Pregnancy is easily one of the most exciting times of a woman’s life. It can also be one of the most challenging. This is especially true for expectant mothers who are single, either by choice or by circumstances beyond their control. Just because it can be more challenging, however, does not mean it is any less magical. Here is what you need to do to make your pregnancy the fantastic experience it should be.
Find a Good Social Worker – The right social worker can connect with needed resources, including single mother support groups. Many times, your prenatal clinic will connect you with a social worker. However, if you are unhappy with your first worker, keep meeting with others until you find one that makes you comfortable and that is truly interested in your well-being.
Learn Your Rights – If you are having a baby on your own by choice, you may choose to list the father as unknown on the birth certificate. If you do decide that you want or need financial support from an unwilling father, however, you will need to file a paternity suit against the father to have him legally declared as responsible for your child.
Prenatal Care – Find a compassionate, caring OB/GYN to care for you throughout your pregnancy and delivery. Ask friends with children for recommendations. Since you will be seeing your doctor regularly, it is vital that you choose someone with whom you will feel comfortable and secure.
Childbirth Classes – When you are nearing the end of your second trimester, find a quality childbirth class and enlist a trusted friend to serve as your partner. Whether male or female, a close friend can help alleviate the loneliness that can come with being single and pregnant and can also help you build happy memories of loving times that you can treasure for years to come. While it does not matter if your partner is male or female, it is important to choose a friend that will be by your side during the delivery.
Eat Right – Even if you feel so nauseous that the thought of food disgusts you, make sure to eat regularly and take in plenty of nutritious foods. There may be many times that you simply do not feel like cooking. Start working on your support network. You will likely have many friends, family members and neighbors who are more than willing to help you with cooking, cleaning, yard work, and other errands. Accept the help and let people know how much you appreciate them. After all, you will definitely need help while you recover after delivery.
Start a Baby Registry –Babies are notoriously expensive. Even if you have an excellent job, the financial burden of preparing for baby can be hard for those who are single and pregnant. The people who care about you will be eager to buy gifts for the new baby, so do not feel bad about setting up a gift registry. Many places, like Walmart, Babies R Us, Target, and more offer the ability to set up registries online, making it even easier to get the help you need.
Make It Special – Just because you are single does not make this time any less special for you. Take plenty of pictures of your changing body, of the finished nursery, and of you with your supportive friends and family. It is also important to take time to spoil yourself. Get a massage or simply spend a night in watching movies and enjoying snacks with your closest friends.
Pregnancy can be extremely challenging for a single mother, but it can still be wondrous and full of joy if you lean on those who love you. You are preparing for the adventure of motherhood. Take the time while you are waiting for your baby to arrive to show yourself some love while building a loving environment for your child.
About the Author: Donna Moody is one of the advisors on a popular pregnancy blog online. She uses her experiences as a mother, teacher, and woman to help others get through their pregnancy successfully.