Men and women are different on so many levels. Even as they beckon a new life together, their psychological differences do not suddenly reconcile. As they learn to cope with new uncertainties, men and women sometimes feel like they are on separate journeys. Here, we reveal what men and women feel during pregnancy, in the hope that men and women can reach out to each other better during this process.
How women feel during pregnancy?
From the moment a women learns she is pregnant, she is drawn into it emotionally and physically. Whether or not the pregnancy is planned, a woman has an innate desire to nurture the new life. Almost immediately, she starts contemplating her role as a mother.
The First Trimester
A woman’s hormone level soars as the embryo is kept implanted to the uterine lining. She also experiences a surge in estrogen and progesterone which could cause moodiness amongst other symptoms.
Feelings of morning sickness and body soreness become daily reminders that she has a life in her. Be it avoiding alcohol or coffee, taking up meditation or listening to Mozart music, every woman adopts her set of dos and don’ts during pregnancy as she realises that she has to care for her body differently.
A woman might not show it, but there is always a nagging fear that she could lose the baby during the first trimester. This is on top of learning to cope with physical changes and discomforts such as nausea and tiredness which could affect her performance at work.
The Second Trimester
As the pregnancy advances, she will find herself having to grapple with her changing body image as she puts on weight, experience hair loss or suffer from break outs.
By now, she would have experienced many kicks. This brings about momentarily sense of joy. But that does not spare her from roller coaster emotions that can render her helpless at time.
Being pregnant can also place a strain on the relationship. She may feel less attractive or desirable. She may also feel that her husband is insensitive towards her needs and feelings.
The Third Trimester
Feelings of elation, anxiety and fear intensify. In between bouts of excitement, a woman can feel unappreciated by her husband as she undergoes a significant transition. In fact, she may even feel that she is going through pregnancy alone.
How men feel during pregnancy?
Women are in the limelight during pregnancy. While most men are fine with all attention being on the women, they can sometimes feel left out when their significant other neglect their feelings and needs.
But men being men, they mostly keep these feelings to themselves. They will also not share their worries about how pregnancy or parenthood could affect the marriage. This is on top of coping with growing expenses and responsibilities.
Men who did not enjoy a close relationship with their fathers might question their ability to become a good father. Like women, they have their insecurities. But unlike women, they will hardly express their concerns. Not even over beer with buddies.
And that is not all. They have to learn to manage women’s hormonal upheavals and demands. Because the woman is carrying the child, the man feels that he is expected to do everything else.
For most men, connection with the new life occurs during the first ultrasound. This is the moment when the pregnancy becomes real to him. If this is the first pregnancy, chances are the men will be feeling a mix of fascination and anxiety as he watches the pregnancy unfold.
Pregnancy can be an enjoyable journey if husband and wife learn to support each other. This means sharing responsibilities and what they feel. Having the men involved in the pregnancy as much as possible helps them prepare themselves for their new role. At the end of it, the process can be a nurturing one both as individuals and a couple.
Ease into parenthood by preparing for your baby’s birth earlier. Speak with a professional consultant to find out more.