Reasons why a mother could hate her baby
Summarized from D.W. Winnicott’s 1947 paper Hate in the Countertransference
- wasn’t really her idea
- it’s not someone else’s kid
- “The baby is not magically produced” *
- pregnancy can kill ya
- interferes with me-time
- one’s own mother demands the child in some way
- breastfeeding hurts
- they offer no gratitude & expect to be waited on
- no other option but to love the thing
- they seriously bite you
- they don’t really get what’s going on, their judgments impartial
- “His excited love is cupboard love, so having got what he wants he throws her away like orange peel.” *
- baby’s the boss
- it’s completely unaware of all you’ve done for it
- often prefers the cooking of others
- strangers think it’s cute when it’s actually been quite fussy
- your failures will manifest in its difficult life, therapy’s expensive etc.
- both cannibalism and incest (presupposing these would shut it up) just can’t occur
* Sometimes even the strange blowhard patois of the psychoanalytic theorist is best left unsummarized.
- Where can one discreetly enjoy a nice, tightly rolled news story with a pleasing liberal bias?
- The boy’s ‘not a buddhist but admires strangeness’