You always hear people saying that pregnant women have a “glow” about them. It’s true - most expectant mothers enjoy being pregnant. However, some women may like it a little too much. Experts say these women are driven to rapidly reproduce out of insecurity, a craving for attention, or feelings of abandonment. Here are the details, courtesy of USA Today.
They’ve been deemed “Bumpaholics” – because of their bellies, and they’re cropping up more and more. According to the CDC, American women gave birth to more than 4.3 million babies in 2007 — the highest number ever. More than a quarter of those women were having their 3rd or 4th child. While many simply want big broods because that’s how they grew up, experts say that some women feel driven to be constantly pregnant. Dr. Carole Lieberman is a psychiatrist in Beverly Hills. She says that bumpaholics feel compelled to procreate for the same reasons that substance abusers turn to booze or drugs - to fill a void inside of them. Only in a bumpaholic’s case - it’s literal. Once they give birth, their infants depend on them, which helps give mothers a clear identity.
Babies also become handy social buffers. At a party or on the playground, a woman struggling with feelings of anxiety or self-consciousness can hide behind her child. Any pressure to be cute or charming or funny disappears — the baby has that covered. As family therapist Bonnie Eaker Weil puts it, “Bumpaholics breed to blot out their feelings of insecurity.”
Then of course there’s the hormone rush. An expectant mother gets a feel-good oxytocin blast as she rubs her belly – it’s a way of bonding. Some women can’t get enough of this. As you can imagine, psychologists say this “bumpaholic” behavior is harmful to a woman’s emotional health. That's because eventually, her body won’t physically be able have babies anymore. She’ll inevitably face an emptiness when her kids grow up and leave home - one she won’t be able to fill with another baby. Weil says it’s vital for parents to realize that the only time to bring another baby into the family is when you already have a balanced life, not in an effort to try to create one.