two minutes before my wife wakes up feeling ill. Every time. And the dog has never done this before in the 9 years we have had her. It’s actually really helpful, but at 2 A.M. the first time it happened I was very confused.
This is mostly a 3rd trimester thing, but that when you are active and moving, it kinda rocks the baby to sleep.
But as soon as you lay down to go to sleep, baby wakes up and starts kicking and spinning.
Might not be super common (?), but I knew a lot of other mothers who complained about this, too.
Not a woman, but i wish i knew the warning signs of preeclampsia, Girlfriend was 7 months pregnant at the time, and had been complaining of generally not feeling good with a constant headache that would occasionally break for a bit, i came home from work(i work overnights) to her sleeping on the floor and i eventually got to bed but i woke up 3 hours later to hear a thud and she was having a seizure, turns out she went eclamptic, she ended up having a c section, daughter was in the nicu for a bit but both are doing great now. What really put things into how close my girlfriend was to dying was the doctors and nurses saying how few people they’ve seen go eclamptic and one of the nurses said shes only seen 3 cases in like 10 years and 2 of them died.
That a baby can wedge it’s tiny feet under your rib and break it. Oh and they don’t necessarily drop later in the pregnancy. My wolverine baby clung to my womb until the last possible second.
That your rib cage and hips literally pull apart from each other to make room for the freeloading being inside of you.
That there are WAY more symptoms than food cravings, morning sickness, and swollen feet.
There are some women that love being pregnant and there are some women that hate it. When you are pregnant you will automatically be surrounded by women who feel the opposite about it than you.
The attention. I’m an introvert and I mostly try to keep to myself at work but that’s impossible now. I was pretty small before I got pregnant and I’m now 30 lbs heavier so I’m really showing. People from other departments come and ask me how I’m doing, how far along I am, when the baby is due, what the gender is, if I’ve picked out a name, etc. It’s exhausting.
Babies absorb trauma and stress in utero, and stress during the first 8 weeks of their life has the most impact on their later wellbeing. Also, domestic abuse often starts/ gets worse during pregnancy. LEAVE THAT ABUSIVE MF FOR THE SAKE OF YOUR UNBORN BABY.