14 Things Everyone Is Scared Of Before Having Kids — And The Moment When Each One Disappears

By
Share
Ad failed to load

Hey ladies. Have I got a secret for you! Did you know that there’s a foolproof way to go through parenthood without having any ounce of fear? It’s called "NO THERE’S NOT EVERYTHING IS TERRIFYING AND I’M ALWAYS AFRAID." OK, maybe not everything, but the fact remains that are plenty of things that all moms are scared of. I would know because I am a mom, and I've been scared of...basically everything since the moment I found out I was pregnant (and to be honest, even a bit before that too).

Having kids can make you feel vulnerable in this gritty, scary world. Case in point: I was sensitive to news and current events before becoming a mom, but now I have to be really careful about how much I consume, or I’ll end up frozen with fear at the thought of my child out and about in the horrifying world where there are a zillion ways he could die or be made to feel sad at any given moment. There’s a reason that pretty, typographical images of that quote about how having parenting is like "having your heart go walking around outside your body" are floating around Pinterest. It's annoyingly true (mostly annoying because I hate admitting that any sentimental quote that often appears in flowery script on a poster is ever true). So much can happen to kids, good and bad, and it's hard to get into motherhood without some of that fear seeping into your brain and taking hold.

For me, the nerves started even before pregnancy. When my partner and I were considering kids, I started imagining all the intense scenarios that could come during pregnancy, labor, and beyond. I wanted to believe that once a (hopefully healthy) baby arrived, my fears would subside, but even I knew that it just wasn’t the case.

Ad failed to load

Thankfully, parenthood isn’t just fear but still it’s a pretty significant piece, at least for me. Join me as we consider the common things that cause us worry:

Ad failed to load

Fear: You're Not Going To Handle Pregnancy Well

GIPHY

I was terribly afraid of most things that had to do with pregnancy (especially morning sickness, of all things) before I was ever pregnant. Something about how there was no way to really know how I was going to handle it before actually doing it was so unnerving, much like those spinning rides at the state fair that you can't see from the outside.

Moment it disappeared:

When I was, oh, 30-ish weeks pregnant and realized that the light was at the end of the tunnel.

Fear: You Will Poo During Labor

I think I sat in shock for like, 20 minutes, after I learned that this was even a possibility. As if there’s not enough to concern oneself with during pregnancy, now this too?

Moment It Disappeared:

The exact second you poo during labor and realize you don't care even a little.

Fear: Everything Else About Labor

GIPHY

I totally cried during my childbirth class. As sweet and spunky as our instructor was, her lessons had me believing that I was going to lose my mind, that my head was going to spin 360 degrees around and that I’d be screaming verbal assaults at my loved ones while my body turned itself inside out (so maybe I have an overactive imagination. Still, giving birth is a scary thought).

Moment It Disappeared:

When they told me to start pushing, and I was so close to the end I could taste it (ew, not really though).

Ad failed to load

Fear: That Something Could Affect The General Health And Safety Of Your Child

Does this one really need any further discussion?

Moment it disappeared:

Hahahahahahaha. I'm guessing never.

Fear: Messing Up While Caring For Your Newborn

GIPHY

I mean, maybe I should have offered to babysit for some of my friends before having a child of my own so I knew what I was getting into.

Moment It Disappeared:

When I realized that my newborn was no longer a newborn.

Fear: You Will Lose Touch With Your Friends

I mean, I know that true friends will be there through thick and thin and all that jazz. But I was still a little nervous that I'd be too distracted and they'd be too busy living their own lives for us to stay connected.

Moment It Disappeared:

When the baby arrived and they returned my text messages

Ad failed to load

Fear: Not Knowing What Would Happen To My Body

GIPHY

I felt so vulnerable to this one that if you’d told me that one-in-10 women grow a third eye after pregnancy, I would have probably believed you (but later Googled it, just to be sure).

Moment it disappeared:

When I was able to leave the hospital by walking (very, very slowly) out the front door. Survived! Nailed it!

Fear: A Minivan Will Automatically Appear In Your Driveway, And High-Waisted Sweat Pants In Your Closet

I mean, I'm still trying to get my sweatpants situation under control, but we were able to resist buying a mini-van so one out of two isn't the worst.

Moment it disappeared:

When we had the car seat installed in a car that had no stick figure bumper stickers on it.

