The Second Time Around



I’ve Got It All Under Control

Well, now that you’re a pro at this, you probably figure the second pregnancy will be a snap. You are correct in some assumptions, but you may be in for a few surprises with the next baby. Actually, depending upon how the first one went, you may or may not enter your second pregnancy with excitement versus anxiety. If the first pregnancy and labor and delivery were uneventful and smooth, then this pregnancy will probably feel relaxed and easy. However, if the first pregnancy was anything but smooth, then you may have some concerns with this one.

Ah, But This One Is Different!


Second pregnancies (and all subsequent) are different from the first, especially if there are very young children in the home. You may feel more tired than with the first baby, compounded often by caring for a toddler at the same time. Signs of pregnancy come much faster with the second and subsequent pregnancies. Your baby bump will likely show much sooner as your uterus stretches and expands earlier to accommodate the new baby. You will also feel fetal movement earlier, too. Most symptoms are less intense with the second pregnancy, but that is not carved in stone. Braxton-Hicks contractions may start earlier and be stronger with the second pregnancy. Don’t panic, trust your body because it really does know what it is doing. If things feel over-the-top, then check in with the doctor.

You’ve Got The Tools To Handle The Problems

If there was a medical problem with the first pregnancy, such as gestational diabetes or preeclampsia, the odds of it showing up again in the next pregnancy are higher. However, you learned a great deal with the first pregnancy and have the tools to manage the situation should it arise again. If you did not have preeclampsia the first time, then the risk is quite low that you may experience it with the second pregnancy. The risk does increase if there is a long time between pregnancies, or if there has been a change in partners between pregnancies.

Feeling Guilty

Emotionally, you may find yourself feeling guilty because you aren’t spending the amount of mental and emotional energy on your pregnancy as you did with your first. Caring for other children, you may feel detached or distant from this pregnancy. Your partner may not even seem to be as excited and involved with the second as the first. This is a very normal thing and is in no way an indication of your love for your new baby.

Dealing With Emotions

One way to deal with some of the emotional energy you may be feeling is to join a prenatal class. This may help you connect and attach as you are more open to possibilities concerning labor and delivery than you were the first time through. Labor isn’t dependable, you don’t know how things will go until you get there, so attending another prenatal series can answer some questions as well as provide some quality time for both you and your partner to bond with the new baby.

Don’t worry about having enough love for your next baby. This baby is different from the first one, bringing his or her own joys and blessings. You will have all you need to give because there really is no end to the depth of a mother’s love for her children. Rest and enjoy.