When you don't bond with your baby

When you have a baby everyone expects you to be ecstatically happy and full of unconditional love for your baby. So when you don't feel like that it can lead to you feeling ashamed and guilty. Failing to bond with your baby is seen as somewhat of a taboo subject but is more common than imagined.

Feelings can include:

  • Feeling detached from the whole situation.
  • Having no feelings for your baby.
  • Wishing you had not had the baby.

If you experience a problem bonding with your baby it is very important that you realise it is not your fault, you are not a bad mum and you must not feel ashamed.

What you do need to do is:

  • Talk to someone; it could be your partner, family, friend, GP, health visitor or midwife.
  • Or contact the Association for Postnatal Depression : 020 7386 0868.
  • Try to get some sleep.
  • Spend time with your baby.
  • Limit visitors.
  • Don't try to do too much or expect too much of yourself, you don't have to be super woman.

Reasons why you may feel this way:

  • Postnatal depression.
  • Fear of the responsibility or lack of confidence.
  • Feeling overwhelmed with the lifestyle changes a new baby can bring.
  • If you have other children feeling guilty about having another baby.
  • Or resenting the time away from your other children.
  • A difficult pregnancy and/or birth.
  • Trauma after the birth such as your baby needing medical treatment.
  • A recent bereavement.
  • A separation.
  • Lack of sleep.

Remember the feelings of love can sometimes just take a bit longer to come. However it is important that the issue isn't just ignored.