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FIELD REPORTFirst Mate in the First Trimester (self.RedPillWomen)

submitted by girlwithabikeEndorsed Contributor

Next spring u/guywithgirlwithabike and I will be adding a sidecar to the bikes. Now that the dreaded first trimester is over, I want to share with you what I’ve learned about RPW principles, men (or at least my man) and early pregnancy. This is my experience. They say every pregnancy is different and I’m hoping that other women will add their experiences in the comments.

The Wall: aka declining fertility

There are as many interpretations of The Wall as there are members on the RP subs. I’ve always believed that for RPW it is important to consider for fertility purposes. At 35 I had an alarmingly easy time getting knocked up but I still believe that kids should not be delayed for as long as we did.

I’m the fourth in my group of five girlfriends to get pregnant over the last two years (with number five being devoutly childfree). Two of us had an easy time. Two had over a year of pain and heartbreak before conceiving. While I am thrilled to have the easy time that we did, hormones kick up all the worry that comes so naturally to many women.

So while I generally score low on personality trait neuroticism, that hasn’t stopped me from dwelling nonstop on how “advanced maternal age” will impact the little baby biker that I’m carrying. If we want to have more than one, it’s also in our best interest to do fairly back to back pregnancies which will be rough. Upside: since I’m an old lady my insurance covers all the tests.

Takeaway: Even if you take care of your looks, remember the fertility wall and plan accordingly.

Positive Masculinity

I’ve never been more glad that I read “For Women Only” than I have been these last three months. The lessons in that book really helped me to understand some of what Husband has been going through.

His provider instinct kicked in immediately and with it, a good deal of stress. I gave him some space and encouraged him to talk with friends. We had some long talks (that started as fights, more on that later) in which I was able to assure him that I was confident in him, together we would get through whatever and I didn’t expect anything long term decisions to be rushed. Knowing that he has this drive to provide for his family helped me to understand where all his stress was coming from.

His protector instinct also kicked in. The weekend after we found out he had a solo bike trip planned. He was going to meander through the state with a hammock and a camp stove for a few days. These are trips he takes from time to time to decompress and he always stretched them for as long as time allowed. I knew something in our world had shifted when he showed up at 9pm on Friday night. The Gay BFF and I were eating take out on the couch and he came in and announced: “I realized I was heading in the wrong direction”. Who are you and what did you do with my husband?!?

I make sure to address his instincts by graciously accepting whatever he offers. I lean on him to take care of me when I feel bad, to run out for food. I try my best to show appreciation and I tell him what a wonderful husband he is and how I wouldn’t want to do this with anyone else.

Takeaway: There are paternal instincts that kick in. Recognize where they might cause stress and do your best to understand that his world is changing too.

Ugh Pregnancy Hormones

I’ve heard that your pregnancy symptoms are similar to how you experience PMS. This was mostly true for me and meant general agitation along with soul crushing fatigue. Oh and I was really stupid. I had to stop reading books for a few weeks.

Over the years I’ve gotten decent at identifying when I’m cranky and letting Husband know. A lot of RPW ideas involve a level of stoicism with male nature. Well let me tell you, I had to relearn both these things in the first trimester. I found myself apologizing more than once when I realized I was bitchy for no real reason.

I also had a hard time handling his stress, even though I completely understood where it came from. We had a few knock down drag out fights that got out all of our stresses. All in all it was like being a volatile teenager again for a few weeks. Now I pay more attention to the quality of my mind and my emotions and am careful to identify the days I feel prickly.

I’ve also turned into an absolute garbage cook and housekeeper. This is also where allowing him to take care of me comes in. He’s picked up the slack so very much and told me the most important thing is to rest. Instead of getting angsty about not doing my jobs around the house, I believe that as the leader, he means what he says. I do what I can when I can. He does my chores when I can’t. I thank him for being wonderful when my brain works enough to remember.

Takeaway: He’s the leader so let him lead. Hormones are the worst, learn to recognize them and work around them.

Sex

This was the part of the first trimester where no RPW advice could possibly help me. My sex drive tanked and I felt tired and crappy more often than not. I couldn’t even give blow jobs as a consolation prize because the constant low level nausea made it too difficult.

Thankfully, even though sex is important to men, they aren’t thoughtless pigs and my husband was more than sympathetic.

We did have sex when all the stars aligned, the moon was full and it was a crisp 65 degrees. I jest but it definitely felt that way for 3 months. What I did do was tell him constantly that I was still attracted to him and that I couldn’t wait until the second trimester when everything is supposed to improve. When I had sex dreams about him, I woke up and shared immediately even if we couldn’t act on them. I made a point a few times to do my hair and make up or put on lingerie ie: put in the effort for sex even when it was sporadic.

