Pregnancy: loving someone you don't know yet

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Joe Dispenza

Pregnancy: loving someone you don't know yet

Written and verified by the psychologist GetPersonalGrowth.

Last update: 15 November 2021

Pregnancy: nine months during which an umbilical cord unites two hearts, two worlds, into one. A wonderful and, at the same time, little-known thing happens: believe it or not, our emotions can cross the protective barrier of the placenta and caress our child.

It is curious how, during pregnancy, families take care to buy cradles and clothes and to check that the mother maintains a correct diet; but what if the mother suffers from stress? According to many scholars, we usually do not concern ourselves with the emotional sphere of the mother, which affects the development of the fetus.

Pregnancy is mystery and hope: it implies loving someone whose face we still don't know. It's imagining his laugh and his hair color, as we caress his shape through his mother's skin, already transmitting our sincere affection to him.

Vivette Glover is a specialist in perinatal psychobiology from Imperial College London, to be exact she is a pioneer of "Emotional Education from the Maternal Womb", a branch of great interest and importance that we wish to share with you.

The importance of our emotions during pregnancy

Until recently it was believed that the emotional world of the mother did not affect the development of the fetus. That's wrong: research such as those published in the journal “New Parents Support” tells us that that "magical intrauterine shell" is very receptive to emotions, especially during the fourth month.

The media, society and the family are used to extol the beauty of pregnancies. However, in reality, rarely are we taught the importance of being able to establish a bodily and emotional connection with the fetus, in a context where emotions influence their development.

When emotions go beyond the placenta

Vivette Glover herself, together with Gestalt therapy specialists, highlights the importance of caring for the mother as a whole. Ultrasounds and blood tests are not enough, it is also necessary to take care of her emotional state.

  • Dr. Glover carried out a study of 14000 pregnant women, in which their level of anxiety and stress was measured. They were then followed over the next 5 years, to also see how the children grew and matured.
  • It turned out that if the mothers suffered from a high level of stress, the children were twice as likely to be diagnosed with hyperactivity.
  • When the mother is in a stressful situation, the hypothalamus releases a hormone called CRH, which in turn causes the adrenal glands to secrete cortisol.
  • The placenta functions as a filter and cortisol, detected as "toxic", usually does not pass that barrier. Well, if the levels of the CRH hormone are very high, ends up crossing the placenta, directly affecting the fetus and putting him "on alert". It is important to take this into account.

The emotional education of children does not begin when they come into the world, but in the womb.

  • Reformulation of some concepts: for sure you have heard more than once "the important thing is the child, it is necessary to make every sacrifice". The baby is important, but it is also necessary to take care of the “covering”, especially that heart that gives it life: the mother.
    • Each mother experiences pregnancy in her own way: there are women who did not expect to become pregnant, others who face pregnancy after having suffered some miscarriage in the past. It is necessary to consider each case, to be aware of our particular reality and to face it with strength and a lot of support.
    • Slow down, prioritize yourself, surround yourself with positive stimuli: change the pace of your days and focus on the present, strengthening the union with your partner, giving you pleasant moments, filling you with hope and dealing with changes in your body normally.
    • Try New Therapies: Many emotional education courses are given during pregnancy these days. Similarly, practice mindfulness, yoga or massaging the belly while listening to music in moments of calm are activities that can offer benefits to mothers and fetuses.
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