How did you bond with your baby?

Hello mums!

We're after your stories about how you bonded with your newborn. Maybe you felt a really strong connection with your bump, or it was 'love at first sight' when he or she was born, or maybe it took you a little longer to feel that motherly connection.

How did you encourage bonding (eg skin to skin at the birth, special routines?)

If you'd like to be in the mag, please share your anecdote with me on the forum or at [email protected]



  • hi jenny,

    i didnt bond with my son until he gave me his first smile/giggle when he is about 4 months old. I think may be was the diffcult pregnancy, diffcult birth and he got reflux.



  • with jack, he was jack from 21 weeks, i always felt close, i was fiercely protective of him because he was rushed off to scbu, and i still cant remember my first cuddle with him as i was out of it, but the love was so overwhelming and completely comsuming i didnt have to think about it. i am still very protective of him,hes such a loving child.

    With lola we couldnt find out what her sex was despite many many scans, we had the easiest 'birth' she was a planned section and it all went perfectly she was alert and healthy and had a long breastfeed imeadiatly with no fuss, but something didnt click, i just went through the motions, she breastfed perfectly but she was a very needy baby and screamed constantly unless she was feeding or being rocked constantly, i used to be able to settle her if she was in nothing but a nappy and inside my clothes, it was a very bad time for me, eventually andrew went to a new job and we were alone at 4-5mnths she began to play and sat up, and i can remember watching her and jack one day and it just hit me like a ton of bricks, that was my family, my toddler and my baby and i loved her. Now she is THE happiest baby youd ever meet, nothing gets her down, she is wild and outgoing and i worship the ground she walks on, sometimes when it takes time, its oh so much better! 

  • Merlin was my first section after six normal births so I missed that being born straight into  your arms because he was whisked off to the other side of the room,I couldn't see him.I missed that moment you suddenly stop being in pain and you have a warm little bundle to hold.He was wrapped up and put where I could see him but of course you have to wait for the surgeons to finish,then I got the shakes,and you can't move straight away,so it  seemed a long time till I could actually hold him.When I told my midwife she didn't tell me I was silly(cos I probably was)She took all his clothes off except the nappy,and put him inside my hospital gown,where he spent the next day,feeding dozing,which was how we met properly.

  • i still feel tearful when i think back to my 2nd child.  he is 7 years  old tomorrow and is the only one out of my 4 that i did not bond with.  i tolerated him, but used to hope he would die in his sleep.  now i know i must of had PND but i never got any help for it.  when he was 11 months i was pregnant again, and the PND lifted. 
  • I've had 3 sections and have never been able to hold my babies as soon as they were born, with Melissa this wasn't an option because she was taken straight to SCBU after a quick glimpse and I spent all night staring at a polaroid picture the midwife took for me, she was almost 2 days old before I got my first cuddle with her.

    With Evie I was upset I had to have another section because I had an infection and was poorly but I felt like I bonded more closely with her, no-one else even held her very long for the first couple of months because I was over compensating with her because I couldn't physically look after Melissa who was 15mths old and only just walking.

    With Imogen I have found it harder because I have PND but when she smiles at me my heart melts.  She feels more precious to me because she is probably my last baby and I could have lost her when I had a placental abruption in labour.  Luckily everything turned out fine and she is 13 wks now and starting to show more of her own personality.

    All of mine have been completely different experiences but seeing them all in their daddy's arms when he thinks I can't see them is the best feeling ever!

  • Last night I felt desperately in love with my 2 year old daughter for the first real time. I have a 3 year old little boy and we bonded because immediately. Nothing ever felt out of place, I always knew how to soothe him but he was very poorly for his first year and had to have several blood tests every week from 5 weeks old. He stunned me how he put up with it and I had so much admiration for how brave he was.  I think children in general put a lot of adults to shame when you see how well they cope with their own pain.He's well and really happy now and  has loads of friends at nursery. My little girl though was an entirely different story. I knew I loved her long before she was born but she was trying to get here from 23 weeks, We were back and forwards to hospital for weeks and in delivery 3 times before they said they wouldn't try and stop her. She held on for another nearly 8 weeks then arrived naturally. I had been arranged for a full term C section so my tiny breach, black legged little princess came in the presence of 15 student nurses who dissapeared 5 minutes after she was born. Like one of the previous posts, I was given a picture to encourage me to produce milk but I couldn't look at it without breaking apart. I had only seen her legs when they wrapped her up and her nose when they quickly showed her to me and I kept wondering how it looked so big. I saw her the next day in SCBU but didn't hold her properly for nearly a month. We tried Kangaroo care but her temperature would drop too quickly and the nurses fussed her away. Her cares were often done before we could get there and our poor little boy kept being bundled off to his Grans in a rush. When she finally came home I felt like I lost my little boy for over 6 months. He wouldn't even look at me and my heart used to race when I heard her stirring after the rare times she slept because she screamed with colic day and night and he was scared  of her. I didn;t have PND but I think my husband did. He adores her now but I was haggered keeping up with everything caring/cooking/cleaning. I was holding her all the time. Noone wanted to because she screamed for me and I swear one night when I walked out the room before I wet myself she was dragging herself across the floor to get to me. We managed with maybe 2 hours shared sleep between me and hubby for a whole year before she finaly settled in the room with her brother so she could hear him breathing. I felt really guilty cause I only BF her for 2 months but I had to think of my little boy aswell (she was a constant nuzzler). She was a nightmare and I don;t think I ever had PND but I was so tired I maybe thought I was when she was new. She;s beautiful and soo happy (and naughty) now and she went in to hospital last night with suspected pneumonia (she had X-ray and it's not) but she's very poorly even though she's been allowed home, she's needing support with her breathing and antibiotics. I said to her last night. It;s taken mammy a while buy I've caught up with my feelings now. I always adored her because I look back at how hard it was and we all managed in the end. It;s just that I know for definite now that I've had all those feelings there all the time. Suppose It's a way of offloading but I think the time she spent away from us in SCBU really had an effect that I'm not sure any mum can ever get over completely or describe in words. If anyone has got to the bottom of this please can you send nice thoughts to Alice please and tell her to please start taking some drinks of her own accord otherwise she's going back in tomorrow. Take care, HelenXX
  • yes helen - i read it all,  even though my baby is crying in my arms. he wants another breastfeed, but he's not getting it. (feeding all night). 

