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16th Jul 2023

‘I want to become a parent, but I’m terrified of pregnancy’

A woman has asked for advice when it comes to becoming a parent after admitting she wants to be a mum but is terrified of being pregnant.

The 31-year-old said that up until this point in life, she was happy being child-free but has recently considered the idea of having a child.

The fear is so extreme that even looking at other pregnant women makes her “toes curl up” and is aware of how much pregnancy can change her body forever.

Revealing she already suffers from premenstrual dysphoric disorder and is autistic, she doesn’t want to add any more issues to her list – as well as birth being exacerbated by PMDD and autism making pregnancy a “sensory nightmare”.

She said: “I used to think I’d like to adopt so I read and read about adoption, joined several online groups, and began following lots of adoptees.

“I don’t know if any of you has ever heard of adoption trauma, as it’s usually kept hidden in mainstream adoption media, but a concerning percentage of adoptees is extremely resentful towards their situation, and many grow up to cut all ties with their adopting family and rejoin their birth family when possible.

“I can’t fathom dedicating most of my life, time, love, and resources to a child only for them to hate me for adopting them later on, so I’ve decided adoption is not for me.”

Later looking into surrogacy and finding out it can cost hundreds of thousands, she couldn’t justify spending that much and asks if her only option now is to remain child-free.

Responding to her query, one person said on Reddit: “I posted before that if someone could hand me a fully formed baby, I’d be a parent tomorrow. It’s ridiculous that we are expected to sign up for a forever body-altering medical procedure and start the hardest job anyone can have on the exact same day. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, in the year of our lord 2023, we should be able to grow new humans in pods by now.”

Another said: “Please speak to a therapist about this—it’s okay if you still don’t want to have kids, but this sounds like legit tokophobia. You deserve to be able to be out in public without panicking if you see a pregnant person.”

What advice would you share with this woman?