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Are you ready for a Baby

Are you ready for a Baby

 

Are you ready for a baby
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Let's face it. Not all babies are planned. Even the most organised women can find themselves staring in disbelief at a positive pregnancy test. But if you're undecided about whether to take the plunge into parenthood, it's worth considering the impact on your life of having your own tiny bundle of joy.60%
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The first thing to realise is that having a baby means responsibility. And lots of it - 24-hours a day. You will no longer be the first priority in your life. Most new parents find the delight and joy that their baby brings more than compensate for putting their own needs on the back burner. But it is undoubtedly an irreversible change in lifestyle, so it's worthwhile asking yourself whether you're ready for it.

This is especially true if you are used to being independent, with your own career, interests and social life. Although you may plan on returning to work after you've had your baby, you may have to pass up potential promotions because the demands don't fit in with your new commitments. Similarly, if you're used to going out for impromptu drinks with friends or popping to the gym on a whim, you need to be realistic that this may no longer happen when you have to arrange a babysitter.
Your Partner
The second consideration is your relationship. Obviously, lots of single parents bring up children successfully. But if you are in a relationship, having a baby will alter it fundamentally: you will go from being a couple to being parents. This can be a testing time for any relationship, but even more so if you are not both committed to the idea or if you have completely different expectations about the reality of parenthood. So discuss with your partner what becoming a parent means to each of you, and try and reach consensus before you see the thin blue line appearing!
Money, Money, Money!
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Then there's money. Babies are expensive. You may be lucky and have friends with older children who can pass on some of the baby basics, such as a pram or a cot. Or you may find that the prospective grandparents may want to help out. But you still need to consider the longer term costs. You may want to stay at home or work part time when you have a baby, so can you afford to drop your hours? If you do want to continue working, you're likely to end up with childcare costs. Although these vary depending upon where you live and the type of care you opt for, you can expect to pay a minimum of around £125 a week for a full-time place in nursery or with a childminder, or from £5 an hour (plus tax and national insurance) for a nanny.
Is It For You?
If you're still undecided whether it's the right thing for you, talk to friends who already have children about the reality of parenthood (not the rose-tinted version!). Or try 'borrowing' a young baby from a friend or neighbour for a couple of hours.


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