    i hope alice takes some drinks and gets better and glad she doesn't have pneumonia.

  • I hope your little girl is better soon Helen! xx

  • Hi! I don't want to divert the thread from it's topic but just wanted to say Thanks. I felt like putting my own experience on the other night really helped me offload when I was feeling so scared about other things with Alice aswell. And Thanks for the concern for her. She's still quite unwell but she's still at home. We've spoken to the hospital today and and they've assured us that we're doing the same for her that they would and that they wouldn't be expecting to see a massive improvement for another couple of days anyway.So for the time being we're round the clock with water in feeding syringes and just praying our cheeky little munster will be picking up very soon. Thanks once again to whooever placed the original bonding post and apologies (didn't mean to hijack it) but I genuinely felt like it helped to write it all down on here.For any other parents whose little ones have these nasty winter viruses, Hang in there. It's so scary when they're tiny.2 years on and I think I've been flooded with every new mum feeling  I ever worried about missing out on in these last 3 days. Strange how someone so small pulls you right round like that??? HelenXXX

  • Hiya helen,

    thanks for you long post it was such a reasuring read, i was the other way round my poorly one i bonded with and my 2nd baby, Lola, was healthy but so demanding it was unreal, it took me a very long time to want to be with her, very recent in fact, and im sure she only learnt to move to follow me, Now i look back i realise it was just that she had bonded with me, and loved me, and i hadnt caught her up,  Now when she comes crawling super fast and wraps her chubby arms around my leg and sayes aaaah, im happy because i want her to love me like that and i never want to feel how i did, she is so special, i dont think anyone likes me as much as her, since shes arrived my son has become a daddys boy, i used to blame her but in reality ist his age, shed spend hours doing anything if i laughed, she is my crazy little angel, and although shes the hardest work ever, i adore her! And im greatfull every day for them both, i think that the hard times make the good oh so much sweeter!

    thanks again, and my thoughts are with you, i wish alice a very very speedy recovery and all the best to all of you! xxxx

  • Thank you Laura! XXX You sound a little bit like me where you know it's okay now how you feel but you always feel that fragile feeling in the background. It's so unbeleivable to step back and see how important it is to be able and allowed for many mums who can't hold their babies at first. I think so many mums must feel this guilt if they don't bond and there's so much pressure placed on bonding aswell. I'm so surprised at how many mums have told me they didn't bond and you can see that it's like they're admitting a secret they've felt like they needed to keep from the whole world. My little boy is definitely more a Daddys boy now and I used to feel quite sad and a little bit jealous if I'm honest when I saw them becoming so close when Alice was still such hard work. Now it seems to have evened out and we're all very happy but then again are we supposed to have a timescale to stick to? I think maybe (especially with more than one child) it just takes time for everyone to find their place. I know you'll understand that the sheer sleep depravation is bad enough so I can completely understand misinterpreting exhaustion with depression in some mums. I don't feel guilty anymore because I think in the beginning I forced myself to include her in conversations and to say Good girl and Mammy loves you all the time wether I actually felt it at those times or not and I really think that it quickly fell in to place that I did mean it when I realised that she was actually settling in to a lovely happy little baby. I'll be totally honest again and say there was a few times I wondered in the beginning wether she was autistic the way she would scream and I think even things like that in the beginning were terrible things to wonder. but they're things I hope I'll never tell her and I honestly find it easier to remember the nice parts now when at first I don't remember there being any. There clearly was though because we can laugh about it now. I went mad with my hubby one day because I had gone out with 2 odd trainers on and I thought it was his fault for not saying aanything but I've since been told by my 10 year old neice that it's fashionable now I must have just been ahead of everyone else. (10 years old? AAAAh! It made me feel so much better LOL) Anyway. I think I'll be in trouble if I keep posting on this bit but Alice has kept her temperature down all day and had 4 oz water from a bottle this evening. she's comfy in her own bed. She picked up for 5 at her grans and I'm hoping this isthe start of her getting better. She hasn't eaten anything but the odd bit of yoghurt and weetabix for 4 days but I'm told her appetite will follow. Hope so because I'm thinking I shouldn'y have cleared her small clothes out ready for Christmas now. Thanks everyoneXXXX 
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