Atomic Gas!

I realized a few nights ago that people are meant to find each other, and so much of it has to do with TIME AND PLACE and what you were hoping for at that moment. Take the Bear for instance. Perhaps I would not have chosen him (or let him choose me) if my heart wasn’t ready and open. Had I still been fantasizing about poolboys fanning me with palm fronds, I might have missed out on a wonderful partner.

Conversely, the events which conspired a few days ago made me exclaim that he should be so happy that we have a marriage contract, because if we were still dating, I’d have to reacess the whole thing! While I made the statement in jest (and frustration), I think there’s a bit a truth to the TIMING part.

I was certain that the Bear had Couvade Syndrome- a condition in which the male partner takes on the sympathetic symptoms of pregnancy. It is not uncommon for men who subconsciously want to share in the birthing experience. My friends even speak of it. One mentioned today that he gained 10 pounds during his wife’s third trimester. He blamed her for always ordering Chinese take out on Fridays.While the Bear has certainly upped the ante on his oreo consumption, I do detect a bit of “bump envy”. I have to admit that his “bump” is much bigger than mine right now!

Let me get back to what happened a few days ago. The Bear was lying on the couch, moaning with nausea. I was beginning to get annoyed, assured that my hunch was correct and he was psychosomatically PREGNANT. I even explained the Couvade Syndrome to him, and showed him a reference in HIS baby books! But then he soon began to have what was more like food poisoning, or an intestinal virus, or even a tapeworm. Three days he spent in bed, and our room began to smell like a Time Square bus depot. I tried to play the good wife with soup and pudding cups, but it got to the point that I had to beg him to shower.

Let me just explain that I have a sub-human sense of smell right now. I can go nose for nose with a bloodhound, and would probably win. Call it pregnancy nose, but my nausea has not subsided either.

So here is the Bear, completely beside himself. His stomach has past the gurgling stage and is full on MOANING. and the GAS- -it’s atomic!!! I had to open a vial of aromatherapy and douse the sheets in it to keep from loosing my cookies. Perhaps this is a prelude of what to expect when our child is sick.  It was awful!

That is why I am glad we are already sealed in a marriage contract. Of course I would stay by his side through anything. But if we were in the euphoria of a new dating situation, would my reaction be the same?

While I love the honesty and the depth of a truly loving relationship, I recognize that we now see each other in all of our splendor and grotesque beauty.

I don’t think I would trade it for anything. 


More on Couvade Syndrome from

Couvade Syndrome 

Sympathetic Pregnancy

By , Guide

Dads, have you ever noticed that you were gaining weight along with your partner’s pregnancy? Do you find yourself feel queasy at certain times of the day? Have you experienced appetite changes? Then you may be experiencing Couvade Syndrome.

Couvade comes from the french word couvee meaning “to hatch”. It has come to mean a man having a “sympathetic pregnancy.” Yes, ladies, this means that your partner could start to vomit, gain weight, and have many of the “joys” associated with pregnancy.

Generally, couvade syndrome begins in the end of the first trimester and increases in severity until the third trimester. The only known cure for couvade is — birth.

Some people have doubted the reality of couvade syndrome. These doubters say that the weight gain that the father may experience is caused by the eating habits of the mother, nerves, or other changes that pregnancy makes in one’s life. The vomiting? Of course, that is blamed on nerves, too.

What do the dads have to say about this? They don’t know what to think about vomiting, weight gain, and changes in sexual appetite. How can you tell everyone at work that you need to lie down because you have morning sickness?!? And, of course, they would stop vomiting if they could.

This is something that has been researched and found to be quite real. Some men are more susceptible to couvade than others. For instance if you and your partner have experienced infertility or if you were adopted, you could be more likely to experience couvade syndrome.

So, guys, know that you are not alone, and that you have the medical community backing you up. Eat some crackers, get out of bed slowly, drink some ginger tea and try to get a bit of rest and know that birth is right around the corner.

And don’t shove her out of the way of the toilet!


2 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by bwakeling on February 26, 2010 at 6:31 pm

    You may be interested in my blog if you want to know how your partner is really feeling during your pregnancy!

    All the best,



  2. Yes, there is a lot to be said for the “for better or worse” part. And I agree, part of what I love about my marriage is that I can be 100% honest about myself and he doesn’t leave. And it goes both ways. The icky parts expound on the depth of the relationship.

    Congrats on the pregnancy!


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