Fear: Motherhood Would Turn You Into A New, Unrecognizable Person

GIPHY

With so much talk out there about how motherhood changes you, I had serious concerns that I’d become a completely different person.

Moment it disappeared:

When I realized that I was still listening to '90s pop, and that I was reading celebrity gossip while nursing. Nope. Still me.

Ad failed to load

Fear: You're Going To Buy The Wrong Crib Or Bottles Or Jammies Or Pacifiers. OMG Should You Even Be Using Pacifiers?

I mean, there's a reason that it's common courtesy to offer a gift receipt with a baby shower gift. You just never know what's going to work for a little one.

Moment it disappeared:

When I thought about the millions of babies in the world who do not have access to things like electronic swings and wipe warmers, and other super-specific gear that I thought we needed. Maybe I shouldn't sweat the specifics of my privilege.

Fear: You Will Be Mom-Shamed

GIPHY

No one likes feeling judged, unless you are a flawless gymnast who just nailed your floor routine.

Moment it disappeared:

The first time I actually was mom-shamed, and I didn't even realize it until after it happened.

Fear: Breastfeeding

I was cautiously optimistic about breastfeeding, which was a good thing because my own reality turned out worse than I imagined. BUT WAIT! I don't say that to make it sound scary, I say it because there's no way to know until you try. So, if you are concerned about breastfeeding, please accept my Internet-hugs, and know that it could actually be super easy for you.

Moment it disappeared:

When the lactation consultant worked her voodoo magic and finally WE HAD LIFT-OFF. And also when I realized that formula is a thing, and my kid would be fed either way, and that's kinda the only point that matters.

Ad failed to load

Fear: You Won't Be A Good Mom

GIPHY

I’m still coming to terms with what my definition of “good” is when it comes to motherhood. To be continued, I suppose. In the meantime, I'm giving myself permission to consider motherhood an ongoing work-in-progress.

Moment it disappeared:

I will let you know.

Fear: Your Body Will Never Be The Same Again

Are you sitting down? I hate to break it to you, but this one will probably come true. The good news, however, is that just because your body is different, it doesn't mean that it's not awesome. Just the opposite, actually.

Moment it disappeared:

When it realized that I GAVE BIRTH. TO A BABY. A HUMAN BABY. My body was clearly to be respected and taken care of, not put under pressure to look a certain way.

Ad failed to load
Must Reads

10 Reasons Why I Won't Apologize For Giving My Toddler A Pacifier

My first child had no interest in a pacifier. I tried a couple times to get him to take one, but he always spat them out and gave me an incredulous, judgmental look. But my second? It was love at first suckle. And after a while, the incredulous, judg…
By Jamie Kenney

Being A Dog Parent Prepared Me For Having A Baby, Really

I’ve always wanted kids; I was never as sure about raising a puppy. Then I spent six months living with someone who brought home an eight-week-old golden retriever puppy, and I see no way to make it out of that experience claiming not to love dogs. I…
By Heather Caplan

20 Of The Most Popular Unisex Names Of All Time, That You'll Be Hearing More Of For Sure

You might think of unisex names as a fairly recent trend, but the truth is these versatile monikers have been commonly used throughout history (well, some more commonly than others). That's why the team over at Names.org recently compiled a list of t…
By Jacqueline Burt Cote

How To Have A Date Night With No Babysitter, Because It's Easier Than You Think

After having children, many couples feel that their love lives immediately go out the window, but it's so important to make your romantic life a priority so both you and your partner can be the best versions of yourselves you can be. As we all know, …
By Abi Berwager Schreier

9 Ways Baby No. 3 Made My Family Feel Complete

My husband and I decided to have another baby right after we got married and, well, we had no idea what we were getting into. I got pregnant right away, endured a high-risk pregnancy, and, before I knew it, my third baby had arrived. Together, we emb…
By Steph Montgomery

8 Stereotypes About New Dads That Are *Totally* True

Much like new mothers, new fathers have a lot on their plate. Parenting can be scary and complex, especially at first and regardless of your gender. People want to do right by their kids, after all. And since all new parents are a hot mess, dads are …
By Priscilla Blossom

8 Differences Between Being Pregnant In Your 20s Vs 30s, According To Science

Whether you're planning a pregnancy, or just thinking about your future family, it's typical to think about things like child-spacing, how many kids you want, and when to start trying to conceive. When making your pro/con list, you might also conside…
By Steph Montgomery

