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O/T - The new "normal" for baby planning?

2Tired4Drama's picture

I'll be the first to admit that I am officially old and many societal norms I was used to have flown out the window.  So this is truly just  a confused observation more than anything else.

Sadly, SD lost a baby last winter early during her 4th month which caused her to be rushed in for emergency surgery.  She is a very high-risk pregnancy candidate, so unfortunately this loss was not unexpected.   She is now pregnant again and is about 20 weeks.  Again, a very high-risk pregnancy for BOTH her and the child.   So far all seems to be good - and God willing - this time there will be no problems. 

I am primarily disengaged from her but of course my SO is cautiously optimistic about becoming a grandpa.  The other day, he showed me a photo SD had sent  him and I was surprised to see that she has recently completed the baby's nursery.  It is painted, decorated, furnished with new baby furniture, stacks of linens, toys, etc.  She has already set up a baby registry and I saw she has more than 150 items on the list, some of which have already been purchased.  Everything from additional furniture pieces to nursing bras.   

I cannot help but feel a small sense of fear that she is planning a bit too early.   Back in the "old" days, we didn't have baby showers (or registries) until later on in the pregnancy.   

Maybe this the new norm - having everything set up so early for baby? Of course, she is certainly free to do what she wants to and is comfortable with but IMO this seems too much, too early - especially since she is at such high-risk.   Maybe this is all part of the new "Instagram" culture - where everything should be picture perfect and life is always wonderful?? 




ndc's picture

Maybe high risk includes risk of premature birth, or greater than usual chance of bedrest, so she wants to have everything ready early.  Personally, after a loss I'd be way too scared/superstitious to do much planning, but I admire her positive outlook.  Most of my friends who've been pregnant lately have had their registries complete or at least well under way by 20 weeks.  Showers I've attended lately have been in the 6th or 7th month.

2Tired4Drama's picture

I agree, NDC.  I admire her courage and positive outlook - if positive thoughts can affect positive outcomes, all the more!  

But I am like you where I would be too afraid to be so all-in at this stage.   

The uber-detailed baby registry thing is somewhat new for me, too.  Whatever happened to the days when you got someone a "cake" made of diaper packages and a couple of onesie outfits!  ha ha  Or else pitched in with others and got a stroller or car seat.  

lieutenant_dad's picture

It's possible that it's therapeutic for her - a way to remind herself that she is a mom even if she loses her babies. It's also possible that she and her DH have had more losses than you are aware of, and have been buying/planning for a long while. I'm sure people go stir crazy just waiting the 7 months to do it up the first time. Can you imagine 7 months turning into 10, 12, or 15 because of loss? 

Let's also add that women find out much earlier that they are pregnant, and much earlier (even at all) what they are having. I think women wait about the same amount of time before they "nest", it just hits sooner now because you can find out you're pregnant a week before your period is late (versus 4-8 weeks after), and the sex at 16-20 weeks (versus at birth).

She may also think that, if she dies keeping this baby, that she doesn't want to have her DH and family worrying about decorating a nursery and having everything for baby. 

I also agree with ndc that this may be done because she knows as it gets closer to delivery time, she's likely going to be on bed rest. It's going to be very difficult for her to do the things healthy pregnant women do.

I don't think this has anything to do with "Instagram" culture and everything to do with a woman who likely knows that this baby, if it and she survives, will be a miracle. Let her have her happiness before it is potentially spoiled by another loss.

2Tired4Drama's picture

You bring up some very valid points.  I most certainly wish her a healthy and happy birthing experience.   My concerns stem from wondering if there is an increased peer pressure due to the use of social media.  That makes it doubly difficult in situations like this where every life event seemingly needs to be shared with everyone. Again, as I stated, if it makes her happy it's certainly her prerogative.  

You also bring up a valid position that is very different from what old timers like me were used to.   I remember friends who didn't even have their baby furniture, gifts etc. brought to their home until after the baby was born, due to tradition/supersition/cultural issues.  It's a different time, now.  



Monkeysee's picture

I’ve had 3 pregnancies and only have 1 child. I was very nervous about suffering another loss and couldn’t bring myself to plan or prepare for the baby at all until I was well into my 6th month. Even then I took it slowly & didn’t rush to have the nursery done by a certain time or anything like that.

That said, everyone is different. A friend of mine struggled with infertility for 10 years & went in the opposite direction I did. She had the nursery done, baby shower/registry, name picked - all of it by about 6 months because she was so excited to finally be having a baby after a decade of loss and struggle. 

I’m not so sure it’s as much an Instagram thing as it is personal preference, though there are definitely those of us out there who like to post pics for likes & gratification. Not sure which camp your SD falls in but it could definitely be her way of dealing with fear & loss.

lieutenant_dad's picture

I'll likely be in the camp of "get it all set up NOW" because that's part of my personality. DH and I have already picked out names (well, a boy's name and part of a girl's name). I have spent a few years looking at nursery designs. I have my family announcement sort of planned out. Now I just need the baby.

It likely all sounds crazy, but I was married to someone who kept stringing along "maybe we will" with baby in my first marriage, and it is taking medical means with DH to try and conceive. I have been "actively planning" for a baby for a few years in some way, shape, or form, so when it happens, I'm going to jump over the moon in excitement.

It's not for the 'Gram (I don't have anything other than Facebook). It's for my own personal happiness and satisfaction. Of course I'll post pictures and likely make a big deal of it all, but it will be my first and possibly only. I don't care if it's unimportant to others because it's important to me and my family.

Rags's picture

Definately pulling the trigger early IMHO.  I do not understand people who would jeopardize their own lives and the life of their child to repeatedly enter into high risk pregnancies.  Granted, I am a man so my perspective is not that of a woman and potential mother.  But... my bride nearly died during her pregnancy with SS and for our entire marriage has been strongly cautioned by her Gyno's to avoid another pregnancy.

Periodically over the years she has broached the topic of having another child. I have always expressed to her that I would love to have another child but that was not happening until we found a Gynocologist that supported the idea and could confidently and competently outline how the risks of another pregnancy would be minimized considering her high risk pregnancy history.

So, we have not gone down that risky road.

As much of a blessing as another child would be, I would not risk my bride's life for one.

Denying her another child may make me selfish. If that is the case... so be it.  I would not risk her life for anything including a child.


2Tired4Drama's picture

And unfortunately, SD just learned the baby has a serious problem.   They have a consult with a specialist to get a more comprehensive assessment.

SD and her hubby could have opted to try surrogacy and I don't know why they didn't.  (SD can afford it.)  Knowing her medical history and its affects on both her own health and that of the baby, I can't understand why they chose to take such risks.  

It's truly heartbreaking.