The transition of a single person or a couple to parenthood is not all about joy and happiness. Contrary to what we see in movies and cinemas, parenthood is a huge responsibility and is not always tears of joy rolling down your cheeks.
Sometimes you cry out of pain–both physically and mentally.
Parenting echoes of pain, sorrow, distraction, confusion, inability to do certain things and hopelessness too!
The belief that you are solely responsible for bringing a child to the world scares many. The onus of a child does not bode well with parents. Sometimes they are scared, sometimes they get overprotective. It is also seen that during pregnancy mothers sense threats often in their environment, which in a way affects their mental health.
Changes in the brain
As per a research report published in the Scientific American, the maternal brain undergoes several changes. “Mothers are made, not born. Virtually all female mammals, from rats to monkeys to humans, undergo fundamental behavioral changes during pregnancy and motherhood,” the report says.
“…the dramatic hormonal fluctuations that occur during pregnancy, birth and lactation may remodel the female brain, increasing the size of neurons in some regions and producing structural changes in others,” it adds.
Hormonal fluctuations, carrying a baby, and lactation induce physical changes in a woman.
During lactation your bones will lose minerals making you more prone to weakness and infections. Though things get back to normalcy after the child weans, it affects the way the kidneys and other major organs function due to the fluctuation in calcium level in the body.
The expectations from a mother are always high. A mother is expected to groom a child, groom a family and groom herself. No matter how loud they are in raising their concern, society never stops setting the bar too high for moms.
Every mother goes through this moment; while some feel it some others are so buried under societal pressures they don’t feel the jolt.
Singer and songwriter Amanda Palmer has put this in a crystal clear manner on Medium: “If I had kids would I turn into a boring, irrelevant, ignorable artist? Would I suddenly start writing songs about balance…? Would I become that annoying person who is so enthralled with their child that it’s impossible to have an intelligent conversation with them about art because they’d rather show you iPhone photos of their kid drooling out a spoonful of mashed carrots?”
Yes! Things change after motherhood because the priorities change. The social conditioning, the bodily and mental changes bring in big changes in the mother which obviously goes unnoticed and it is hardly talked about.