When Partners Become Parents: The Big Life Change for Couples

By Carolyn Pape Cowan; Philip A. Cowan | Go to book overview

CHAPTER 3
The Pregnant Pause: Nine Long Months

When the doctor called with the news that I was pregnant, I was so excited I wanted to run out on the street and tell everybody I met.

One night she had a vivid dream about having a baby. She woke me up, turned to me, and I knew right away that she was pregnant. The whole thing felt like jumping off a cliff.

I felt confused -- a mixture of up and down, stunned, in a daze, really.

When the test results came back positive, my reaction was, "Oh no, this can't happen now!"

These variations on a theme remind us that the enthusiastic Planners, the pleasantly surprised or acquiescent Acceptance-of-Fate partners, the dragging-their-feet Ambivalent couples, and the battling Yes-No spouses have traveled very different paths to the milestone of their first pregnancy. We first meet with couples in their sixth or seventh month of pregnancy, some time after their initial reactions of delight, surprise, resignation, or shock in finding out they are going to become parents have settled down. They typically have one of three pictures of pregnancy: They see it as a time of dreadful illness, as a period of refuge, or as a simple inconvenience.

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