Vanessa Lachey: Why I Didn’t Immediately Bond with My Baby Bump

11/16/2014 at 01:00 PM ET

She may make pregnancy look good, but Vanessa Lachey insists the path to parenthood is filled with its fair share of bumps.

For the actress, who is expecting her second childa girl! — with husband Nick, one of her toughest moments came while pregnant with her now 2-year-old son Camden John.

“I felt guilty because everyone told me about this love I’d feel, and I wasn’t there yet,” she says in the December/January issue of American Baby.

“I remember asking Nick, ‘Is something wrong with me? I’ve wanted this my whole life and I’m forcing myself to have those feelings.'”

Vanessa Lachey pregnant American Baby
Justin Coit for American Baby

But Vanessa, 34, recalls the exact day her sentiments toward her baby belly shifted. “For me, the love really flowed when I found out the baby was a boy,” she explains. “That’s when I could finally bond, once I knew ‘it’ was a him.”

The struggles didn’t stop after she welcomed her son in September 2012. Vanessa — who has been opened about her battle with the baby blues — admits she was forced to take things slow as she settled into motherhood.

“Remember to be patient. It’s hard! As a baby, Camden would take about an hour to breastfeed. By the time he finished, it was almost time to feed again,” she recalls.

Instead of becoming frustrated, Vanessa used those quiet moments to soak up time with her newborn.

“A friend reminded me that infants are learning everything for the first time,” she explains. “So who am I to say, ‘Hurry up and eat. We have to go?’ I tried to look at that time as an opportunity to love on him.”

Now that she’s set to welcome her second child just after the holidays, Vanessa is more confident in her parenting role and wants other mamas to embrace the exciting moment in their lives.

“Worrying is a waste of time. Once Camden was born, certain fears calmed down,” she says. “I no longer thought, ‘Will I be able to do this?’ My instincts really did kick in.”

She adds, “We stumble and make mistakes, too, but that’s what learning is. That’s the beauty of it. Every mother out there knows what she’s doing, whether she believes it yet or not.”

Oh, and one more thing, she adds: Don’t let fellow mothers and their “best moments” on social media put a damper on your day.

“Don’t feel like you’re not doing enough when you see a mom posting about making applesauce after you bought it,” she says with a laugh. “It’s fine! Just for raising a little human being you should be commended.”

Vanessa Lachey pregnant American Baby
Justin Coit for American Baby

— Anya Leon

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Showing 56 comments

Rebeccah on

The term ‘baby bump’ and ‘bumpin’ are two of the dumbest things I have ever heard in my life. And how does one manage to ‘bond’ with a bump? #lame

Cricket2.0 on

I never bonded with my “bumps” (we must stop using this phrase!) either. I bonded with my babies. Hated the belly.

julie on

well gosh rebeccah, that wasn’t judgmental at all.

Debbe on

I am so glad I did not have to go through what she did. I was happy and felt love for my son the moment I found out I was pregnant and even before they told me it was a boy. I just knew it was a boy and I just love him. Although i was sick the first three months with what Princess Kate gets, and a little out of it during that time, I was in fight mode to get through it for him. Everything was about him and not me. So like I said, I am glad that I had what I had and not experienced what she did. Afterall, she has a wonderful man by her side to support and assist her, I would not have. So good thing it was easy for me since I was a single mom.

MollyF on

Rebeccah, no you’re #lame

Debbe on

TO REBECCAH, I bonded with my baby bump. Before the bump, I bonded with the thought that inside of me is a precious baby. Once the bump came, I bonded even more and I could see he was growing and extending outward. I could even feel his feet poke out of my belly at 6 months. So, I get the bonding with the bump thing. It just means enjoying your pregnancy, the baby growing outward. It really doesn’t matter what the terminology is, we know what they mean.

BiteMe on

I bet Jessica Simpson would disagree. Next.

Guest on

I agree with Rebeccah………

Jezz on

Good perspective. She does not come off as pretentious or as a know it all. Sweet article.

Marie on

I can honestly say I have never commented on any of these articles, but felt moved…..bless your heart Vanessa, and all you Mommies out there.

I worked in OB/Gyn for almost 20 years…….so glad to see someone who can realize that the whole deal is a growth process….from feeling nauseated, to the “bump” (not a term we used back then), to finding out the gender of your baby, to the whole idea of birthing this fabulous creation……and the pleasure of those long ( sometimes frustrating) moments getting to know this lovely human you and your husband (or loved one) created. Such love. Such an opportunity to be so human yourself.

