15 Ways To Bond With Your Unborn Baby
Birth is not the beginning. It is a continuation, another level of life, following the time in the womb. Your baby is as much a member of your family at one week old in the womb as he is at one week old following birth. Unborn babies have emotional needs. They need to be loved and nurtured, acknowledged and accepted. This is where prenatal bonding comes in. The good news is it’s simple! Below are 15 examples of how to incorporate your unborn baby into your life (prenatal bonding), giving him the gift of a lifetime!
- As you go from one activity in your day to another, talk to your baby as though he were right there in front of you, tagging along in your arms, a wrap, a stroller, etc. (In reality, he IS right there WITH you! :)
- Announce what you are doing as you go through your day. (Example: “Okay, let’s see what we’re making for lunch today. What would you like to eat? What are you in the mood for?”) Such a simple thing, and yet the feelings of fun and partnership that it creates provide a huge value for your baby!
- When you feel a kick (perhaps in response to some of your communication above), touch your tummy and say “Oh, you like that, huh?” -or- “I’m right here, sweetie. Yes, mama’s here.” It’s all about communication and acknowledgement.
- When you feel the slightest butterfly feeling (as we do in the early, early months), touch your belly and talk to your baby. Let her know you felt it, and that you acknowledge her presence. It feels SO good to baby!
- At night, when you are going to sleep, touch and rub your belly, and talk to your baby. Talk about what you did or how it felt to have him with you all day. Talk about having a “wonderful night sleep, resting, growing, and feeling loved.”
- Play gentle, soothing music while you are going to sleep. If you play a special soft, relaxing music while you lay down to sleep every night with your baby, she WILL remember the music. It may not be a conscious memory where she can tell you why that music feels good to her (i.e. she “remembers” it in the womb), but she will gravitate towards it. (And, do not be surprised if your kids DO remember the music is from the womb! We remember everything.) My kids still LOVE the music I played during pregnancy. And, what an awesome opportunity that has been for me to remind them how much I loved and enjoyed them during pregnancy. (And I recommend playing the same music after birth. They love it; it is soothing as they transition into this new world.)
- Play soft and loving music in the middle of your day as well, as a time to rest, relax and connect. The key is how you feel while you are relaxing. The baby will pick up on your relaxation, peace and love.
- Sit and have quiet time with your baby. Just sit in your favorite chair, feet up, rubbing your tummy, and talking about whatever is in your heart.
- Spend 5-10 minutes going through the “Who I Am” Energy Cards, feeling the energy of each card, and sharing that feeling with your baby.
- Play games! When your baby kicks, gently poke back. See if he will kick again in that same spot, kick in another spot, or wait until you become still, at which time he kicks again. Then talk about it, giggle, and continue playing. Some babies play hide-n-seek! (Mine did!)
- What dad can do: When dad says “Hi!” to mom, he can reach down and touch mom’s belly and also say “Hi!” to baby too. The warm feeling that it creates in mom + the warm feeling that it creates in dad = warm fuzzies for baby! Doing this on a regular basis will create an automatic response for the baby. Dad’s voice will = warm fuzzies for baby, because that has been baby’s experience. What an awesome way for dad to start his relationship with the baby!
- Dads can talk to baby at night when it’s time to rest. The sound of dad’s voice, the warmth between mom and dad, the music ~ it all creates a wonderful feeling for baby, and one that baby will remember in his cells and body for his entire life.
- Siblings can bond! Encourage siblings to draw and color pictures, and then to give them to the baby. To do that, they simply walk up to mommy’s tummy, say what they would like to say, and hand the picture to mommy. Be sure to “receive” the gift and to share with brother/sister how happy that makes baby feel. (It really does!) Then, hang the picture up in baby’s nursery or wherever appropriate for display. (Great item to date and write a few notes on the back for a future keepsake!)
- Sitting down, close your eyes and place both hands on your belly. Breathe in and breathe out. Think about your baby. Visualize your baby playing, sucking on her thumb, smiling, knowing she is loved. Just feel love, warmth and peace as you place your hands on your belly. Feel the love in your heart, and intend that it fill your baby with love and peace. This will be a wonderful time for both of you!
- Write letters to your baby! I loved doing this with all three of my children. You can write about a doctor’s appointment, a sibling’s first day of school, how excited you are that the nursery is now painted, or just to say “hi”. Again, the key and the intention in this exercise is that your baby feels included, loved and safe. Mom can actually feel this from the baby, when she takes the time to connect and listen.
Since your baby feels everything you feel during pregnancy, this is an opportunity to set your baby up to expect a wonderful life. And, no need to try for perfection, or beat yourself up for having an off day. Just remember it’s about love, freedom and recognizing her presence. It’s also about honesty. You can’t hide your feelings from your baby, so just acknowledge that they are there, let your baby know that it’s your “stuff,” not hers, and give your baby permission to be a baby, enjoying life in the womb.
If you are going through crisis, or have a lot of stress in your life, you may want to order 14 Simple Steps to Shielding Your Unborn Baby from Stress and/or Crisis.
Traci L. Carman
A Loving Way ~ How I Parent Makes a Difference
(Traci Carman is the Founder and CEO of A Loving Way ~ How I Parent Makes a Difference. She is also the Creator of the “Who I Am” Energy Cards. Sign up for her free newsletter at alovingway.com.)