He went to the gym … a lot.

Takeaway: Even if the act is infrequent, letting him know I still wanted him seemed to help. Also, sometimes you can’t and that just has to be ok.


We’re right at the end now and all the symptoms have been steadily improving. He is still taking care of me but I’ve been able to return to more of my normal chores. His stress has gotten better (or he’s gotten better at hiding it) as the new reality has settled in.

My overall takeaway from trimester one is that it’s the time when the Captain really is the Captain. You do what you can while he steers the ship. This is exactly why we are evolved to seek men with protector and provider traits.


[–]GingerDoughGirl 8 points9 points  (1 child)

This is a wonderful post! Congratulations on the little one on the way! It sounds like you guys are off to a fantastic start!

[–]girlwithabikeEndorsed Contributor[S] 7 points8 points  (0 children)

Thank you! It's not been all sunshine and roses but understanding each other has helped us work through some of the harder parts.

[–]Pixie03103 Stars 3 points4 points  (6 children)

Just want to thank you for this post. I'm 33, and this month fiance & I are going to start trying for our first. He has kids from his previous marriage, but I thought I didn't want any. I changed my mind.

This kind of covered some of the things I worry about (fertility at a slightly older age, what to expect emotionally, etc), and so I really appreciate your sharing. I have never read a single book, blog, or - tbh - listened to a single conversation between friends when it turned to pregnancy talk. So I literally have no idea what to expect. I eat fertility-positive foods, exercise, and take a prenatal vitamin. I try everyday to be a good person, and I don't feel scared of being a mom. Oh, and my scope is up for baby names I like.

Beyond that, I'm pretty much totally in the dark. I don't want to flood myself with info and stress myself out over it. I do worry - mainly - if I'll even be able to conceive. I do want two kids, so after the first, it'll be a rush for the second.

Do you think it's worth it to read up? Any book recommendations? Or do you think it's best to just avoid flooding my brain?

[–]girlwithabikeEndorsed Contributor[S] 6 points7 points  (2 children)

I'm glad it was helpful :-)

Some stuff: I'd been off birth control for a while (which I do think makes a difference) but we were actively avoiding pregnancy until the month that we conceived. I have never had a legit scare in my life. I didn't think for a second that it would be as easy as it was especially with my age. I think I had a few things going for me...I've long taken chasteberry supplements to regulate my cycle which is clockwork. I'm thin and in shape. And frequent sex is supposed to adapt your body and make his sperm better or something like that -- short story have much sex with your man even when you aren't trying.

Being older certainly isn't the end of the world it's just not what I'd choose if I could go back and talk to 24 year old me. Especially for me since I've been with my husband since then. I thought it would take a while because of my age and it stressed me out a bit. In the end, age doesn't have to be a death sentence for your ability to conceive so don't let it stress you until there is a reason. I think the fertility docs sees you in a year of TTC if you are under 35 and 6 months if you are 35 or older. So don't stress until it's been a year.

I didn't read a single book or blog. I did have an idea about how my cycle worked (there are only about 5 days that you can get pregnant) and I was using the Ava bracelet to track it. I didn't pick up a pregnancy book or a baby book until after the positive test. For me, I would have gone too crazy fixating on it before there was a positive. Then I bought all the books.

I did watch friends and family go through it before me so I didn't feel like I was going in too blind. I just wanted to not be too obsessive until life threw complications at me and I had to be OR until I was pregnant.

There are some good subreddits too. If you start at r/BabyBump and check out their wiki, I think a lot of the TTC ones are linked.

In your place I'd at least make it through the wedding before flooding my brain with subreddits or books or blogs. But PM me any time you need a friend :-)

[–]bambiliftsweights 0 points1 point  (1 child)

Can you talk more about chasteberry to regulate your cycle?

[–]girlwithabikeEndorsed Contributor[S] 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I started taking it years ago to help with PMS.Here is the webmd. I believe it helps regulate progesterone but whatever it specifically does, it helped the pms symptoms be shorter and less crazy.

It's over the counter and you take a pill a day. It's pretty subtle and for me, I just sort of realized one day that I wasn't as crazy as I used to be. That fit with what my doc said would happen. It didn't make all the symptoms go away but I could usually predict what I'd feel like on a given day of my cycle.

Some place say that it helps with fertility, others (like webmd) say it's inconclusive.