Glad to see people talking about this…..many women are so un-supported in these special life moments. To the moon and back……find joy in the process.

Ella on

she’s beautiful… proof that you don’t have to take your clothes off to look beautiful on a mag cover while pregs. 🙂

Angelica on

She looks beautiful.

pavitrasarala on

She looks terrific. I hope her experience and being more comfortable this time around will make things easier. Heaven knows adjusting to a newborn brings unique challenges each time, be they big or small, and motherhood is rarely what they make it look like in magazines.

Melissa on

I love that Vanessa Lachey is keeping it real. We all experience different emotions during pregnancy and child birth. It’s nice that she does not have to feel like she has to put up a front that everything is always perfect like so many other celebs.

Congratulations on the new baby! Can we all just stop hating on each other and support one another.

Brittany on

I can fully relate to her. I had trouble bonding with both of my children while I was pregnant. The first because it was a surprise and the second because I was depressed. I’m currently pregnant with our third child and am treasuring this gift every single day. I can’t wait to meet this baby and introduce them to their big brother and sister!

Stacy on

Love her!

S on

I appreciate her honesty. I wanted to be a mother for as long as I can remember but pregnancy was rougher than I expected. It wasn’t until my son was born that I really felt a connection, and even then, those baby blues hit me HARD.

It took about 4-6 weeks for me to really feel that LOVE. Before then, I was running on fumes from a traumatic birth and insane hormones. Talking to other women who went through the same thing made me feel like maybe I wasn’t a failure, but just dealing with the less talked about side of early motherhood.

rose on

I had a relative who had a hard time bonding with her newborn. It look a very long time. At the time, I remember thinking that she was odd. We weren’t as educated about post partum blues back then. Luckily, she had a very supportive and hands on husband who helped her through it. She never had another child.

Anonymous on

The first two comments are just unnecessary. I don’t see how u cannot bond with your baby bump!! I love being pregnant!!!! Yes, I like the term baby bump! Maybe if it takes you a while to get pregnant, like it took us, u tend to appreciate everything about pregnancy even more! Even all the not so pleasant parts. I was Inlove from the moment I found out and I know I will be Inlove with my lil girl for the rest of my life!! To me, that is what being a mom is all about!

Lady on

Anonymous, you cannot see why someone would not experience things the same exact way you experience them? Should we all have the exact same experiences and feelings and likes and dislikes? You loved your pregnancy from day one…congratulations. Some people will never experience pregnancy, but will adopt…so have they missed out on what being a mom is all about?

Sue d on

Yawn. Now we have to analyze how we bond with our baby bump. So ridiculous.

AmberWaves on

Rebeccah sad what you see as the dumbest and lame. Hope your life gets better.

dysturbed on

#Rebeccah is an idiot

Shirley on

That could be the single worst and dumbest headline ever! Enough with the BUMPS.

Tonja on

I like the point she made about social media and not let it ruin your day. I can so relate

Sara K on

I love her. She’s so beautiful, smart, and classy!

Tisha on

Having a baby is one of the most wonderful, and frightening things I have ever done…I was a mom at 22 and very frightened.. Thank God I had good women in my life to help teach me the things I need to know..washing my baby,swaddling, and everything else I was so afraid of..when I had our second child, I still had apprehension.. But it was easier the second time around..I did have a bad bought of postpartum, thank goodness for antidepressants.. I’m now a grandmother of 3…everyone’s journey is their own..never be afraid to ask for help.

dd on

she’s a little doll isn’t she? she seems like a happy, normal person…!

AppetiteDeluxe on

Every woman has different experiences with her pregnancy. Personally I did not enjoy mines. It was my first. Morning sickness I was violently sick lost 15lbs first trimester. I had swollen feet, pressure ‘down there’ was unbearable at times, my gums were swollen and bled, my hair fell out, I gained 50lbs, just walking seemed like a chore/task lol it was difficult and my son was 10lbs at birth. Let me know even go into trying to have a love live with my hubby lol So mines was not the best experience but my God if all that didn’t go out the window once I saw that chubby cute face! Beyond worth it

kW on

I hated being pregnant. All three times I had rashes, nausea, radiating pain in my pelvis and down my thighs, I was clumsy, uncomfortable. I had streaky red stretch marks everywhere, my boobs hurt and leaked. I hated it! But I loved on those babies the minute they were finally out with all of my heart and soul (still do! always will!). Loving a “bump” is over rated. The pressure on us breeding women is just ridiculous.

skiiy on

I’m not sure what acting she has done to earn that prestigious title , but I like her. Nick so made the right decision dumping J for V. Classy, pretty, smart.

