A baby holding a parents finger

New Mum Anxiety | Am I An Overprotective Parent?

New Mum anxiety is one of those things that can creep up on you, and then suddenly rear it’s ugly head when you least expect it, and it usually happens at the worst possible time too.

You’ve kept your cool so far with everyone that has been desperate to see your newborn, but when the 964123 person takes your baby out of your arms and starts walking around the house with them, you just want to scream. New Mum anxiety sucks, but it’s something that we all experience.

That feeling of wanting to protect our tiny new babies from the world can sometimes be overwhelming.

I think every parent is protective of their children, but is there a point where it becomes too much, or is it just a case of other people making us feel like we’re doing it wrong?

New Mum anxiety and becoming increasingly more protective

This is something I’ve been thinking a lot about lately, due to becoming increasingly more protective of my son, the older he gets. He is now 9 months old and I don’t like to be away from him for any length of time.

When I’m at work, or away from him for whatever reason, I’m always wondering what he’s up to and if he’s ok. I have to fight the urge to text or call the person he’s with to see if he’s ok, to see if he’s had a nap or to see if he’s had his breakfast.

Can I hold him?

I’ve never liked other people holding him, especially people that I don’t see that often. I’m always sitting there watching just waiting to take him back. I don’t like other people doing the things for him that I should be, and want to be doing. I want to be the one to change his nappy, bath him, feed him etc, because I feel like, as a mother, it’s my job to care for him.

New Mum anxiety and going back to work

The feelings have become a lot worse since I went back to work. I now have to spend 5 hours a day, 4 days a week away from my son, and I hate it. Everything in me is telling me I should be at home with him, I should be feeding him, playing with him, taking him out to baby groups or on walks, and it hurts me that I can’t do those things.

He gets to spend those 4 days a week at home with his Daddy, which I’m happy and grateful for and I’m glad he has one parent who is able to stay at home – I’d just prefer it if it was me.

Being at home

Being away from Cupar for those days I’m at work has also meant that the days I’m at home are the days that I get to spend time with him and bond with him. I want our time together to be mummy and son time, without the interruptions of visitors or appointments. The time I have at home is now so precious that I don’t want to waste it.

Precious moments

I don’t want to become the ‘overprotective’ mother that doesn’t want to let her child out of her sight and wraps him up in cotton wool, but I also don’t want to waste time doing other things when I could be with my boy.

I want to see his first steps and hear his first words, I want to teach him how to read and how to write, I want to play with him and take him out for adventures. I want to do everything and not miss out on any of those precious moments.

Am I overprotective, or is it just new Mum anxiety?

Does this make me overprotective? The fact that I’ll watch you like a hawk when you’re holding my baby and wish you’d give him back? The fact that I don’t want anyone to do any of the ‘parenting’ things with him because that’s my job? The fact that I don’t want anyone to babysit so me and Aeron can have ‘time to ourselves’ because I don’t actually want to go out without him?

Maybe yes, but I also believe that it’s a natural part of being a mother.

A Mum and baby holding hands

The ups and downs of new Mum anxiety

I was the one that went through a very tough and emotional 9 months where I had health problems and suffered from anxiety while I was pregnant. I was the one that went through a very traumatic and painful birth. I was the one that breastfed on demand day and night, fighting back the tears at 4 am because I was so exhausted and felt like my nipples were going to fall off.

I was the one that suffered through a painful and stressful recovery from the birth. I was the one that cared for him through 3 colds and a sickness bug while suffering myself. So why shouldn’t I be the one that gets to enjoy him, make him laugh, take him out, cuddle up on the sofa with him.

A mother’s love

I’m his mother, and to me, a baby needs to be with it’s mother first and foremost. I’m not saying I don’t let people hold him or spend time with him, because I do. I just want to be the one that says it’s ok to take my baby away from me for a cuddle.

I want to be the one that he comes to when he cries. I want to be the one who feeds him new foods. I want to be the one to take him to places for the first time, like the beach or to see Santa. I want to enjoy every little thing with my baby that I’ve dreamt of doing for years.

It’s ok to be protective

It’s ok to be a little bit overprotective. It’s our mother’s instinct to want to protect our children and keep them close to us, especially when they’re so little and we’re still trying to establish a bond and a routine, but other people need to understand that too.

If someone has held them for a little bit too long, don’t be afraid to ask for them back. If someone doesn’t do things the way you want them to be done, don’t be afraid to say something. Stick up for yourself and your children.

Don’t be afraid

Give other people time with them, but don’t be afraid to set a few boundaries. Being a parent is the most amazing feeling in the world, don’t be afraid to be a little bit selfish. You deserve it!

Have you suffered from new Mum anxiety? Or did you feel like you were too overprotective with your newborn? Let me know how you coped with it below.

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