Is it wrong that whenever a friend announces that she is pregnant my heart sinks? You would think that as a mother of four myself I would be first in line to shower my nearest and dearest with congratulations when I hear that they are expecting.
With so many babies of my own you might imagine I would be bursting to share advice on birth, nappies, feeding and sleeping patterns.Nothing could be further from the truth. In fact I cross the road to avoid new mums. Indeed I will admit that one or two friendships have hit the buffers once my mate gave birth.
When you are mired deep in the trenches of new motherhood, the minutiae of your newborn's activities are more addictive than the plot of Homeland, more absorbing than a technical bake off and more fascinating than the most compelling nugget of celebrity gossip. In short you are in the grip of an all-consuming obsession.
I get it. I have been there. I remember buttonholing my poor husband the moment he stepped in from work to engage him in intense discussions regarding the consistency of the contents of my sons' nappies.
I could spend hours over a cooling cup of coffee debating which bottle teat was best to stop trapped wind or the perfect swaddling technique with my fellow new mums.
It was as if we had all be sucked out of our everyday lives into a cult where sleep deprivation and constant low level physical discomfort was the chosen method of torture. As we pushed our prams, gritty eyed with exhaustion, boobs and nether regions battered by breastfeeding and birth, we inhabited a different reality to normal people.
Once I phoned an NCT friend at 5am. I didn't consider for a second that I was being anti social as I knew she would be awake and eager to swap notes on how frequently each of our babies had woken in the night.
We happily whiled away the pre-dawn hours chatting about how much we had struggled to get them to latch on and what were the odds on us actually managing to wash and dress ourselves before it was bedtime once again (low, since you ask).
The thing is that while this is perfectly acceptable behaviour in the new mother, my goodness it's dull once you have moved on to the less IQ-sapping stages of motherhood. Once your children are more tricky to wake up than to get to sleep, they are eating you out of house and home rather than being coaxed to drink an ounce of milk and the less you know about their toilet habits the better, baby chat is just such a turn off.
I don't want to be reminded of all the blood, sweat and tears expended during those early months. They are behind me now and for that I am grateful.
Call me selfish, but I am not the slightest bit interested in hearing about a new mum's episiotomy or breastfeeding traumas. No matter how much I might love her as a friend, I don't want to debate the pros and cons of breastfeeding, co-sleeping, baby-led weaning and potty training.
There is no point in sharing my opinions on these matters with new mums anyway. Their views are held so passionately I don't think my world weary observations would go down well.
As they rage against contrary mothering methods, fighting the good fight for Gina Ford or evangelising about attachment parenting, I hate to break it to them that in a few short years, no matter what choices they made their children will all be eating, sleeping and pooing by themselves.
Fortunately one thing my years of motherhood have taught me is that, while it might be with a heavy heart that I post off a new baby card to a close friend, there is light at the end of the tunnel.
They will be restored to the woman who is more interested in bottles with corks than teats, whose boobs are more at home in a Wonderbra than a nursing bra, and for whom poo is not a topic for the dinner table.
This may depend on what stage you're at, but do you agree with Ursula? Or do you celebrate your friends' baby news and are you eager to swap baby talk? Tell us what you think.