Responsibility Icebreakers Before Getting Pregnant


You and your husband have decided that it's time to have a child. You're excited and maybe a little nervous. You suspect that there are boxes you should be checking off prior to actually getting pregnant, but aren't quite sure what they are.

It makes perfect sense that you should want to get things "just right" before taking the plunge.

Pre-Pregnancy Health

Before you try to get pregnant, you and your husband need to have a conversation regarding the importance of pre-natal health. The healthier you are prior to pregnancy, the better the odds for a healthy pregnancy. Visit your doctor before you attempt to conceive. She can tell you whether you need more folic acid in your diet, the kinds of foods you should eat, and which habits you should give up prior to pregnancy. You and your husband need to discuss if these are changes you're willing to make together, or if it would be better to wait. For example, if weekends normally involve drinking alcohol, you will need to plan to abstain.

Lifestyle Changes

It's possible that you will need to make lifestyle changes, but still not get pregnant for months. It is common for a woman to learn she is pregnant three weeks after conception. At the same time, a baby is most sensitive to harm two to eight weeks after conception. It is during this period that his major organs begin to develop, meaning anything you eat, drink or smoke can affect development. Because you're not absolutely certain when you will become pregnant, you may spend months living as though you are. This is a far easier task if your husband is on board and understands the sacrifice.

Your Relationship

Take time as a couple to "baby-proof" your relationship, even prior to pregnancy. Discuss the importance of making time for one another, doing special things together and making your relationship a priority. Strong relationships rarely happen by accident. Your odds of remaining together happily are enhanced by open communication and planning for romance after baby.

Expectations

Disagreements often arise from a couple's different expectations of a situation. For example, you hope for a boy, but your husband wants a girl. You want the child to play sports, but your husband would rather your offspring focus on studies. You dream of bringing your little one home to upscale Atlanta, GA, apartments, but the baby's father pictures living in a small town.

It's those mental images of what life is going to be like after the baby's birth that become entrenched and can feel as though they're worth fighting for. The truth is, being honest with one another regarding expectations prior to pregnancy can help smooth out wrinkles before they even develop.

Budget

There is nothing cheap about becoming parents. According to MSN Money, the average two-parent, middle-class family will spend in the neighborhood of $250,000 (US) to raise a child to the age of 17. Although the outlay won't come at one time, it is critical that you and your husband discuss how you plan to pay for such things as childcare, medical costs and education. Working on your budget as a team can relieve a great deal of stress and may alleviate future arguments over money.

You can't plan for every conceivable contingency, but touching the most obvious bases will help you make a more informed decision as to whether you're ready to become parents.


This article has been written for The Pregnancy Centre by:

Rachel Wood
Rachel is not THAT (Evan) Rachel Wood. She's just a small-town journalist who enjoys writing about food, home and design.


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