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Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Birth and Personailty

I have always wondered if the trauma of my labor and delivery with Ewan has affected his personality to an extent, especially compared to my labor and delivery with Cecily and her personality. There was a thread on a birth board recently asking if anyone else noticed this and the number of comments stating that their c-section baby is incredibly independent, sensitive, emotional and tempermental was astounding.


Maybe there really is a correlation. That would explain things about me as I am also very independent, emotional, sensitive and definitely tempermental. And I was a c-section baby after my mom's traumatic labor. I had gallbladder attacks while pregnant with Ewan and coupled with my horrible birth experience and subsequent c-section, plus breastfeeding difficulties, I was very very stressed for most of my pregnancy. With Cecily, the experience was pretty much the exact opposite and for the most part, she is very easy going.


I did a brief Google search on this and didn't come up with much other than how to deal with needy children. But, from my own experience and from reading that of others, I really think there's something to this. If your pregnancy/birth experience was stressful/traumatic, there stands a good chance that that child might be a little more high strung than a child that was born of a less stressful pregnancy/birth. It makes sense because you release cortisol when you're stressed and the baby can feel and experience that too.

Or, I could be completely off with my theory :-)

Do you think there's anything to this? 

14 comments:

  1. Interesting. I don't know enough about it to say either way! I think everything our kids are exposed to can affect them in some way, so it's possible. That being said, the pregnancy is 40 weeks (or 41 if it's me or you!) and once they're out, it's much longer. In the grand scheme of things, while those 40-42 weeks can affect them, their individual personalities and the way we choose to raise them probably affects them even more.

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  2. I really do think that a c-section can affect their personality even after they're born because the mom is usually under so much more stress than a woman who has had a vaginal birth because not only is she getting used to a newborn, but she's also recovering physically from major surgery and quite possibly mentally from the loss of the birth she desired. There are numerous studies out there showing that c-section moms have a much higher incidence of post-partum depression/anxiety, which can also affect baby. The only thing I found on it was a paper in some psychology journal from the early 1990s saying that a planned c-section v. unplanned is usually less stressful on baby.

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  3. Really hadn't thought about this before. Both mine were vaginal, and neither one was particularly traumatic. But the younger one is definitely more sensitive "heart on her sleeve" while the first born is far more independent. Gonna give this more thought!

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  4. Hey you may be onto something here! First son: I was highly nervous and having panic attacks, and he was stressed w/heart rate dropping, cord around his neck, and almost no amniotic fluid and had to be taken in emergency c-section. He is a holy terror and has been since day one! I kept hearing a baby cry and scream all night in the nursery that first night and had no clue it was my son. Then here the nurses came pushing him into my room at 6am telling me to "Take this little whip-stitch!" I was so mad because I couldn't even get up yet lol! He only slept in 45 minute intervals. Now he has severe ADHD and a learning disability. Second son: Scheduled c-section. No complications. I wasn't as nervous this time. He was an angel baby, slept all night from day one and is still an absolute doll. Although his pediatrician says he is slightly autistic, I blame that on the Zoloft I took while pregnant, that was before there were any warnings on it and it was presumably "perfectly safe."

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  5. Oh my goodness! I'm so glad that you are both ok! I've gotten mixed responses on my theory. Some people think that there might be something to it, but others say that that's not the case at all. I really wish I was able to find a concrete study on it.

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  6. I had 2 c-sections and I will say this, my first labor and c-section was extremely traumatic and so was my pregnancy. My son has Asperger's Syndrome and a few other diagnosis'. My second pregnancy and c-section was much less stressful and my daughter, so far, is developing normally. Although, she is stubborn and defiant, but she is also 2!

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  7. Oh my! That definitely doesn't sound like a pleasant birth experience. My son is incredibly smart, but sometimes I think he's too smart because he's always up to something. He's also very volatile whereas my daughter is so incredibly laid back compared to him. Minus a stressful moment early in pregnancy, it was otherwise a breeze and a wonderful, empowering delivery.

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  8. I've only had one pregnancy which was incredibly difficult and his birth was very traumatic. Since birth we have considered him a high needs baby. There is nothing wrong with him physically or developmentally but he is very high strung and gets upset easily. He never slept well and it still isn't great for his age. I really think there is something there with this theory.

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  9. My second pregnancy was very calm and my daughter is very easy going.. My third pregnancy I was stressed to the max and my son is very needy and crabby at times. He gets upset very easily compared to my daughters. I think that makes sense, there is definitely something to this theory!

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  10. I had all mine vaginal, but every one is different. My older sister had one c-section, and one vaginal, and the c-section was easy going as a child. My other sister had one c-section, and 3 vaginal. The c-section seems to be fine, so I don't know.

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  11. I don't know if it's necessarily c-sections, but I do think that if you're stressed in pregnancy, it can make for a more difficult child.

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  12. Ewan is the exact same way. It's only now at the age of three that he sleeps decently. But he's still very tempermental.

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  13. I had a csection with our son and I don't know if it's related to that or not but he is very attached to me. Sometimes to the point that it's impossible for anything to get done and he cries and cried but other days he is very independent and happy go lucky. It's like living with Cybil... seriously. But I chalk it up to the fact that his father and I have very different personalities and he is a perfect mixture of both of us.

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  14. My son is very attached to his dad and is downright mean to me at times. I know he's three, but it still hurts. He's also very independent and tempermental.

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