After I gave birth, the hospital nurse ran down a checklist of things to be aware of as I went home with my baby. Don't co-sleep while I was still on painkillers, don't be afraid to put the baby in his crib and step away if things got overwhelming, and be aware of persistent weird thoughts. "Everyone has weird thoughts sometimes, but if they start to interfere with your life let your OB know." I certainly had scary thoughts post-birth, and I wanted to know about the terrifying thoughts guys had after their baby was born. After all, my partner and I were now in this together, and he looked just as scared as I was.
Look: I know it can't just be us moms. True, those of us who deliver babies have tremendous surges of hormones that can make us prone to so-called "weird thoughts," but that only explains part of it. The much larger aspect, I would suspect, that leads to nightmare-inducing, racing thoughts is the monumental change associated with becoming a parent to a brand-new human being who is entirely helpless and completely dependent on you. In some cases, it's the overwhelming love you feel for these tiny creatures. And for all you do and try to do, at the end of the day there's so much outside of your control that it's maddening.
You know what else doesn't help? Horror stories and urban legends you read on the internet. So I thought it might be useful to harness the net's powers for good (for once) and let all parents know that when it comes to fears and concerns following the birth of a baby, you're not alone.