If you're a mama-to-be, you've probably heard about the 'rush of love' that supposedly swoops over you as soon as you catch a glimpse of your baby for the first time.
The potent mixture of oxytocin, adrenaline and a new family member means, of course, a lot of mums experience a surge of love. However, if you don't experience that feeling, that's completely normal too.
"Sometimes relationships simply take a while to grow, settle and cement," says parenting expert Rachel Fitz Desorgher, in her book Your Baby Skin To Skin, "Don’t worry. Your baby doesn’t have any of these worries and doesn’t care about your musings (she doesn’t know that you feel somewhat ambivalent right now). She will show you how to mother her. As you feed her and change her over the days and weeks, her smells and her cries and her searching eyes will gradually, bit by bit, get inside you if you just relax into what it is rather than try to wrestle it into what you think it should be.”
29 #mumtribe mums tell us about the moment they met their baby and if they experienced a 'rush of love'...
1) Vicky Griggs" I definitely felt the rush of love! The instant my baby girl was placed on my chest I knew I’d never felt love like that. I couldn’t stop looking at her and find that 6 months on I still can’t. The love only grew more fierce during a short stay in SCBU"
2) Lauren Wooding"I feel awful saying this but I didn’t have one. I was so shocked by the process of labour that I think I was just too stunned at what I’d just been through. I hadn’t slept for 48 hours either so by the time my son had arrived I was just totally exhausted! I felt it the day after though"
3) Vicky Sharpe"With my first, a little boy he was born by elective c section because he was breach. I would honestly say that it took 3-4 days for that rush of love to kick in. I was sitting at home feeding him at night and it was sudden 😍. With my daughter (emergency c section) it was instant."
4) Tiffany Denny"It took me about a day. I was in shock from the whole things and just went through the motions."
5) Chlöe Spratt"I had an amazing labour and delivery! My little boy was born in the birthing pool! I loved every minute of it and as soon as he was born I was so amazed and just in awe of the little person I had grew and just gave life to! 7 months later I still can’t believe he is all mine."
6) Sarah Henshaw"Yes. I felt a rush of love after a long and difficult labour, it was finally all worth it and I still feel the rush of love now - best feeling in the world!"
7) Rebecca Lewis"I didn't feel it with Isabelle(now 9 months). All I wanted was Dylan(4years). I just wanted cuddle him and him to be with me. It probably took a few weeks with her"
8) Louise Cooke"I knew I loved her but it didn't come as a rush. It made feel guilty for a while, but I had baby blues for a couple of weeks. 9 weeks old now and I can't imagine my life without her."
9) Carly Louise"After losing 3L of blood in theatre following an emergency c-section, I was in and out of consciousness and the only thing that, I believe, kept me going was my fixation on my little baby’s face! 💗 I was worried that I wouldn’t get the ‘rush of love’ especially as Olive was taken to special care but I can honestly say I have never had such a warm fuzzy feeling like I did in the first few days and I am besotted with her now, she’s my bestie "
10) Hannah Parmar"I didn't have one, it was more of a solid feeling and certainty we belonged together and I loved him."
11) Sam Townsend"To be honest it took me longer than I expected. Struggled with hyperemesis for the majority of the pregnancy and then the birth was pretty traumatic, in labour for 14 hours and losing 2 litres of blood.
This resulted in postnatal depression rearing its ugly head. So in all I'd say it took me a good month to properly feel connected to my baby boy. It makes me feel a terrible mother looking back but the love I have for him now is unbelievable"
12) Joanna Cunningham"I was amazed by her and loved her instantly. but I don’t know if it was a rush or more of a recognition. An ‘oh it’s you’ as I already felt so close to her after all those weeks feeling her wiggle and hiccup! That love has just grown and grown over the last five months"
13) Pippa Jones"For me it was immediate, I couldn’t take my eyes off him, I just wanted to keep him close and cuddle all day."
14) Emma Webster"I definitely did ! I cried when my little boy was born because I wanted him so much and I was overcome with emotion at how much I instantly loved him, the relief and excitement of finally meeting him and the utter delight he's ours for keeps and that he's really real! The best experience of my life, my whole heart still absolutely adores every single thing about him 15 months on"
15) Annique Appadoo" I had a rush with my little man and haven’t stopped feeling the love since. My favourite time is bath time, because he looks back at me with so much love and it makes me feel like I’m doing right by him "
16) Kay Assheton" I wouldn't say I had a "rush" with either of my boys. I didn't cry either. As soon as I saw them, I knew that I loved them unconditionally but felt more excited about getting to know them & watching them grow & learn."