16 Moms Share Remedies For Their Most Intense Chocolate Cravings During Pregnancy

For better or worse, pregnancy is usually synonymous with odd cravings. Sure, there are the stereotypical combos like pickles and ice cream that plague gestating women the world over, but there are other mind-boggling combinations, too, including but…
By Candace Ganger

Putting Sunscreen On Your Kid Doesn't Have To Be A Fight — Here's How To Do It

I am almost translucent, so me and sunscreen are basically besties at this point. Even though my children are beautifully deep brown thanks to my husband's genetics, I still slather them like biscuits being buttered because I refuse to take risks wit…
By Cat Bowen

7 Things A Mom Really Means When She Says She Doesn't Want Anything On Mother's Day

Every year my family asks me what I want for Mother's Day, and every single year I tell them the same thing: Nothing. So, by now, they know that when I say "nothing" I absolutely do not mean "nothing." In fact, there are more than a few things a mom …
By Candace Ganger

19 Moms Share The Way They Cured Their Pregnancy Comfort Food Cravings

I was obnoxiously sick during the first trimester with, "lucky" for me, both of my pregnancies. For the first three months I lived on saltines, lemonade, and fresh bread. Once I was able to eat, however, all I wanted was savory and sweet comfort food…
By Dina Leygerman

8 Fascinating Facts About Babies Born In May, The Luckiest Month Of All

The height of all things fresh and springy, May is an excellent month to have a baby. It's a time of growth, graduations, and outdoor celebrations. And these fascinating facts about May babies will give you more reasons than ever to appreciate childr…
By Lindsay E. Mack

I Used To Judge Formula-Feeding Moms — Until I Became One

The other patrons in the hip Brooklyn restaurant probably couldn’t care less what I was feeding my baby, but I’ll always remember the shame I felt as I quickly mixed up his bottle of formula in front of them. I admitted to my childless friend that I …
By Katherine Martinelli

7 White Lies It’s Necessary To Tell To Keep Your Relationship Healthy

Telling lots of lies typically isn't associated with a healthy, strong, lasting relationship, and that's still certainly true, but not all lies are exactly the same. Though you've probably heard from someone at least once or twice that the lie they t…
By Lauren Schumacker

The Skinny Jeans That Saved Me Postpartum

Accepting my post-pregnancy body is hands-down one of the most difficult things I’ve ever done. It’s something that I still work on every single day. During my first pregnancy, I was 20 years old, so I managed to bounce back quickly. In fact, I dropp…
By Allison Cooper

7 Ways Your Baby Is Trying To Say They Feel Safe

In those first weeks of new motherhood, it can feel like you need an interpreter for your newborn. With their limited means of communication, figuring out what message your baby is trying to get across to you can be a challenge. With time, however, y…
By Kimmie Fink

Here's Why Dogs Are Obsessed With Babies' Poop, According To Science

Most family dogs seem to understand babies, and they're more than happy to make friends with the newest member of the pack. It's adorable... for the most part and until you go to change your little one's diaper. Suddenly, you're wondering why dogs ar…
By Lindsay E. Mack

6 Signs You're Meant To Have A Big Age Gap Between Kids

There's a five year age difference between my two children, to the day. Their age gap wasn't planned but, for a variety of reasons, works well for our family. And since I was so focused on having a second baby, I totally overlooked the signs that wou…
By Candace Ganger

Here's How To Introduce Your Pet To Your Baby & Make Everything As Calm As Possible

Our home, which we lovingly refer to as “the funny farm,” is filled with four-legged family members. We have two crazy beagles and two cat jerks, and boy are they loved and spoiled. (As they should be.) But we are now finally having a baby of our own…
By Abi Berwager Schreier

Here's The Right Birth Method For You, According To Your Zodiac Sign

If you're pregnant, you've probably given childbirth some serious thought. Some moms-to-be prepare a meticulous birth plan, while others are comfortable just going with the flow. And me? Well, I made a plan... but that plan was useless when faced wit…
By Steph Montgomery

My Dog Knew I Was Pregnant Before My Family Did

Growing up, I was 100 percent sure I'd be a mom one day. To a dog, that is. My baby plans came later. And once my husband and I were sure we wanted both a dog and a baby, we'd add to our joint dog-and-baby name list over Sunday brunch or on date nigh…
By Melissa Mills
)}