Pre-Birth Parenting: Bonding with your baby starts in the womb
A baby’s sense of safety, calmness and security doesn’t begin with the first breath of air. Thanks to fetology studies, we now know that in addition to developing physically, babies are developing mentally, emotionally and psychically during their time in the womb.
As mothers, everything we put into our body crosses the placenta and affects the baby. This is also true of emotions. Knowing that your baby is fully aware of his or her surroundings and the people who are his or her parents, it is only reasonable that the baby also thrives when there is a loving interaction and socialization with the family to whom he or she will be born.
That is why, as parents, we should do all we can to be sure that the baby’s emotional development, sense of well-being and esteem as a loved being, are being fostered through caring and consistent pre-birth parenting.
When we offer our pre-born baby love, we reinforce the positive feelings of security. A baby who feels welcomed and wanted is more attached and secure in his acceptance of himself and the rest of the world. The more love he or she gets, the more they are capable of giving. Attachment is as central and essential to the developing baby as are eating and breastfeeding.
By taking the precious time dedicated to tune in to this little person who has become part of your life, you don’t only lay the foundation for a relationship that will last for the rest of your lives. This close bond can be very real when it is time to connect with your baby during birthing, as the soothing thoughts and emotions have a bearing on the way in which you bring your baby into the world. When the three of you connect in attitude as a family prior to the birth, as parents you already accept the responsibility for planning and directing your birth. You are committed to ensure the safety and comfort of your baby during his or her journey into the world.
When there is a respect for the life carried in the womb, pregnancy seems to be easier and more enjoyable, as well as birthing. Overall health, weight gain and increased socialization are just a few of the numerous benefits for babies who experienced pre-birth parenting. Being brought into the world gently and at their own pace, the babies carry this experience with them, resulting in being exceptionally relaxed, content and happy, feed better and sleep better.
Here are a few simple ways for you to intentionally create interaction, love and play for your baby to thrive:
- Learn relaxation techniques and practice them daily- baby needs peace too;
- Play with your baby physically- sway, pat, rub and stroke gently;
- Use guided imagery and visualization;
- Carry on conversation with your baby;
- While relaxing in a tub, massage your belly with lukewarm water while singing or talking to your baby;
- Play soothing music- soft piano, guitar, sounds of the ocean and nature;
- Have family and friends greet and interact with your baby;
- Put yourself in the baby’s frame of reference- how wholesome are the surrounding noise, voices, attitudes, emotions, food, temperature, air, odors?
About the author
Inbal Sigler is the founder of Isis HypnoBirthing & Yoga. She is also a certified HypnoBirthing trainer, Yoga teacher specialized in pre- and postnatal, and a doula. Isis Hypnobirthing & Yoga is a comprehensive pregnancy and childbirth preparation course combining techniques of Hypnobirthing, Theta Healing, Chinese Medicine and Yoga. Inbal supports women on the amazing journey to motherhood in fertility, pregnancy support and birth support.