17) Aimée Pegram"My rush of love was more for the godsend tea and toast afterwards! 39 hours of labour nil by mouth, on top of the six at home where I didn't eat - when that nurse brought me the cuppa... THAT was love at 1st sight!"
18) Kate Millerchip"My rush of love didn't come until about five days later. My eldest twin spent 3 days in special care and try to manage getting between both was so stressful that by the time they were back together all I could focus on was getting out of there. However, when we got them home, and they lay together, inside a hand me down gift we didn't know we needed, that's when it hits both me and my husband and we must have just sat and stared at them for hours!"
19) Neha Lau"I don't think I ever had a 'rush' of love. With my first it was a very long labour and I was rushed away after to control the bleeding so didn't get to hold my daughter for a few hours. I was overwhelmed, tired and anxious. Everyone tells you about this rush and as I didn't feel it, I felt really bad. I had a bit of pnd and it took me a while to realise just how much I was in love. With the second , things didn't do to plan again and all the same feelings came back. it wasn't until the next day when my daughter came to visit us and I saw them together I realised they were my world. Now I don't know what I would do without them."
20) Juma Hoque"I didn't have rush of love or felt oxytoxin until a few days, infact I remember feeling a bit of anger towards him and saying 'take him back' which I feel guilty of to this day! However I knew I would eventually and had a strong feeling to protect my baby and be worried a lot as soon after he was born."
21) Lara O'Hara"Not for a day. Felt very detached at first as I'd not slept in two days and was physically mentally exhausted. I didn't want to hold her. It wasn't what I thought would happen at all!"
22) Lisa Corbett"I never felt it. Everyone talks about it but I never got that rush. Probably because I struggled with PND almost immediately after giving birth. I didn't find out I was pregnant until I was already almost 3 months along, my son arrived 5 weeks early so felt like a very short pregnancy. I felt very detached in the first days and weeks. Even months. I feel like I've missed out on a lot because of PND "
23) Rachel Lindsay"I didn’t feel it immediately either but his birth was traumatic with an emcs and he was taken away for a couple of hours as he had a severe infection. I do remember staring at him asleep in those clear plastic cribs at the hospital in disbelief that he was mine and was actually here. I felt quite detached to begin with but of course the love did come in and it came in pretty strong, unfortunately it came in with a lot of anxiety too. I think my birth experience had quite an impact on my confidence and anxiety levels in those early months but it did improve and he is the most amazing thing to have happened to me..."
24) Fiona Clewer"Noah-George was 18 days late so I was very ready to meet him. He came into the world crying loudly and with tears I felt relief and joy wash over me. Then he was put on my chest and I felt so much love for my little person."
25) Abi Williams"I have four children and the only one I felt the instant rush of love straight after birth was with my fourth baby. It just overwhelmed me seeing her. With my other three children it came at a later stage, the longest being with my son, my third born. I really struggled to bond with him and didn't feel connected to him until around 6 months of age, looking back now I think I was suffering with pnd, but just didn't realise it at the time (I have a tendency to hide my feelings from others and act like everything's ok so my health visitor never picked up on it) I'm so glad I got the chance to experience the instant rush of love."
26) Amber Coleman"I expected to feel all these emotions. but didn’t feel anything I was numb for so long it wasn’t till 4 months later, that I just looked at my daughter and broke down with this overwhelming feeling of love. I had postnatal depression which was bloody hard but my life is complete with her. I always knew I loved her, it was just getting out of a dark park and letting myself feel it."
27) Emma Louise Wheal"With the 1st child it didn’t come till a couple of weeks later due to a stay in neonatal and struggling to breastfeed. For second baby when he came out I thought ‘gosh he looks angry’ but he breastfed straight away and the rush of endorphins made me fall in love!"
28) Beki Kempton"I was really anxious about giving birth as I was the first of my friendship group to become pregnant . However, I was really lucky and had a relatively easy birth - 6 hour labour and water birth - and felt an overwhelming feeling of love when I first held Emma in my arms. It really took me by surprise and my mum (birth partner) said I just lit up as soon as I held her."
29) Sophia LewisLike some of the other mums, I didn’t have a straightforward birth and George was taken to neonatal before I’d been able to hold him. I can honestly say when I saw him 5 hours later the love that I felt I didn’t know could exist. In that instance he became my world and he’s made every day of the past 17months amazing!
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