Tokophobia – Too Afraid To Have A Baby by A. Lauretta
(Link): Too Afraid to Have a Baby
- Tokophobia—a pathological dread of giving birth—might be causing some women to avoid pregnancy.
- ….Though there aren’t statistics in the United States for a pathological anxiety over pregnancy and childbirth—known as tokophobia— (Link): studies in Australia and Britain have found that 6 percent of pregnant women report a disabling fear of having babies, while 13 percent of women who are not yet pregnant are afraid enough to postpone or avoid pregnancy altogether.
- ….Pregnancy and childbirth do come with feelings of anxiety, of course: hopes that the mother and child will be safe and healthy, that there will be little to no complications during childbirth, that the first days and months at home will go smoothly.
- So when do common pregnancy jitters cross the line into a clinical phobia? And, if the phobia is as prevalent as some research suggests, why isn’t it more widely recognized? The answer may have to do with the difficulty of being open about not looking forward to something that most people consider a miracle—especially when more than six million women in the U.S. alone have problems getting or staying pregnant and may dream of having children.
- …Tokophobia is categorized in two forms: primary and secondary. The former can be understood through the lens of Mirren’s fear—often happening at a young age—when seeing disturbing images of birth or even resulting from sexual assault. The latter is often described similarly to post-traumatic stress disorder, resulting from a traumatic past birth experience.