pregnancy

Bec Judd has four kids, but says she never felt 'maternal'.

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Pregnant women of all ages worry about whether the feelings they harbour for their unborn children are ‘enough’.

We all fret that whatever we’re feeling isn’t ‘right’. What if we’re not the woman who was always cuddling our friends babies and sniffing their little fuzzy heads? What if you’ve never even held a baby before?

Does that mean you’re going to be a crappy mum?

Rebecca Judd is that person. And now she has four kids under five.

Listen to Hello Bump podcast host Rebecca Judd tell her story in this snippet. Article continues after podcast.

The mother-of-four tells listeners on the Hello Bump podcast this week that she struggled to feel maternal during her first pregnancy with son Oscar, who is now five.

“When I was pregnant with Oscar I thought, ‘What am I going to do with this baby?'” She said.

“How weird is that? The person who is the least maternal in the world ends up with four bloody kids.”

Judd went on to assure listeners she felt maternal after the birth but never quite got there during pregnancy.

A post shared by Rebecca Judd (@becjudd) on

It may sound like an odd admission but only feeling maternal after the birth is a common experience.

Dr Joseph Sgroi joined the podcast hosts to explain how maternal feelings can be brought about following pregnancy.

“During the whole process of labour, you secrete a hormone from the brain called Oxytocin, and that’s also secreted when you’re breastfeeding as well,” he said.

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“This is a wonderful bonding type hormone that as it slowly increases, those instincts tend to kick in.”

A post shared by Rebecca Judd (@becjudd) on

Dr Sgroi also spoke about how up to 80 per cent of women will experience feelings of sadness after the birth.

He stressed that mothers who feel this way should feel comfortable in telling others how their feeling in order to gain help.

Many Australian states have child health centres that provide young parents with the tools they need to better care for their children. Hospital staff or medical professionals involved in your care may be able to point you towards the relevant service.

Alternatively, some mothers-to-be seek out online forums or pregnancy groups on social media to share their feelings.

It’s important to always keep in mind that every pregnancy is different and that maternal instincts are as individual as you are.

Want more advice? Listen to the latest episode of our pregnancy podcast Hello Bump.

Have you listened to Mamamia’s Hello, Bump podcast? Like to have your opinion heard? So do we and we love to hear yours.
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