Why do I feel this way? The cocktail of post-partum emotions

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Joe Dispenza
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Why do I feel this way? The cocktail of post-partum emotions

Last update: October 29, 2017

Giving birth to a baby for the first time involves an extremely important change for parents, who, before the situation returns to normal, will suddenly find themselves living with a cocktail of emotions in the post-partum phase.

This change, in addition to being present and tangible in the arrival of a newborn totally dependent on the parents, it also concerns an aspect that is not seen and that the mother carries within herself. We are talking about the physical and emotional process that comes with the postpartum phase.



During this period - known as perpetual - the maternal body recovers its equilibrium. Physical recovery takes about 40 days, while the return to pre-birth lifestyle and couple habits can take up to a year.

“How does it feel to be a father? It is one of the most difficult things that exist, but in return it teaches you the meaning of unconditional love "

-Nicholas Sparks-

A cocktail of emotions: hormonal imbalances and physical changes

If during the nine months of pregnancy the expectant mother already feels the hormonal changes in her body and, consequently, repercussions on her emotions, during the postpartum the situation does not change much. In this period the hormones are still altered so that the uterus can contract and the breasts begin to produce milk.

  • Estrogen and progesterone are reduced, the hormones responsible for the ovarian cycle. They will appear again after a few months or a year, when menstruation returns.
  • Levels of prolactin and oxytocin increase to contract the uterus, generating the release of milk as well as contractions that can be painful.

All indicators of the fact that the woman in the puerperium phase experiences some relevant changes in the endocrine system, which can cause intense emotional changes.



Everything changes from birth

The life of the puerpera mother begins to revolve around her baby: prolactin and oxytocin promote a state of greater attention and focus on the newborn, relativizing and obviating other stimuli from the environment that do not concern him.

As her feelings are almost entirely centered on the baby, the mother is anxious at the idea of ​​parting with him. She feels sensitive to everything that happens around him, and she may feel overwhelmed by seemingly normal situations, but which now, for her, are not.

There is also a loss of interest in sex and other previously important activities. Life now revolves around her baby's requests for affection, breastfeeding and care.

They can also be mentioned changes due to nutritional imbalance from which the mother will gradually recover, with the consequent lack of iron and in some cases of iodine. Intestinal disorders are also observed due to alterations in serotonin. Other alterations are:

  • Changes in mood
  • Lack of sleep
  • Concern
  • discomfort
  • Difficulty breastfeeding (sore nipples and pain).

All this can generate in the woman insecurity, disappointment, a sense of suffocation, irritability, lack of concentration, anguish, fear, need to cry, stress, hypersensitivity. Symptoms that sometimes turn into postpartum depression.

The role of the father during post-partum

In addition to the changes that occur in the mother, too the father may feel out of place, unable to understand how to move and what to do at all times. At the same time, she will have a hard time understanding or recognizing her partner, whom she doesn't know how to help or support.


On the other hand, it is normal for the family to want to help with the arrival of the newborn - usually the mother of the puerpera woman takes over the main control, a factor that displaces the father even more. who will tend to look for other functions to feel useful away from the couple.


Parenting is the hardest job in the world. You become the one responsible for the physical, emotional and mental development of another human being.


How to restore the balance?

It is important to know that the puerperium is a normal and passing process, necessary to adapt to a new life centered on the newborn. TOAccepting physical, social and emotional changes is critical to normalizing the process and overcome it in pairs.

The body is wise and knows how to recover balance: it will be enough to promote an environment of calm and mutual support with the partner, so that this phase develops and passes in a natural and bearable way.

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