Dawn on

What a lovely, compassionate woman to share the things she shared. Every woman’s experience is different but I really appreciate that she wanted other moms to know her personal experience wasn’t all sunshine and roses–loved the nursing part because women tend to quit when they don’t feel like it’s “working” when in fact it is and it’s such an awesome experience to have with your baby! And I loved her comment about the applesauce/social media. What a cool chick!

Kell on

She didn’t use the term ‘bump’ once, People did. To me, it’s a stupid word someone might use to let a toddler know there’s a baby in there. Why are these mags insisting on using that word?

serafina on

obviously everyone is different and comparisons with other people just creates angst. i felt nothing for either of my kids until i met them. some parts of being pregnant were cool (feeling the baby kick etc) but there was no “bonding”. for others it sounds like its different and the whole process is a big deal. lets put honest info out there and stop making women feel like there is a right & wrong way to feel.

k on

Who cares.. and really who is she anyways. Must be a slow news day.

Rozzy on

I didn’t bond with my bumps. For me it was a Defence mechanism I thought. 2 years before my first baby was born, a friend of mine lost her baby at 37 weeks.

I couldn’t imagine a loss of that magnitude so it wasn’t until I could meet my babies that I was able to bond with them.

MM on

I’ve never been pregnant and I will never be given the opportunity to be pregnant. I would love to have known what it was like to be pregnant and to feel the BUMP!!

ALM on

She’s so self-absorbed, I’m amazed she even wants kids for anything other than trendy accessories.

KellyK on

I LOVED being pregnant with all 4 of my kids. I immediately bonded as soon as I knew when I was pregnant! It got even more intense when they started moving! Enjoy every moment pregnant people, Your blessed!

valeskas on

Vanessa, I went to the same thing.

Anonymous on

Why do we denigrate our children and call them bumps. A bump in the road is a mistake a bad thing It is not an endearing term.

Kell on

She didn’t call it a ‘bump’ or ‘baby bump’ even once. That stupid term is maybe a way to describe pregnancy to a toddler. Why these mags use this term is beyond strange.

Somme on

I absolutely loathe and despise the term “baby bump” or “bump” when describing the state of pregnancy. It sounds idiotic. I’d like to wring the neck of whoever coined the term! And who the hell bonds with their “baby bump?” This woman sounds like a total idiot.

Shirley on

We KNOW you are pregnant. You don’t have to cradle your bump in every picture we see!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Lvelacey on

I never really thought she was down to earth until I read this . I agree this article is really nice to hear for someone who maybe has questions about the feeling of how you should feel about being pregnant.

Callie on

I really like her. She’s beautiful and seems so down-to-earth. They make a lovely couple and their son is gorgeous so the baby girl should be stunning

Noneya on

Well no wonder she didn’t bond with her “bump!” She said it exactly the way it was for her – once she knew “it” was a “he!”

Camie on

Give her an effing break, Rebeccah. I’m due any day now and I don’t follow her career but her words really helped me.

Kat on

Now women are being judged for not adequately “bonding” with a fetus? Seriously?

tom on

That is why all us Viet-Nam vets like “Phlip- Pussy”.

Anonymous on

Other anonymous- I can’t speak for anyone else, of course, but to me the term “bump” isn’t referring to the baby- it’s referring the round, protruding belly made BY the baby! 🙂

Renee on

Rozzy I felt the exact same way. I’d been very excited about my first and then when I miscarried I was very nervous about bonding during my subsequent pregnancies, not to mention I just really dislike being pregnant and spewing every day for 9 months.
Nice to see a celeb sharing these views

Lilly on

Kat, YOU’RE the idiot! The “fetus” as you call it has a beating heart which means it is BABY! Its idiots like you I would like to punch in the head. Educate yourself so next time you don’t portray yourself as a complete idiot with NO education. Oh BTW Obama sucks too. I can just tell you are a bama lover.

Anonymous on

Somme- If anyone sounds like “idiots” it’s PEOPLE, as they’re the ones that used the term “bump”. not Vanessa!

liza on

Seriousy Lilly? What on EARTH does President Obama have to do with Vanessa or this article? I swear the obsession with some of you is pathetic.

Sara on

I think Vanessa is beautiful, and her bump is too! Stop the hatin’ and start lovin’ y’all.