Until i started my research about this post, I never knew that phobia for childbirth had an actual name. – Tokophobia. Wow, What phobia on earth has these people not named?
Anyways, this is quite an interesting topic because most women are actually afraid of childbirth. You can be reading this and you’re thinking ”realLy? what’s there to be afraid”. well, a lot! There is a lot to be afraid of.
Let me tell you a real life story, I have friend who is really so afraid of childbirth that it made her become afraid of getting married. It’s that serious.
She says gtting married would have to mean getting pregnant and giving birth. Guess why she is so afraid. ”Not only that I might get fat and shapeless and look less chicky, I cant imagine myself going through that excruciating pain” She said to me, with a very scary expression on her face and a body bathed with goose bumps.
I mean can u imagine? She is scared of looking less chicky. what will we not hear? But it happens. right? and there are many other women out there like that.
Tokophobia is often related with age. Having tokophobia as ayoung lady or a newly wed is not abnormal. Often times, once u get over your first child birth swiftly, your tokophobia dissapears, otherwise you might not be willing to go throughtt it agin.
If you have tokophobia, these might be the possible causes:
A learned fear: Difficult birth stories are retold more than easier ones, which can add to our belief that birth is dangerous.
General anxiety: You may have suffered from anxiety before pregnancy.
Trauma: A previously traumatic experience giving birth.
Abuse: Experiences of rape and childhood sexual abuse can be factors.
Antenatal depression: Fear may be one symptom of depression during pregnancy.
ACCORDING TO NETMUMS, TO OVERCOME TOKOPHBIA, THE FOLLOWING STEPS WOULD HELP;
1. Don’t bottle things up, this will only make it worse. Instead, tell your partner how you’re feeling and talk to friends – perhaps they’ve been through childbirth before and can help ease your fears.
2. Get to know your midwife. The support of a midwife you trust can make all the difference. Ask to see the same midwife at each antenatal appointment. If there is a member of staff you would prefer not to see it is okay to say so and if you’re not happy with your treatment you can always ask your GP for a second opinion.
3. Join an antenatal class. There are many uncertain aspects of childbirth – “How will I know I’m in labour?” “How long will the birth take?” “Will I have a midwife I know?” It’s impossible to answer any of these questions accurately and many women feel stressed and anxious by their lack of control over the sitution. Antenatal classes help pregnant women feel more prepared and confident about childbirth and talking to other pregnant women may help to ease your fears too. Find an antenatal class in your area
5.Think positive – your body is AMAZING! What a women’s body goes through during pregnancy and labour is absolutely incredible, it’s no wonder you’re a bit freaked out by it. But instead of being scared of childbirth, why not flip it around in your mind and instead be in complete awe of it. Your body was designed to do this and most births are straightforward. Surround yourself with positive birth stories, remind yourself of other new challenges you have coped with and believe that you can give birth.
6. Find out the facts. Take control by reading up on your choices. This can include everything from where you have your baby, pain relief options and who you have with you. Some women find requesting a caesarean section helps to ease their fears, but this decision should not be taken lightly