Locating books dealing with bedrest can help mom to know that she is not alone. They can help give her ideas of things that she can accomplish even though she is relegated to bed. They can give her daily affirmations that continually uplift her spirits and tell her that she is special and worthwhile. They can also provide her with entertainment over the course of the day. All types of books are good and it should be mom's choice as to their content. Having mom write a weekly email to her friends and family about her situation can not only help to unburden her of possible loneliness, but also keep those interested in touch with her situation as it changes over time. Since mom has so much time to herself to think, it is really up to her to "enlighten" those who do not understand.
There are underlying feelings of inadequacy that she might be dealing with, however. The guilty feeling that she should have done something more, less, different; the disappointed feeling that she should be more in control of her own body; the unexpected feeling of being different than most pregnant women is all consuming if left without anyone to dispute them. These emotions can become very overwhelming and it is important for her to discuss them with her physician, her partner, or whomever she prefers is very important in letting her get things off her chest.
She might need counseling to deal with her feelings, but definitely needs a venue through which she can express those feelings openly and honestly. Helping her to find support groups for bedresting women can lead her down a better mental path and talking to other women who have gone through similar circumstances can allow her to understand that she is not alone.
Usually with topics such as this, we only concern ourselves with the mom, but dad can be emotionally impacted by a pregnancy changed by bedrest, as well. Not only does mom's health status become something that dad has to deal with, but normally being used to sharing all the responsibilities of their life together and then being told that you are going to have to fly solo while providing constant positive reinforcement to mom, can be a daunting task for anyone, especially for the partner. Dads in a bedresting pregnancy are many times pushed to the side and their feelings and concerns are typically not addressed. Mom is usually too overwhelmed with her own feelings and society is not accepting of a man who needs to "unload" and talk. So in many cases, dad is left to handling his own emotions by himself and just like mom, can become very lonely.
I recall being on my own bedrest and how much more tired my husband began to look as our pregnancy progressed. While I was dealing with my own issues, my husband was taking care of the house, going to work, making all the meals, handling our families, and his most important job, taking care of me. His own health was never called into question even though he was not getting enough sleep and was wearing down as the weeks passed by.
Once I was admitted to the Antepartum unit of the hospital, his days became much longer and tiring. They would start at 5 am when he got up for work and continue until around midnight. Once he finished work, he had to go home, take a shower and clean up, answer all my email, print up letters to bring to the hospital, gather the mail together, feed the dog, and get back into his car to come up to the hospital and share some time with me. He would usually stay until about 9:30-10:00 pm and then he would return home, eat some dinner, and go to bed, only to start that whole routine again each morning.
After 17 weeks of my having been in bed for the bulk of the pregnancy, my husband was exhausted. When our sons were born at 31 weeks, and remained in the hospital for another 5 weeks, my husband had another 5 weeks to pull long days that were emotionally draining, except once they were born, he had to worry all day about the health of his preterm twin sons.
Once my own health was not an issue, I was able to somewhat take some of the emotional burden from his shoulders, but no one ever asked him how "he" was feeling about everything or how "he" was dealing with such an emotional time in his life.