A - Z Challenge

Fatherhood for the second time

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*Disclaimer: I use the term “my pregnancy” to differentiate between his first and second pregnancies. It was definitely more “our pregnancy” than mine.

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My pregnancy wasn’t my partner’s first pregnancy; he had fathered a daughter from a previous relationship seven years prior to my pregnancy. This brought an extra layer of knowledge and made for an interesting pregnancy.

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He is a loving and supportive partner, especially when I was pregnant. He would accompany me to my doctor’s appointments, massage my legs and feet when they ached and even purchase deep fried crispy hot wings at 11PM.

 

Despite all this I still had the feeling that I wish he were more physically involved in my pregnancy, like how he would tell me he was with his first. I didn’t want to compare, because I wasn’t a very needy pregnant person. In fact I was very active and independent. I remember picking my step daughter from school one day. “When are you having your baby?” her teacher asked. “Tomorrow”, I replied. I like to do everything myself. That’s just me, so I suppose I didn’t give him much room to act. I wish he would have sung to my belly or been more excited. Sometimes it felt like he had been through it before and nothing new and exciting was happening so he checked out in that regard. It was as if he left me to experience pregnancy on my own.

 

On the other hand I liked that he had experienced this before. When my son kicked for the first time, I was convinced that I was dying and we had to go to the hospital ASAP. Luckily his hand was on my belly and he felt the movement too. So I just over reacted and life resumed as usual. He helped me make lots of rational and difficult decisions during my pregnancy.

 

I didn’t enjoy having to hear daily comparisons between the first pregnancy and mine. Some were good and some were bad. I know that we are two completely different women from completely different circumstances with completely different beliefs. I didn’t want to feel less than or more than. I just wanted to feel like he was supporting me fully, without comparison.

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What I do take away from my experience is the following:

  1. No two pregnancies are the same.
  2. Talk about how you feel.
  3. Enjoy every moment, good and bad.
  4. Let your partner know how you want them to be involved. They can’t meet your expectations if they don’t know them.

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I didn’t let him know how I felt about this until earlier this year. He was quite shocked, because he thought he was doing and saying the right things. I should have spoken about this while I was pregnant. The outcome would have been so different. He is a loving and dedicated father to both of his children. I am so grateful to have him and my step daughter in my life.

 

Have you gone through a similar situation?

Let me know, I’d love to hear from you.

 

Love and Blessings,

Lindsay Sign Off

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28 thoughts on “Fatherhood for the second time

  1. How often must miscommunication and misunderstandings happen in relationships when we assume something. But we don’t speak up. It happens to all of us. At least you’ve been able to talk to him about it since and you also know how strong a woman you are. He obviously adores you! Great post Lindsay.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. You will be veterans. 🙂 And you’ll know the ropes. My week’s been good thanks, very busy. And it’s flown, I can’t believe that tomorrow is Friday, the last day of school holidays here. Hope yours has been good. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I know the feeling, doing lots but not quite achieving everything we’d like to. And yes they have had a good holiday. Not sure if they’re quite ready to go back to school but then again it’ll be good to get back into more of a routine again. For me too. 🙂

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      3. Definitely. School started on Tuesday so I can relate. We have hectic sleepovers with 5 friends at a time. Lots of kids in the community and the school is down the road so everyone knows everyone. People always pop in so when school starts things go back to normal.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. I’ve only been pregnant once, and I wasn’t living with my son’s father, only visiting on weekends. He was twice divorced with one adopted and two biological children with his second wife. He was considerate enough during my pregnancy. When he volunteered that he was sorry he wasn’t so excited, but he’d already been through this twice, I replied, “Yeah, I know. That’s why I act like I’m not pregnant when I’m here. I get excited about it when I go home.”

    Needless to say, we never lived together, and although he was financially supportive, I have been a single parent since the day I got pregnant more than 34 years ago. We’re still friends, and he and our son talk. I never wished things were different. I thrive on autonomy.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You are so strong. It is terrible to feel like second place. Everything is new and you expect a certain level of excitement from your partner that you don’t get. It is very sad actually. I’m sure you raised a wonderful son.

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      1. Thanks. I think he’s pretty great. I never felt sad or cheated out of his father’s excitement because I’ve always believed each of us is entitled to feel whatever we feel, not what someone else wants us to feel. That makes someone outside of us at least partially responsible for our happiness, and that’s a definite non-starter. The most I can hope is that people I care about will be honest with me. He was. Gotta respect that. I had all the excitement and joy I needed. 🙂

        Liked by 2 people

  3. Hi Lindsay! My husband and I both had two children from two different people before we had our daughter together. I learned in those other two relationships how important communication is. I did things much differently this time and we communicate on everything. It helps so much because we never argue, we always know what the other person wants or expects, and we have a much more loving relationship this way because we both leave ourselves open for discussion always. I am glad you learned how important communication is, and know all you can do is move forward and let that be a lesson to speak up. Sometimes it is hard for us woman because we feel we need to assert our independence but it’s ok to say we need more sometimes too! xoxo

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  4. I cried when I found out I was pregnant with my daughter. They were happy and sad tears. I was beyond excited to be pregnant but I was terrified to tell hubby. I was scared of his response. He wasn’t as excited as I was. I still haven’t talked to him about my feelings, probably won’t. I know it’s unhealthy but I don’t feel it’s necessary. I’m still fighting with my own demons with feeling like our daughter will never compare to his son. It’s sounds sad and it is sad that I feel this way. But that’s been my personal experience.

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    1. I totally understand how you feel. When I told him I was pregnant he was neither happy nor sad. Just emotionless. I try to be the best mom I can be to both children, but there was a bit of a wobble between my step daughter and my son when he was born.

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      1. Exactly! Like I feel that my love for my step-son is an extremely rare and strong. Because it takes A LOT to love someone who is not yours as your own and that is a love indescribable. But my love for my daughter…that’s a human being I created. That is an inseparable bond that I cherish. It’s hard. And I do find days (shame on me) where I feel like I need to love my daughter more, perhaps it’s when I feel neglected for love from my husband and I feel like since she’s a part of me, he might not love her as much either. These are dark, evil demons that I HATE, but have not found a way to lock them out.

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      2. Sometimes I feel like I give too much of myself to my step daughter and ‘neglect’ my son. It feels like I have to work so hard to make her feel comfortable, it is a lot of pressure. If you do well you don’t hear anything, but mess up a little bit and the whole world is after you. That balance is difficult to achieve all the time. Step parenting is hard, but if we were chosen for that path and we are strong enough and capable enough to thrive in the situation we are in.

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  5. I personally haven’t gone through such a similar thing (by the way, lovely family you have), but my son and daughter in law recently did something similar, except she had a baby 10 years ago, different father, and then they recently had a son together right after Valentine’s Day. He was very proactive with the pregnancy; getting her what she craved, taking care of her, etc. She did compare a lot between the two pregnancies, mainly because they were 10 years apart she couldn’t remember some things, but remembered other things vividly. I don’t know if that bothered him; I think he was just astounded by it all with it being a totally new experience for him.

    betty
    http://viewsfrombenches.blogspot.com/

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I wonder if he felt similar or not, but I suppose men process these situations differently. Many men are non-emotional or less emotional than women. Mr is less emotional in most areas of our life so I should have expected it. I could have also been hormonal at the time. Thank you so much for your kind words.

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