If you recently found out you are unexpectedly pregnant and you’re freaking out, take a few breaths! You are NOT alone and it WILL be okay.
As I write this during my third pregnancy, after TWO unplanned babies, here are 5 not-so-fun feelings I personally went through during my first few months of finding out I was unexpectedly pregnant.
I have come out on the other side to say that I love my sweet little unplanned stinkers, and I wouldn’t have believed I’d be the strong, confident mom I am today when I saw those two positive lines for the first time.
Here’s how you might feel when you are handling an unplanned pregnancy…
1. You might panic.
If it hasn’t happened to you already, you will most likely have a fair share of meltdowns throughout the course of your pregnancy. You might question everything. You may not want to do this. You might wish your circumstances were different. You may doubt yourself. You might feel really sad, confused, and scared.
I’m telling you this because it is 100% NORMAL and OKAY to feel this way. I know that guilty feeling all too well… that feeling of not being thankful for that little miracle inside of you. When you don’t plan this, it’s really hard to be happy about it.
My advice is to let yourself feel these things. Don’t push them away. Journal it, vent to your significant other or someone close to you who won’t judge, and have those moments of sobbing and tears (again, I HAVE BEEN THERE).
These feelings will pass, and things won’t always feel this confusing and uncertain. You will become more and more comfortable with your pregnancy, more confident as a woman, and you will become an amazing mom, because mother nature is on your side – and this is quite literally, what we were made to do.
2. Your baby’s father might also panic.
Something important I’ve learned since my first pregnancy (I’m currently preggo with my third), is that the dad is sometimes forgotten in the mix of pregnancy, birth and arrival of a new baby.
Everybody will ask how YOU’RE doing and feeling. Everybody will focus on you, will ask if you need anything, will worry about you, and so on. But what we forget is that there is an EQUAL person that is involved in this – the dad! Just because he isn’t physically pregnant, doesn’t mean he isn’t FREAKING OUT on the inside, whether or not the baby was planned.
He is allowed to have his doubts too. He is allowed to be scared. He is allowed to lash out sometimes. He is allowed to question everything.
This unexpected news has hit him in the face too. And just as much as you are, he is scared too. He probably won’t admit that. It might come off as anger or panic or frustration instead. But just remember: he will feel intense pressure to provide now more than ever, and he may not know how to handle that properly at first.
My advice is to give him grace. Let him feel all the feelings. Tell him you are right there with him. Ask him what he needs from you. Reassure him that you are in this together. It’s my personal belief that men need reassurance just as much as us women. Especially during a time like this!
3. You might have a few unwanted responses.
The news of a new baby is usually wonderful, happy, and exciting! But, when you’re not planning it, sometimes people can forget about how wonderful a new baby is, and focus on the hardships or judgements that come with it instead.
If you don’t think certain people are going to react well to your news, mentally prepare yourself for that outcome before you tell them.
I wasn’t married or engaged when I got pregnant the first time, and because of that, some of the intitial reactions weren’t great.
During the most vulnerable time in my life, instead of being there for me, some people took it upon themselves to focus only on how THEY felt about my pregnancy.
I wasn’t mentally prepared for that and took it pretty hard. But something amazing happened after I sat on those reactions for a few weeks.
I suddenly felt this great confidence to distance myself from people who were judgemental. I had a new motto: f*ck anyone who isn’t going to make me feel great during my pregnancy! I think it was the mama bear in me happening already.
I wasn’t going to let ANYONE make me feel insignificant and feel like they wanted to control MY life, or wish it was different.
So, if you have people like this in your life, you might want to hold off on telling them until you develop confidence in your pregnancy (it will come!).
If you get a poor reaction, remember: those opinions aren’t powerful enough to defeat you.
You may also be surprised by how incredibly supportive others are when you tell them the news. Remember those people and keep them close.
Spoiler alert: everyone forgets how they feel about it when you’re baby is born, and then they’ll be amazed at how great of a mom you are, and how stinkin’ precious your baby is. So… just so you know… bad vibes from people are usually temporary. Shitty, but temporary.
You got this.
4. You might feel pressure to get your whole life together in 9 months.
Well, a baby is coming! So you need to get married, buy a house, have all this money in the bank and figure out your long-term life plan and career… right? WRONG.
Do not let your pregnancy make you feel like you need to have your life completely in order before the baby gets here. You’ll end up rushing things and putting way too much stress on yourself.
If you’re not married, you don’t NEED to get engaged or married if the timing isn’t right. You don’t NEED a 4 bedroom house, and you don’t NEED to figure out your long-term career path all before the baby gets here.
It’s okay to not have the perfect plan in place. And it’s okay to still be uncertain when baby arrives. You will still be able to figure everything out and a lot of things will happen at the times they are supposed to.
Use this time to rest and prepare for the baby, and trust that everything will work out how it’s supposed to.
5. You might feel extreme financial stress.
If you weren’t expecting a baby, you may not be ready for the costs associated with one. Don’t panic!
Yes, having a baby isn’t free. But it’s also (in my opinion) not as expensive as people make it out to be.
Here are some quick, helpful thoughts on saving money for a new baby:
- Most hospitals have payment plans and offer financial assistance.
- You probably know someone who would let you borrow baby items and clothes.
- Gently used baby items are sold everywhere, and are very inexpensive.
- Breast milk is not only the best choice, but it’s free!
- Most insurance companies will offer you a free breast pump.
- You don’t actually need 80% of what is advertised to you as a new mom.
- People are extremely generous during a first pregnancy! Get your thank you notes ready.
- Create your baby registry wisely, and it will be a huge asset to getting your must-haves.
- Generic brand diapers and wipes get the job done and are half the price!
So, there you have it.
Long story short: everything is going to be OKAY! You’re going to be a great mom and I’m so excited for you to experience mommy-hood. Welcome to the club!