Creating a bond with baby before they’re born

Pregnancy is the perfect time to start forming a bond with baby, not only for you but also for your partner, other caregivers, and older siblings.

Whilst pregnancy is a magical time for you, it’s also a time that your baby is becoming more and more aware of themselves and their surroundings as their senses gradually develop.

Prenatal bonding is important because it can help to create a stronger attachment with the baby once they’re earth side. In addition, it’s beneficial for infant development, and can make the experience of birth and new parenthood so much more rewarding.

When is it a good time to start to bond with baby during pregnancy?

  • Around 18 weeks, your baby can hear the sounds of your body.
  • After 18 weeks, they will like sleeping while you’re awake due to the rocking movements.
  • From about 22 weeks your baby may see light from outside the womb.
  • At 26 weeks, your baby might be soothed by the sound of your voice and move in response to a hand being rubbed on your belly.
  • After 32 weeks, your baby can recognise certain sounds you make when you speak and also remember certain music played in the womb.

How can you bond with your unborn baby?

  1. Massage or gently rub your bump
  2. Sing and talk to them
  3. Play your favourite music or lullabies to them
  4. Have a warm bath and reflect on who this little person will be
  5. Go swimming
  6. Read out loud to them
  7. Call your baby by their name
  8. Try pregnancy yoga
  9. Keep a sonogram image nearby
  10. Meditate with your hands on your belly
  11. Respond to your baby’s kicks by pushing or rubbing the area
  12. Go for a walk and think about your baby and your special bond
  13. Start a pregnancy journal
  14. Book a maternity photography session
  15. Schedule some relaxation and manage your stress so your baby relaxes with you

How can your partner or other caregivers bond with your unborn baby?

  1. Research and be informed about birth and newborns to feel involved
  2. Attend as many prenatal appointments as possible
  3. Have little conversations with their baby
  4. Acknowledge their baby’s presence by saying hello and goodbye to the bump
  5. Read them a bedtime story each night
  6. Have a copy of the ultrasound to keep nearby
  7. Take a prenatal course together
  8. Massage or rub the bump if the mother agrees to it
  9. Talk to other parents or caregivers and share your thoughts and feelings
  10. Feel and respond to the baby’s kicks and movements

How can older siblings bond with your unborn baby?

  1. Read them stories about pregnancy and babies
  2. Allow them to touch your belly to feel the baby’s movements
  3. Encourage them to sing and chat to their sibling-to-be
  4. Talk about the baby as though it’s their baby too
  5. Create a list of baby names together
  6. Give your child a doll to show them how to nurture a baby
  7. Let them hear you talk about how lucky the baby will be to have an amazing sibling
  8. Tell them stories about when they were a baby or in your belly
  9. Suggest they make something for the baby or choose a gift
  10. Ponder together what you think the baby might be doing in the womb
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