Will I Love My Child?

Will I Love My Child?


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After your child is just born, you may not immediately feel a rush of love and joy. That doesn’t mean you won’t love your child - it will take time.

Television and movies have really skewed what having a child is actually like. The quickness in which birth happens, the rush of emotions and love that come as part of it, and the skimming over of any of the pain do not allow for anyone to clearly understand what becoming a parent is actually like. It’s basically nothing like what they show.

A question that I’ve seen a lot of the last little while is whether or not someone will love their child after it’s born. This question comes not from prospective parents, but from brand new parents whose baby has just been born. People don’t feel a deep love for their child immediately upon birth, and they’re wondering if it will come.

Believing that you will have an immediate love for your brand new baby is a result of the media not touching on the truth of what it means to become a parent. It is not unusual or abnormal for you to not immediately feel a strong amount of love for your new baby right after it’s born. The mother has just gone through an extremely exhausting process of delivering a baby, and the father has just witnessed this all. It’s an emotional time, and can often be a blur of a moment. 

If this is your first child, you’ll find that much of the experience will be a blur - there will be a lot happening that you’ve never experienced before, and it can become overwhelming. If you have more children, you will feel more comfortable in the environment, and your emotions will hopefully be more stable.

Expecting to love your new child immediately is probably something you think will happen. For some parents, that may be the truth. However, for most parents it takes time to deeply connect with your child in a way that you do love them the way that you expect. This may be even more true for the father, as I’ve written about in the past. Fathers have less time with their child in the early stages of parenthood to connect than the mother naturally will.

Love for your child will come over the many days, weeks, and months as you learn to raise your child and get to know them.

It will not be something that happens immediately upon bringing your child home, or that happens overnight. While the realization that you love your child may come suddenly to you, your actual love for your child will happen over time. All of the moments you have with your child will help you understand and begin to feel that love deeply.

The moments of holding your baby close while it sleeps. The moments when your child opens their eyes and looks at you. A little burp (or big burp) after eating, knowing that your child is satisfied. As your child begins to smile at you. All of these and more are moments in your child’s life that will make you begin to realize how much you love and care for this baby. 

The love for the baby isn’t because of these moments though. Love for your child is a result of the countless hours that you’ve put in with the baby taking care of it, raising it, feeding or comforting them in the middle of the night, and the other countless sacrifices that you make as a parent.

For every parent, the amount of time to come to a love for their child will be different. And for each child it will be different as each and every child is unique. Don’t expect to have the same experience with each child. Your focus should be on helping in every way that you can to raise your child. The love for your child will come naturally as a result.

Don’t despair if you’ve just had a new baby and your emotions are confused. Focus on taking care of the baby, taking care of yourself, and ultimately the love for your child will come.


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