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How you feel

The first few days with your baby can be a very emotional time for you and your partner. There is a lot to learn and do. There is the excitement of getting to know your baby, but you will also be tired and your body will be recovering from labour and the birth.

Keep your baby close to you as much as you can. Your partner should also spend time holding and being close to your baby. They may feel a little left out, especially if they have to leave you and the baby in hospital and return to an empty home. They may need support and encouragement to get involved. The more you can both hold and cuddle your baby, the more confident you will all feel.

You may feel tired for the first few days, so make sure you get plenty of rest. Even just walking and moving about can seem like hard work.

For a lot of mothers, the excitement and the pleasure of the new baby far outweigh any problems. But you can begin to feel low or rather depressed, especially if you are very tired or feel you cannot look after your baby in the way you would like.

Giving birth is an emotional and tiring experience and your hormones change dramatically in the first few days. Some women get the "baby blues" and feel weepy around three to five days after giving birth (make sure you and your partner know the signs of postnatal depression). Feeling weepy can be worse if your labour was difficult, you are very tired or you have other worries.

Some women worry because they don't love their baby immediately. It is not always love at first sight. You may just need to give yourself time, but can still care for your baby and provide all the warmth and security he or she needs.


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