If you are preparing for pregnancy, it is relatively easy to find information on taking care of your physical health in preparation. If you are eating right, exercising regularly, taking prenatal vitamins, and have cut out alcohol, cigarettes, and caffeine, it’s likely you think you are all set to start trying. While your health is greatly important, there are other significant emotional and financial items to consider before you have a baby.
First, it is important to sit down with your partner to discuss some key issues regarding how you will raise your child. These include:
- Religious observances
- Public education vs. private schools vs. homeschooling
- Parents working vs. staying home and childcare issues related to those decisions
- Comfort level with hiring babysitters
- Your thoughts regarding the possibility of your child having special needs
Next, it is important to discuss finances. Consider starting a slush fund right now that will help you pay for maternity clothes, doctor co-pays, nursery furniture, and other expenses you will have as you prepare for your newborn. Now is also a good time to discuss college funds, taking out life insurance policies, and creating wills if you have not done so already.
Finally, have a plan for tackling stress. Stress can unfortunately arise when couples feel it is taking too long to conceive. It can also happen during pregnancy, when hormones are playing with your emotions. Also, the closer you get to your due date, the more anxious you may find yourself regarding last minute preparations. Take the time now to think about your favorite stress reliever. It may be going to a yoga class, practicing deep breathing techniques, or simply sitting down with a cup of hot tea and a magazine. No matter your method, remember to use it consistently when you need it.