[–]cocodecoca 0 points1 point  (2 children)

My advice: it can take a healthy couple up to a year to get pregnant. It took me 9 months of trying and I was so stressed - I regret that now, everything was fine. Nobody talks about how long it took for them.

[–]Pixie03103 Stars 0 points1 point  (1 child)

Yeah, I'm trying not to think about it too much. We haven't officially started yet - not til my next cycle. He's had an easy time (too easy) in the past, but that was his first wife, and it might be different for me. I have never been pregnant so I have no idea. I'll try not to overthink it! Hard once your clock is ticking, since I'm already 33 & want two kids.

[–]cocodecoca 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Apparently it starts declining properly at 35 so you have time. Everyone ages differently. It's not a hard and fast rule for every woman.

I'm thinking about baby number 2 in a year or so. I'm not ready but that clock is ticking 😥

[–]loneliness-incEndorsed Contributor 2 points3 points  (1 child)

Excellent post!

I have nothing to add other than - congratulations!!!

[–]girlwithabikeEndorsed Contributor[S] 5 points6 points  (0 children)

Thank you!

I have nothing to add

Mark the calendar! It's a first! ;-)

[–]KittenLoves_Endorsed Contributor 2 points3 points  (1 child)

Congratulations, and thank you for this very insightful post! :)

And can I just point out that this:

he came in and announced: “I realized I was heading in the wrong direction”.

is absolutely the most adorable thing, like, ever? It sounds like it was taken out of a romance novel for how cute it is; I almost don't believe it's real. ;P

[–]girlwithabikeEndorsed Contributor[S] 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Thank you. It's a topic that we don't talk about too much but will hit most women here at some point. I'm hoping to do one for the second and third trimester but watching what my friends went through makes me think the third installment will come around the kids first birthday :-P.

I almost don't believe it's real.

I wouldn't either if I didn't hear it for myself. But I have a witness!

[–]RubyWooToo3 Stars 2 points3 points  (1 child)

Great advice! It’s sad there isn’t more advice for women on how pregnancy effects relationships.

[–]girlwithabikeEndorsed Contributor[S] 2 points3 points  (0 children)

I wish there was more out there! I've been plowing through pregnancy and parenting books and so far only 1 has given any focus to the relationship between mom and dad and the importance of maintaining that. It has a "bias" towards married parents being good for kids and the amazon reviews just blast it for that.

I've also noticed something interesting: my friends who have already been through this take the issues of pregnancy a lot more seriously. The relationship stuff, the fatigue getting in the way of work, the desire to eat well even if you are doing terribly at it. Women who haven't been through it have a much more "do what you want" attitude about the whole thing. In their minds, simply being pregnant is an excuse for anything. Looking back, I wouldn't be surprised if I was like this myself. Until you get here, it's hard to realize that you still have to live your life with all the good decisions and responsibilities (to yourself and others) as you did pre-bump.

[–]WhySoOverHeated 1 point2 points  (1 child)

This is a great post, thank you so much for your words.

[–]girlwithabikeEndorsed Contributor[S] 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Thank you and you are welcome 😄

[–]teaandtalk4 Stars 1 point2 points  (1 child)

Coming back to read in detail, but congrats to you both!!!

[–]girlwithabikeEndorsed Contributor[S] 0 points1 point  (0 children)

😀 thank you!

[–]LawyerInTheMaking 1 point2 points  (3 children)

is it wrong to say that i hope you take a family photo in one of these? lol congratulations on the baby on the way

[–]girlwithabikeEndorsed Contributor[S] 2 points3 points  (2 children)

That's amazing and now I want it too :-P.

[–]Guywithgirlwithabike2 Stars 0 points1 point  (1 child)

From the engine casing that appears to be a Ural, but they make sidecars for our Royal Enfields as well. I will add that to the list of things to get.

Or did you just mean the picture?

[–]girlwithabikeEndorsed Contributor[S] 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I meant the pictures. I assumed that I have an actual side car in my future but I'm hoping to negotiate an age requirement for putting a kid on a motorcycle. :-P

[–][deleted]  (1 child)

[removed]

[–]pearlsandstilettosModerator | Pearl[M] 6 points7 points  (0 children)

Be polite or be quiet

[–]Ruinedgirl22 0 points1 point  (1 child)

Omg congratulations!!!!! How exciting!

[–]girlwithabikeEndorsed Contributor[S] 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Thank you :-)

[–]RainbowKitty77 0 points1 point  (1 child)

Omg congrats on your pregnancy!

[–]girlwithabikeEndorsed Contributor[S] 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Thank you :-)