Q&A: What does stress do to a developing baby?
I am under a lot of stress and My husband and I aren't getting along. What does stress do to the developing baby?
Stress, although not helpful, in my opinion has little effect on the baby. Except in soap operas of course where an actress can miscarry from one argument! I suppose that epinephrine (adrenaline) is released to some extent, and that can raise your pulse rate and the baby’s, but this is a natural substance and we all adjust to it fairly well. In short, these babies are pretty tough, and natural stress probably has very little to do with any damage that can be done.
You, on the other hand, can suffer greatly with stress. Your coronary arteries can build plaque, your emotional ups and downs can be all the more unstable, and it’s just not fun at all to add stress to an already stressful physiologic system (you + baby). I would recommend counseling — because a substantial downside to what’s going on is that the baby may end up being raised in a one-parent family.
Although that isn’t bad necessarily (because many are put into that situation), it’s still worth it to the baby to try harder. Often pregnancy is a test of the stability of a marriage, but it’s just the first real test. There are more to come. Nothing important is ever easy. You two need to go all out for your marriage, your family, and the baby you made together.