There’s plenty to think about when you’ve decided you want a baby. Here are five more things to add to your list!
Do you both want a child?
If you have decided that now is the time to start a family, make sure your partner feels the same way. It’s a big decision, so make sure it’s what your partner wants too.
Don’t be tempted to just get pregnant, unless you are a single mother and you’ve decided to go it alone. If you have a partner pregnancy is something nice to enjoy and share. If your partner seems anxious about starting a family, talk it over. It may be that they are worried about finances. You can work out a budget together and find out about any benefits you will be entitled to, which might make him or her feel more secure.
Are you ready to give up your freedom?
Having a baby isn’t a prison sentence. You’ll still get out to see friends, but maybe not quite so often as you did before or in the same way.
If you’re lucky enough to be able to get a babysitter, or you have a relative living close by who will look after baby, great. You can go out, but don’t forget you can’t stay in bed all day because you’ve got a hangover any more. There’s a baby to look after. If you’re breastfeeding, you won’t be able to drink, but you can express your milk into bottles, so you can stay out more than a few hours.
You might have to start seeing friends for lunch, somewhere you can bring a child, Picnics in the park are great in the summer. You could also invite friends over to your place, that way if they have kids they can bring them with them and you don’t have to worry about babysitters. Friends without kids may find it hard to adapt to your new way of life, but they’ll get used to it.
So, you may have to give up your wild life clubbing, but you don’t have to give up your social life entirely.
If you are working and you have been in employment for 26 weeks or more at the same company, you will be entitled to maternity pay. You’ll get 90% of your weekly wage for six months and then you will receive £123 or 90% of your weekly wage, if it is lower, for a period of 33 weeks. Have a look at the Gov.UK website for more details.
If you are going back to work, you will need to budget for childcare. If you have decided to stay at home, then you must get used to living on one wage. Try and save some money whilst you’re pregnant, or better still, start living on one wage as soon as you can. This will mean by the time your baby arrives, you will be used to budgeting and you’ll have some money in the bank for emergencies, or to go towards your mortgage payments for a while.
Do you both agree how you want your child to be raised?
Before baby is born, talk about the way you want your child to be raised. Are you both, or just one of you religious, do you want your baby to be brought up in a certain religion? Do you want your child to go to a private or a religious school? Or, are you happy with your nearest state school? Talking about these matters now, will make sure there’s no arguments, or upsets in the future.
Have you got enough space?
Is your home cluttered with things you never use? Do you fall over things left in your hallway? Can you get into your spare room? Now is the time to make space. De-clutter your home. Make room for a pram or pushchair in the hall. Turn the spare room into the nursery and throw away anything you don’t use.
Make you home easy to clean and simple to find the things you need. You’ll be glad you did when the baby comes.