I had my beautiful daughter when I was 19. My pregnancy was unplanned and I didn’t fully realize what having a child would be until I saw her pretty little face. My circumstances weren’t ideal, I wasn’t married, didn’t have my own place, and shortly after finding out I was pregnant I was fired from my job as a waitress. My life was in shambles…and I was pregnant. My daughter is now 4 going on 5 and I’m happy to say that things have really come together in these past 5 years. I see alot of other young moms and I wanted to offer my advice and thoughts to them, being a young parent myself. So this is my advice to a young woman deciding whether or not to have a child.
1. Its not all baby rattles and sweet lullabies!
Having a child is life changing and you will come across some challenges that will not be easy to deal with. Your child, however cute they are, will be a challenge. You’ll have late nights; you’ll have nights when you want to walk out and turn in your Mommy card. There is more to a child then just pretty clothes…remember our children don’t stay babies forever.
2. It’s not just about you
It’ll no longer be about manicures and late night outings to the movies. You’ll have another life that will depend on you, regardless of what you want to do. It’s not something that you can just throw away or put on hold until you are ready. Having a child requires more than patience, it requires you to become un-selfish and sacrifice. And that is something that doesn’t happen overnight.
Young people often have the mindset that having a baby will bring the parents closer together and you’ll create the perfect little family. Well, real life hardly mirrors Lifetime movies. Being a young parent is beyond tough and challenging and you don’t know until our smack in the middle of it how much it will affect you mentally, physically, and emotionally. Just because you’re in love and the man of your dreams says he loves you does not mean either of you are ready for children.
4. Money doesn’t grow on trees
From diapers to onesizes to bottles to formula to strollers to car seats. Babies are not cheap! And while you can find great deals, you need to be ready to take on the task of providing for your bundle of joy.
5. Be Responsible!
Can’t tell you how many times I’ve walked or driven past a clearly pregnant woman who is smoking a cigarette. You’re choosing to have a child, it’s momentous. But you need to be responsible for them even before they take their first breathe into the world. That includes ensuring you attend all prenatal appointments and taking care of your body. What happens to you happens to your child. Alcohol, cigarettes, and marijuana shouldn’t even be considered while pregnant. Why would you choose to harm your child? Be smart and be responsible.